Assessing Information Systems and Computer Information Systems Programs from a Balanced Scorecard Perspective
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Assessment of educational programs is one of the important means used in academia for accountability, accreditation, and improvement of program quality. The assessment practices, guidelines, and requirements are very broad and vary widely among academic programs and from one institution to the other. In this paper, from the theoretical lenses of a strategic planning and management methodology, the Balanced Scorecard, we try to integrate various perspectives into a performance assessment framework for an educational assessment of computing and information systems. Particularly, based on the actual accreditation experience, we propose two assessment models: a conceptual model and a process model. This modeling approach addresses the critical conceptual elements required for educational assessment and provides practical guidelines to follow for a complete, smooth and successful assessment process. In addition, we present a set of robust tools and techniques, incorporated into the process steps, team work, and task-driven management process. We were successful in our accreditation efforts, and improved the quality of our computing and information systems programs by using these presented assessment methods. We share our views and thoughts in the form of lessons learned and suggested best practices so as to streamline program assessment and simplify its procedures and steps.