Peter T. Ewell
Peter Ewell is the Vice President at the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS), a research and development center founded to improve the management effectiveness of colleges and universities. A member of the staff since 1981, Dr. Ewell’s work focuses on assessing institutional effectiveness and the outcomes of college, and involves both research and direct consulting with institutions and state systems on collecting and using assessment information in planning, evaluation, and budgeting. He has directed many projects on this topic, including initiatives funded by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, the National Institute for Education, The Consortium for the Advancement of Private Higher Education, Lumina Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and The Pew Charitable Trusts. In addition, he has consulted with over 375 colleges and universities and twenty-four state systems of higher education on topics including assessment, program review, accreditation, and student retention. His international consulting on quality assurance includes work in the U.K., Chile, Germany, Australia, Hong Kong, and with the OECD. He has also been actively involved in NCHEMS work on designing longitudinal student databases and other academic management information tools.
Dr. Ewell has authored seven books and numerous articles on the topic of improving undergraduate instruction through the assessment of student outcomes. Among his publications are The Self-Regarding Institution: Information for Excellence and Assessing Educational Outcomes, both of which have been widely cited in the development of campus-based assessment programs. In addition, he has prepared commissioned papers for many agencies, including the Study Group on the Conditions of Excellence in American Higher Education (authors of the report Involvement in Learning), the Education Commission of the States, the National Governors’ Association, the National Conference of State Legislators, and the National Center for Public Policy in Higher Education. Widely sought as a speaker on assessment and quality assurance, in 1985 he gave the keynote address for the first national conference on Assessment in American Higher Education, and has since spoken widely on this topic at both national and international conferences. In 1998 he led the design team for the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) and currently chairs its National Advisory Board, as well as chairing the National Advisory Board of the Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE).
Prior to joining NCHEMS, Dr. Ewell was Coordinator for Long-Range Planning at Governors State University. A graduate of Haverford College, he received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale University in 1976 and was on the faculty of the University of Chicago. In addition to consulting in higher education, Dr. Ewell has been involved in program evaluation, organizational development and strategic planning for a variety of non-profit and arts organizations including the National Endowment for the Arts and six state arts agencies. In 1981 he received the National Theater Association award for Theory and Criticism.