As more academic administrators, faculty, and student affairs professionals respond to calls for student outcome assessment, demand increases for a basic, how-to assessment resource. The author provides a practical, hands-on guide to assessing student learning and development in higher education. In engaging, nontechnical language he describes the key issues, strategies, terminology, and challenges in developing an assessment program within an academic department or a student affairs office. He offers step-by-step guidance for determining what is to be assessed and for defining program objectives. He shows how to select reliable and valid existing assessment methods that best fit institutional needs, and details how to design new assessment -including developing a blueprint for a method, writing a multiple choice test item, and constructing a rating scale or checklist. Erwin spells out ways to ensure the quality and reliability of data, explains how to use assessment information most effectively, and more.