Each unit under review conducts a self-study as part of their strategic planning process, focusing on areas of priority to the unit and additional issues highlighted by the PROC and the cognizant dean.
Discussions for completing the self-study are central to the review process. It is expected that the self-study will provide the unit with an opportunity for reflection and critical assessment of the unit’s scholarly directions, as well as a celebration of its achievements and successes. The self-study will show how scholarly directions (i.e., in instruction, research, and service) affect the academic programs of the unit. Katherine Mitchell, an internal consultant from the Academic Program Review team, is available for 10 hours of consulting time to help plan and facilitate discussions ranging from planning the work of the review process to engaging faculty in strategy development.
The self-study should involve an assessment of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges that the unit anticipates over the next eight years. The assessment will draw on any current academic plan of the unit but should go beyond any current plan both in its critique and its plans. Examples of areas that might be selected for in-depth analysis are: undergraduate education, relations with cognate ORUs, departments, or UGIS programs, extramural or private support, matching new research directions and faculty recruitment, or graduate student recruitment. In many instances, the self-study evolves into a strategic plan. (In other cases, a strategic plan is the first step undertaken by the unit at the conclusion of the review.)
The unit’s self-study should include an effort to assess the unit’s curriculum in accordance to the unit’s student learning goals. A consultant from the Academic Program Review team is available to work with the units on this effort. For additional guidance in making this assessment, please see the Assessment Guide for Undergraduate Programs (also included as an appendix to the Program Review Guide). Visit the Instructional Improvement Grants website for information on how to apply for pilot grant funding to support the development of evaluation strategies.
The unit’s faculty are the key players in the development of the self-study; they may also chose to consult with the heads of related academic programs, such as ORUs and institutes. Opportunities for staff, graduate and undergraduate students to provide input to the self-study are essential.