For Immediate Release

David Tritelli
Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs
202-884-0812 (office)

VALUE Institute Registration Now Open

AAC&U’s 3rd Annual VALUE Institute, with Scoring Powered by Digication, Opens Registration for 2019–2020

Oct 16, 2019

Washington, DC—The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) today announced the opening of registration for the 2019–2020 VALUE Institute, the leading source for direct evidence of student learning in higher education.

VALUE (Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education) is AAC&U’s signature approach to the assessment of student learning outcomes. Through this evidence-based approach, authentic student work—that is, the work students already produce across their various learning pathways and fields of study—is assessed using rubrics that were developed by teams of faculty and other educational professionals from higher education institutions of all types and sizes across the country.

The VALUE Institute provides external validation of institutional assessments. Using the VALUE rubrics, certified scorers evaluate samples of student work that have been collected and uploaded to a digital repository by participating institutions, departments, programs, states, consortia, and other providers. Scoring by faculty and other educators who have been certified to use the rubrics helps ensure that the measurement of quality learning remains grounded in the expertise of educators.

“The VALUE Institute is a signature representation of AAC&U’s commitment to liberal education, equity, and quality as the foundations for excellence in undergraduate education,” said AAC&U President Lynn Pasquerella. “We look forward to expanding the scope of our work across institutions of all types.”

The VALUE Institute team works directly with participants to develop an appropriate sampling plan and to collect samples of student work for scoring. After the samples have been scored, participants receive customized reports, along with copies of all raw data, that allow them to explore the results more deeply in their own settings and contexts. In addition to providing validated evidence of student achievement, the VALUE Institute enables participants to disaggregate the results by various student subgroups.

Overall, the annual results provide systematic information on the quality of student learning, revealing the nationwide landscape of student achievement in higher education.

2019–2020 marks the third year of the VALUE Institute and the launch of a new scoring platform that is powered by Digication. “Digication’s focus on making student learning visible through ePortfolios expands the opportunity for participants to assess learning across educational pathways and aligns with the ethos and vision of the VALUE approach to assessment,” said Terry Rhodes, AAC&U’s Vice President for Quality, Curriculum, and Assessment and Executive Director of VALUE.  

Jeff Yan, Digication’s CEO, said, “AAC&U's VALUE rubrics are the gold standard for assessing student achievement. Over two thousand colleges and universities have used VALUE to assess artifacts created by thousands of students. Assessments using VALUE rubrics provide far more comprehensive results than test scores or grades alone.”

The new scoring platform is one of several new enhancements to the VALUE Institute overall. Kate Drezek McConnell, Assistant Vice President for Research and Assessment at AAC&U, said, “Creating a new system exclusively for the VALUE Institute allowed us to design a platform that would alleviate—rather than create—work for participating colleges and universities, as well as provide a streamlined user experience for individual VALUE scorers. Participating institutions will see several other new features—from enhanced communications to new services we are offering like assignment alignment review—that add to their overall experience with the VALUE Institute.”

More information about the VALUE Institute is available online at  

About AAC&U

AAC&U is the leading national association dedicated to advancing the vitality and public standing of liberal education by making quality and equity the foundations for excellence in undergraduate education in service to democracy. Its members are committed to extending the advantages of a liberal education to all students, regardless of academic specialization or intended career. Founded in 1915, AAC&U now comprises 1,400 member institutions—including accredited public and private colleges, community colleges, research universities, and comprehensive universities of every type and size.  

AAC&U functions as a catalyst and facilitator, forging links among presidents, administrators, faculty, and staff engaged in institutional and curricular planning. Through a broad range of activities, AAC&U reinforces the collective commitment to liberal education at the national, local, and global levels. Its high-quality programs, publications, research, meetings, institutes, public outreach efforts, and campus-based projects help individual institutions ensure that the quality of student learning is central to their work as they evolve to meet new economic and social challenges. Information about AAC&U can be found at