PACAT provides faculty with learning outcomes assessment instruments matching their teaching and learning goals. Building nationally referenced tests from items contributed by the faculty using them and allowing departments to select content areas relevant to their learning goals, provides the needed balance between locally developed and nationally referenced tests. We recognize diversity of opinion and content as key strengths of higher education.
The core methodologies used by PACAT originated in the early 1970s in the context of early competency-based college courses. Computer models were developed to create and score multiple-choice tests that measured the degree to which students were able to meet the competency objectives of their courses. Data from both formative and summative assessments were used for student feedback to improve learning and faculty feedback to improve instruction. PACAT remains strongly committed to both these aspects of the assessment cycle.