Dr. Felix Wao is the Founding Director of the Office of Academic Assessment at the University of Oklahoma (OU). Working collaboratively with faculty across all disciplines, he oversees and supports academic quality efforts including strategies for direct, performance-based assessment of student learning for academic programs and the core curriculum that reflect current trends and best practices in higher education. He chairs the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Learning Outcomes Assessment (PACLOA) and is a member of the Provost’s Advisory Committee on General Education (PACGEO), and Academic Program Review Committee. His current research focuses on strategies for blending assessment processes and analytics to enhance student learning at the institutional and program levels.
Dr. Wao joined OU in 2013 after serving as Founding Director of Assessment at Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts. Previously, he was Associate Director of Assessment at the University of South Florida (USF) for more than 5 years where he oversaw the development and implementation of assessment of academic programs and administrative units, coordinated assessment of the general education program, and played a key role in development of a system to manage assessment of academic programs and administrative units. He co-chaired both Academic Assessment Council and Administrative Assessment Council and was a member of Florida Board of Governor’s work group that oversaw the review of statewide assessment policies for undergraduate programs. He has taught graduate courses in Curriculum Development and Program Evaluation as well as undergraduate course in Social Science Statistics.
Dr. Wao has published and given numerous conference presentations on various themes of learning outcomes assessment in higher education at regional, national and international assessment and research conferences including Association for Institutional Research (AIR), Assessment Institute, Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and World Journalism Education Congress. He holds a BS in Mathematics and Religious Studies from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota, MA and PhD in Higher Education Administration and Policy Studies from the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. He is a member of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Peer Review Corps and a Mentor of the HLC Assessment Academy.
Christina Smith is a Ph.D. candidate in the Educational Psychology program at Oklahoma State University. Previously, she worked at the University of Central Oklahoma for nearly eight years, where her primary roles included working as an Academic Advisor for the College of Education and then as a Research Analyst in the Office of Institutional Assessment. Additionally, she serves as both an adjunct professor and graduate teaching assistant where she is the primary instructor of classes such as General Psychology, Adolescent Psychology, and Child & Adolescent Development. Her research interests focus on bullying, with a special interest in cyberbullying and how these experiences in adolescence impact socioemotional development and behavioral patterns into adulthood. She has several journal publications and conference presentations to her name, in addition to a genuine love for statistics and learning outcomes assessment in higher education.
Olivia Perrin is a third year PhD student in Cognitive Psychology with a Quantitative Psychology minor working under Dr. Edward Cokely. Her research focuses on the assessment of decision-making skills and risk literacy. This work considers how human abilities influence decisions and real-world outcomes (e.g., detecting misinformation online). Prior to joining the Office of Academic Assessment, Olivia taught and co-taught several courses, including elements of assessment at Northern Michigan University, as well as several sections of Research Methods at OU.
Maria Idrees is a first-year doctoral student in Learning Sciences working under Dr. Michael Crowson, in the Department of Educational Psychology. Her research focus is on the effect of growth mindset on the academic outcomes of students, and associated mediators and moderators (e.g., learning environment). Maria is currently a research assistant on an NSF funded project identifying and assessing the factors critical for STEM development of the four-years research engaged students for their college career and beyond their graduation. Maria has also worked as a Lecturer at the Department of Psychology, Lahore Leads University, Lahore-Pakistan.