Study Abroad Assessment Model Arcadia ATLAS™ Wins Award for Innovation in International Education

By Purnell T. Cropper | December 6, 2012

The College of Global Studies at Arcadia University has been awarded the 2012 Nikolai N. Khaladjan International Award for its assessment initiative Arcadia ATLAS™ (Assessment, Teaching, Learning and Scholarship).

The honor was awarded to The College by the American Association of University Administrators  (AAUA), a non-profit, educational organization that promotes professional development in higher education and works to establish ethical and professional standards for administrators and institutions of higher education.

This prestigious annual award recognizes innovation and achievement in international education worldwide. Named for the founder and former president of the Moscow External University of the Humanities, the award is given for work that is both innovative and has wide potential for application or impact on post-secondary education.

Dr. Nicolette DeVille Christensen, Vice President of The College of Global Studies, Arcadia University, said, “It is a great honor for The College of Global Studies to accept this innovative award and we thank the AAUA for their support and recognition. Arcadia Atlas™ is an exciting development for us and we hope this approach to assessment will help position international education at the heart of higher education.”

“It is clear to me that Arcadia ATLAS™ has made a leap forward on several fronts critical to international education: conducting program review in complex and different situations, assessing student learning through study abroad, defining ‘transformative’ and the other keywords in international education, and situating the whole international enterprise within the institutional mission,” says Dr. Jerome Neuner, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at Canisius College and AAUA Awards Chair on the Association’s decision to recognize Arcadia Atlas™.

Arcadia ATLAS™ is a groundbreaking assessment model that positions assessment within the accrediting structure of the University, thus embedding the assessment process for study abroad right alongside the regular institution-wide assessment that is becoming standard to accreditation processes.  By so doing, ATLAS™ seeks to challenge institutional thinking around the place and position of study abroad within the academy and to drive it to the heart of the institutional mission.

David Rudd, Director of the Center for Research and Assessment at The College of Global Studies, expressed the appreciation of The College for the recognition. He said, “On behalf of The College of Global Studies, we are honored and delighted to learn of this award, as it validates our hope that the Arcadia ATLAS™ initiative serves the wider field of international education.”

The AAUA is a non-profit is educational organization focused on developing and advancing superior standards for the profession of higher education administration. Past recipients of the Nikolai N. Khaladjan International Award include the University of Kansas, SUNY Institute of Technology, the University of South Carolina, the University of London, University of Western Illinois, Ohio State University and the Regensburg University (Denmark).

The official awards ceremony was due to be held at the AAUA’s Annual Leadership Seminar at Delaware Valley College, Doylestown, Pa., on Nov. 3, but the event was cancelled in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.