The Office of Assessment and Strategic Initiatives (OASI) facilitates assessment, evaluation, planning, and other research activities that actively contribute to the culture of evidence within the Division of Student Life at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK). Through training and skill development related to program review, assessment, evaluation, planning, and research, OASI strives to help departments embed these areas in day to day operations of their programs and services to continuously improve and enhance learning for all students.
Last reviewed Spring 2019
The Office of Assessment and Strategic Initiatives (OASI) seeks to become a national exemplar for student affairs assessment by firming the culture of evidence within the Division of Student Life with sustainable, rigorous, and transparent practices surrounding program review, assessment, evaluation, planning, and research that contribute to the longstanding tradition of excellence at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
Melissa A. Brown, Ph.D.
Director of Student Life Assessment and Strategic Initiatives
Melissa joined the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in September 2017. She has over 15 years of experience teaching and working in higher education assessment and accreditation. Prior to working in higher education, she was a public school teacher for 10 years. Her passion for assessment began in those early years as she spent time working on local, state, and national assessment and accreditation initiatives. Melissa earned her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2019. She has published and presented on the topics of the construct validity of the American Association of Colleges and Universities VALUE rubrics, social justice focused assessment practices, and campus climate. Her areas of expertise have been developed over the years in the areas of strategic planning, assessment, survey design, and the program review process.
Noelia Pacheco Diaz, Ph.D.
Noelia is a doctoral student working towards her PhD in Evaluation Statistics and Measurement (ESM) in the Educational Psychology and Counseling Department. She graduated from Ohio University with a Masters in Spanish Literature and Linguistics. Noelia also worked as a Spanish lecturer at Ohio State University and here at UT. In her program, she had the opportunity to gain experience in evaluating and assessing programs based on quantitative data. She is looking forward working as a Graduate Research Assistant in the Division of Student Life.
The Division of Student Life Assessment Steering Committee provides guidance and strategic direction to the Office of Assessment and Strategic Initiatives. They contribute recommendations for seamless reporting of retention, graduation, and outcomes-based initiatives for the division. The steering committee determines and helps to communicate the overall assessment efforts for the division.
- Chair – Dr. Melissa A. Brown, Director, Assessment and Strategic Initiatives
- Dr. Sean Basso, Associate Director, RecSports
- Ian Crone, Director, Student Union
- Dr. Noelia Pacheco Diaz, Assessment Coordinator, Assessment and Strategic Initiatives
- Lauri Dusselier. Director, Center for Health Education & Wellness
- Dr. Lori Smith, Assistant Director, Student Disability Services
- Blake Weiss, Coordinator of Special Projects, Office of the Vice-Chancellor
- Landin Lynd, Assistant Director, Student Life Communications
- Jennifer Pierce Thomas, Associate Director, Office of Sorority & Fraternity Life
Student Life Assessment Champions serve as the liaisons or “go-to” staff members for all things assessment within each department. More information on the role of Assessment Champions can be found in the Assessment Champions Handbook.
|Center for Health Education & Wellness
|Center for Care & Resilience
|Center for Student Engagement
|Jones Center for Leadership & Service
|Student Life Communications
|Beth Hall Davis
|Dean of Students Office
|Multicultural Student Life
|Office of Sorority & Fraternity Life
|Jennifer Pierce Thomas
|Student Conduct & Community Standards
|Student Counseling Center
|James Arnett III
|Student Disability Services
|Student Health Center
|Student Life Tech Group