Student Needs Assessment

The Student Needs Assessment is a process available for high schools and colleges to evaluate and understand current student needs. During the high school and college years, many students may encounter challenges that impact their academics or future career path. Those challenges can include family stressors, mental health problems, drug and alcohol abuse/experimentation, relationship difficulties, and concerns with solidifying their faith.

A Student Needs Assessment can help high schools and colleges evaluate themselves so they offer the right services and resources to meet the needs of their students.

Through the assessment, student needs are identified using a self-report survey of 54 common problems experienced by students. The areas assessed include the following:

  • Emotional concerns
  • Academic struggles
  • Family difficulties
  • Vocational doubts
  • Health concerns
  • Spiritual doubt/confusion

The survey measures students’ awareness of counseling services already offered, their willingness to seek out those services, and the types of services that they would prefer to have on campus.

The assessment results allow schools to have a better understanding about the services currently offered and the environment on campus. Schools are then better equipped to make decisions that may involve the following:

  • Expansion/modification of current counseling programs
  • Creation of new programs
  • Development of new student outreach techniques
  • Development of more counseling techniques for diverse populations
  • Identification of areas in which additional training for counseling staff is needed

Process
The assessment begins with a planning meeting with a research staff member from Christian Family Solutions. In this initial meeting, the staff member will meet with school administration and counseling staff to understand any immediate concerns or trends as well as set a plan for completing the assessment process.

Data Collection
The self-report survey can be administered to the students as a group using paper/pencil, or the survey can be administered electronically and sent to a student’s e-mail account.

Data Analysis
Student responses will be categorized by subgroups according to demographic information such as age, sex, year in school, ethnic/racial background. These demographic responses will serve as the independent variable. A factor analysis of the data will be done to analyze the results.

Report
Results and recommendations will be given back to the school administration through a written report. The time from data collection to having a report in hand is typically one week.

Cost
The cost of the program will vary by size of school and type of process. Some schools may decide to have a researcher come on-site for a week and complete the process. Schools using an electronic data collection method will save costs by not having researcher(s) on-site. Initial planning meetings and/or feedback meetings can also be done through live video conferencing to save on travel costs and research time. Upon request, schools participating in the Member Assistance Program can also qualify for substantial discounts on the service.

For the MAP Support Center, please call 800.438.1772 or e-mail the program coordinator at assistance@wlcfs.org.