Procedure 3B.1/11 Academic Program Improvement
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Purpose of Program Review
The central purpose of program review at Anoka-Ramsey Community College is continuous improvement, as measured by student learning and program effectiveness. Program review provides an opportunity to reflect on the current activities of each program and whether, and to what extent, the program continues to meet the changing needs of the students it is designed to serve.
Program review also serves as a tool to aid in the institutional self-study process required by the Higher Learning Commission for reaccreditation.
Finally, program review assures that the program continues to be consistent with the mission and goals of the college. Changes to the program are warranted when a program no longer meets the college’s mission and goals. Information from program reviews will be an essential component in determining the program’s future direction, curriculum, and allocation of fiscal and human resources.
For purposes of program review, the unit of analysis shall be the current inventory of degree and certificate programs of the college. A program that is available at both campuses shall be treated as a single unit. In addition, two other academic areas, Developmental Education and Continuing Education/Customized Training, shall also be subject to regular review.
All programs shall be reviewed on a three-year cycle. The Dean of Research and Evaluation shall maintain a master list of programs scheduled for review and shall notify program faculty and staff at least one year before a review is due to be completed.
Review and Approval Process
The Dean who supervises the program that is up for review will be responsible to see that the process moves forward, including establishing a reasonable schedule for completion of all review activities. However, the process of reviewing the program and drafting the report should be a collaborative process between program faculty and responsible administrators. Substantial support from Institutional Research, the Deans, and the Vice President will be provided in areas such as data collection and external information collection.
The process for completing the review will be the following:
a. Program data provided by Institutional Research
b. Program review report drafted by supervising Dean and program faculty, with input from Program Advisory Committee, where applicable
c. Draft report reviewed by Dean of Research and Evaluation
d. Revised draft submitted to Chief Academic Officer for review
e. Final draft submitted to Academic Affairs and Standards Council for approval
The Dean of Research and Evaluation will establish and maintain one or more templates, approved by the Academic Affairs and Standards Council, to be used for the creation of program review reports. The final reports produced may be customized to meet the needs of various programs, but the templates should streamline the drafting process and indicate basic elements that are required for the report.
Liberal Arts and Sciences Discipline Review
Disciplines within the Liberal Arts and Sciences shall complete an annual discipline report form as part of the regular department planning and budgeting process. This report will review the discipline’s contributions to the AA degree program in terms of alignment with program goals, improvements in student learning, and trends in instructional costs. The annual reviews shall form the basis for planning and budgeting for the succeeding academic year within the discipline.
For Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) policies and procedures, go to http://www.mnscu.edu/board/policy/index.html