Strategic Goal 1: Empower faculty and students to achieve high levels of teaching and learning.
Validated surveys of students and faculty, administered annually, will show an overall 15 percent increase in measures of empowerment over the period 2006-2011.
- Empowerment measures will include questions about adequacy of facilities, adequacy of support, clarity of learning outcomes, degree to which assessments are tied to learning outcomes, degree to which students achieve learning outcomes, and degree to which liberal studies abilities are integrated into (and assessed in) courses across the curriculum.
Action Step 1. Support teaching and learning as the central focus of the institution.
Promote a culture of expectation of excellence.
- Define expectations for faculty and students.
Help faculty achieve expectations of excellence.
- Inform faculty upon hire, in faculty handbook, and during annual reviews.
- Formalize a broad-based system of support so faculty can meet the expectations of excellence (e.g., monthly meetings of probationary faculty with chairs, etc.).
Help students achieve expectations of excellence.
- Inform students of expectations in orientation and student handbook, in pamphlet, and/or on web for all faculty, in detail in Freshman Seminar course.
- Reinforce during each advising appointment, on all syllabi, and throughout each course.
- Publicize and coordinate support services for students (e.g. tutoring and supplemental instruction) on a campus-wide basis (target faculty).
- Improve academic advising and the Advising Center processes to better support successful student learning and academic progress.
Group (conceptually and perhaps physically) all support services for teaching, learning, and professional development and training under an umbrella structure that fosters community around a shared focus.
- For example, include representatives from the Center for Teaching Excellence, Learning Technology Center, Library, deans and chairs, Tutoring and Supplemental Instruction, Human Resources, Liberal Studies committee, Academic Advising Committee.
- Explore possibility of establishing a physical space on campus, which would enhance the process of communication and coordination tremendously.
- Create an active web presence to distribute ideas and discussions throughout the extended campus. (Example: see Indiana University/Purdue University at Indianapolis’ model at http://www.facet.iupui.edu/activities/MackCenter.html; http://www.facet.iupui.edu/index.html)
- Use the Center for Teaching Excellence to coordinate and drive the process of outcomes development and abilities integration.
Action Step 1 Assessment: Student and faculty expectations are communicated in specified places, academic advising demonstrably supports student learning and academic progress, formal faculty development structure is in place, in annual surveys, probationary and other faculty report satisfaction with development provided, student use of tutoring and supplemental instruction increases, and the grouped support services for teaching and learning constitute a highly visible, active hub of academic life for students, faculty and staff.
Action Step 2: Maximize facilities (virtual and physical) for effective teaching and learning.
- Develop a widely-representative committee to drive this action step (faculty, academic support staff, technical experts, teaching and development experts, students).
Identify current student and faculty satisfaction and identify facilities strengths and weaknesses through a survey carried out by Office of Institutional Research in collaboration with colleges/schools.
- Include every classroom and lab.
- Ask about lighting, noise, size, seating (quality/size/number), air quality, temperature, ease of access/ADA, ease of use for group work/interaction, and/or other types of teaching, technology (video projector, computer with internet access), security.
- Include information technology facilities such as barriers to use of Vista, email, web site, wireless access, bandwidth adequacy, single access portal for all technology, networking uptime issues
- Explore use of data from IDEA forms related to facilities.
- Identify gaps
- Research best practices in educational facility design
- Make recommendations for improvements
- Determine resources required
- Prioritize and implement recommended changes
- Measure trends in student and faculty satisfaction with facilities/classroom effectiveness for teaching and learning.
Action Step 2 Assessment: Student and faculty satisfaction with facilities (virtual and physical) for teaching and learning, as measured by a survey, will show at least a 20 percent increase between 2006 and 2011.
Action Step 3: Support learning through a fully outcomes-based curriculum.
- Develop a standardized format for reporting student learning outcomes and assessments, and disseminate it through the Center for Teaching Excellence in collaboration with Academic Affairs.
- Broadly engage faculty in faculty development workshops focused on writing effective learning outcomes and tying assessments to learning outcomes.
- Develop program objectives for majors (program faculty responsibility).
- Develop objectives for the liberal studies curriculum (general faculty responsibility through the Liberal Studies Committee).
- Develop learning outcomes and incoming expectations for all graduate courses and add to syllabi in a standardized format.
- Develop learning outcomes and incoming expectations all undergraduate courses and add to syllabi in a standardized format.
- Tie assessments to learning outcomes in all graduate and undergraduate courses.
Action Step 3 Assessment: As verified by Academic Affairs and its analog in the community and technical college, every course syllabus will include a list of expected student learning outcomes in a standard format, and assessments in all courses will be demonstrably tied to learning outcomes. Objectives for the liberal studies curriculum and for each major will be developed by faculty and published by the Center for Teaching Excellence in collaboration with Academic Affairs and its analog in the community and technical college.
Action Step 4: Integrate the development of the following liberal education abilities across the college experience:
- Charge a committee to review and update the “Fairmont State Graduate Profile.”
- Consult with Liberal Studies Committee to define abilities and to determine how the abilities are manifested in the objectives for the liberal studies curriculum.
- Focus faculty development workshops on definitions of abilities and how they can be assessed across diverse disciplines.
- Identify which abilities are covered in all graduate courses and add to syllabi in a standardized format.
- Identify which abilities are covered in all undergraduate courses and add to syllabi in a standardized format.
- Identify where all abilities are covered within each major (program faculty responsibility).
- Determine appropriate progression of abilities (fill in gaps if needed).
- Identify assessments of relevant abilities for every course.
Action Step 4 Assessment: As verified by Academic Affairs and its analog in the community and technical college, the graduate profile is updated, and every course syllabus will include a list of abilities developed in the course and assessments used to track student progress on the abilities.