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Overview

UAS has strategically placed self-assessment at the heart of its activities. Through this commitment to continuous self-reflection and improvement, UAS has developed a culture of assessment that guides decision-making institution-wide. A key facet of UAS’s assessment activities is assessing student achievement of pre-defined learning outcomes. The process starts with the development of learning outcomes assessment plans for each academic program, followed by plan implementation, reporting, and ultimately looping back the insights gained from this process into program improvements.

Program reviews, required by Board of Regents policy (see P and R tab or link below), are an integral part of our practice to ensure that we meet UAS’s mission. Reviews focus on data-informed evidence of quality teaching and learning, graduation effectiveness, success of graduates in securing employment or advancing their educational goals, community engagement, adequacy of available resources, alignment with related programs at UAS and across UA, and program elements requiring improvement.  

Key Documents

Review Calendar

The deadline dates will be established by the Provost as reviews are commissioned and review committees are appointed. This calendar shows the months in which various review actions are to take place. A table of degree programs and when they were last reviewed and their next review can be found on the assessment and review schedule tab of the assessment page.

Review Calendar
March 15The Dean/Directors identify a lead person to conduct the review.
September 4UAS Institutional Effectiveness (IE) provides data for all programs that relates to the sections of the review format.
November 14The Program committee completes and submits initial detailed program review document and materials to the department chair.
November 28The Department Chair submits the Program Committee's program review document (Program Review) to the Dean/Director for completeness.
December 5The Dean/Director forwards the Program Review to the Provost's Office. The Provost forwards the Program Review to the Institutional Review Committee (IRC)* for review.
February 5The IRC sends its report and recommendations (IRC Report) to the Provost. The report must provide one of the following recommendations: continuation without change, continuation with change, or discontinuation. The Provost forwards the IRC Report to the Program committee
February 19The Program committee submits a response to the IRC Report to the Dean/Director for review.
March 12The Dean/Director sends the Program Review and the IRC Report reviews to the Provost.
April 2The Provost provides final recommendations to the Chancellor based upon the program review process.

* Institutional Review Committee selected by the Provost

Format for Review

The data used in the review shall consist of the materials from program faculty and UAS IE.

Please use this draft outline to assist in the clarity of the review. This format is pending Faculty Senate approval (posted 9/14/2018).

The program review procedures were developed based on the following University of Alaska Board of Regents policy and regulations.

Board of Regents - Academic Program Review Policy (P10.06.010)

Board of Regents - Academic Program Review Regulations (R10.06.010)

Program reviews assist the faculty, dean, and the university administration in:

  • evaluating the contribution of the program to the mission of the university;
  • evaluating the contribution of the program to the community;
  • evaluating the degree to which the program is achieving its educational goals;
  • identifying the relative strengths and weaknesses of the program;
  • developing plans and priorities for the future of the program;
  • providing appropriate recognition to the program;
  • determining need for change or program improvement; and
  • evaluating the value of the program to the State of Alaska.

Expedited Program Review - A Message from Chancellor Caulfield

UPDATED - March 27, 2020

Dear UAS Community, 

Consistent with guidance from UA President Jim Johnsen, I’ve forwarded to him today our UAS recommendations for FY21 budget reductions based both on expedited program reviews and reviews of all UAS administrative areas. I’ve also provided preliminary information about how UAS anticipates addressing anticipated FY22 budget reductions. You’ll find a copy of my memo summarizing these recommendations here.

These recommendations are based on a thorough review of both academic and administrative programs across our university, recommendations from deans and directors, and input from our Strategic Planning and Budget Advisory Committee (SPBAC). For more information about the process used in bringing these recommendations forward, please see the SPBAC web page.

Following further consultation in coming weeks with the President about these recommendations, we expect those related to academic programs to be presented to the Board of Regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee in April, and to the full Board in June.

Thanks to all who assisted in this challenging task!

Sincerely,

Chancellor Rick Caulfield

[See list below for links to program reviews]

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Expedited Program Review

updated 3/6/2020

To address our FY21 budget challenge, the BOR asked each university last fall to undertake a review of both academic and administrative programs and costs. Here at UAS we asked our Strategic Planning and Budget Advisory Committee (SPBAC)—with representation from governance groups and university leaders—to consider which programs and services are most closely linked to our mission. We've looked closely at Institutional Effectiveness data about program enrollments and completions. We've asked deans and directors to put forward initial ideas about program and cost reductions that would help us achieve our budget reduction targets. In fall 2019, Provost Carey asked faculty in selected programs to undertake expedited academic program reviews, responding to specific questions.

Our focus is on minimizing impacts on students to the greatest degree possible. While some academic program eliminations may be necessary, program streamlining and realignments are more likely. This UAS process parallels similar efforts at UAA and UAF. In late March, UA provosts will meet to look at proposed reductions across all of UA, with a goal of minimizing impacts on students statewide. Here at UAS we will continue to use the SPBAC, with its broad representation, as a primary venue for considering budget reduction options. 

During the month of March, SPBAC members will provide input on programs and services central to our UAS mission, data from Institutional Effectiveness including numbers of majors and graduates over time plus completion rates, and proposals from deans and directors for cuts across our three campuses. In keeping with a request from the Board of Regents, Provost Carey asked in fall 2019 that faculty complete expedited program reviews for the following degrees, certificates, and endorsements: 

Based on expedited reviews in Education and recommendations from Executive Dean Steve Atwater in the Alaska College of Education, UAS has already suspended admissions for the M.Ed. in Mathematics Education, the Mathematics Education graduate certificates, as well as the Educational Technology Graduate Certificate and the Endorsement in Distance Teaching and eLearning. Moreover, at its February meeting, the Board of Regents approved elimination of the M.Ed. in Mathematics Education.

In the School of Arts and Sciences, Dean Thornton is proposing a significant restructure of programs in environmental sciences, drawing upon the outcome of the expedited program review completed by faculty. This restructure would include a proposal to eliminate the BS in Geography and Environmental Resources, which would become part of a broader BS in Environmental Resources. Similarly, the BA in Geography, Environmental, and Outdoor Studies would be eliminated as part of a redesigned and streamlined Environmental Studies degree.

At this time, we do not anticipate other proposals to eliminate UAS degrees, certificates, or OECs. However, reductions in academic and academic support areas are under consideration where faculty positions have become vacant or restructured. 

Timeline for Expedited Program Reviews:

October-November, 2019 - Internal review process begins on selected programs

November 4, 2019 - Academic deans submit recommendations to the Provost

January 31, 2020 - Provost submits recommendations to the Chancellor

March 5, 2020 - UAS Strategic Planning & Budget Committee (SPBAC) Meeting to gather input on recommendations

March 17, 2020 - SPBAC Meeting to provide further input on recommendations

March 19, 2020 - Chancellor's Budget Forum for Faculty and Staff (note a student forum is being planned in conjunction with Student Government but no date is set at this time)

March 23, 2020 - Chancellor's proposals for deletion or major revision in degree or certificate programs submitted to the UA Vice President for Academics, Students & Research (VPASR) and BOR Academic & Student Affairs (ASA) Committee

March 31, 2020 - SPBAC Meeting

Week of April 1st  - UA System Academic Council makes recommendations

April 9, 2020 - UA Board of Regents Public Testimony

Week of April 14th - BOR Academic & Student Affairs Committee makes recommendations

May 26, 2020 - UA Board of Regents Public Testimony

Week of June 5th - BOR announces program reductions, suspended admissions, discontinuations 

 
 

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