Reinhardt University SACSCOC Compliance Certification

 

2.5 Institutional Effectiveness

The institution engages in ongoing, integrated, and institution-wide research-based planning and evaluation processes that (1) incorporate a systematic review of institutional mission, goals, and outcomes; (2) result in continuing improvement in institutional quality; and (3) demonstrate the institution is effectively accomplishing its mission. (Institutional effectiveness)

Judgment check box Compliance

Narrative

Reinhardt University (RU) engages in strategic planning, operational planning, and institutional effectiveness for continuous improvement, which are all linked to the budget.

Three Planning and Evaluation Processes to Demonstrate Effectiveness

Reinhardt University (RU) engages in three planning and evaluation processes:  1) Strategic Planning (SP), 2) Operational Planning (OP), and 3) Institutional Effectiveness (IE). These processes demonstrate 4) Reinhardt’s commitment to mission-Driven, data-informed strategic planning, assessment, and continuous improvement.

1. Strategic Planning (SP)

Reinhardt engages in systematic, campus-wide strategic planning to further its mission. RU’s mission is to “educate the whole person by developing the intellectual, social, personal, vocational, spiritual and physical dimensions of its students.”  To ensure that this mission is achieved, RU participates in ongoing, integrated, University-wide, research-based planning.

RU Strategic Planning Model

To demonstrate institutional effectiveness in an observable, measurable, and quantifiable manner, RU has adopted a planning and evaluation model that integrates strategic planning at the university level with ongoing unit-level planning and assessment activities.  The model is based on a five-year strategic planning cycle that identifies institutional strategic objectives based on feedback from the faculty, staff, and students and an analysis of educational needs in the region.  Strategic initiatives supporting institutional themes and objectives are defined and metrics of success are identified for theme.  The strategic planning process also requires an evaluation plan for each strategic objective and use of assessment results to improve educational outcomes. The evaluation plan and assessment results report are used to make necessary adjustments in programs and services.  The strategic plan then drives operational planning at the program or unit level.  A visual representation of the model is presented in Figure 2.5-1.

Strategic Planning Activities

The RU Board of Trustees, through its delegated authority, defines, reviews, and updates RU's mission, vision, values, and strategic priorities in conjunction with updates to the University’s Strategic Plan (generally scheduled every five years). Updates on progress toward the University Strategic Plan, which are presented to the trustees, also provide an opportunity for RU's Board of Trustees to review and update the mission, vision, values, and strategic priorities, as appropriate.

Reinhardt’s Presidents have updated the University’s strategic plan twice since the last decennial review by the SACS Commission on Colleges. Each strategic plan has included broad-based input from the greater RU community, has been aligned with RU’s mission, and has sought the trustees’ input into the strategic planning process. [1]

2010-2015 Strategic Plan

In 2010, President Isherwood established a comprehensive strategic planning process, which resulted in the strategic plan entitled Excellence at Reinhardt. [2] The development of the planning document took approximately 18 months to initiate and involved campus-wide participation in systematic reviews, focus groups, feedback opportunities campus-wide and passage through the University’s collegial governance structures. The plan received the Board of Trustees’ approval in 2010. Excellence at Reinhardt was divided into seven themes: 1) Reinhardt Experience, 2) Excellence in Support and Services, 3) Excellence in Creativity, 4) Excellence in Standards, 5) Facilities, 6) Administrative Structure, and 7) Financial Stability.

The integration of the strategic plan at the unit level was achieved through Program Development Plans.  In accordance with the 2010-2015 Strategic Plan, all academic major programs were directed by President Isherwood to create a Program Development Plan (PDP). See Guidelines for Program Development Plans [3] and an example of a PDP. [4] Programs were asked to assess the current state of their major including number of majors, number of upper level classes offered, enrollment in upper level classes, student load per faculty member, number of courses taught by adjuncts and by full-time faculty, and overall credit hour generation within the major, including general education hours.  Data compiled from this assessment were maintained for a three year period. Faculty developed program goals for a three year period for every major and included target number of majors and target minimum class size in lower and upper level courses.

At the conclusion of the plan, the Provost’s Office conducted a comprehensive evaluation of the extent to which the strategic goals were achieved. In total, the plan established 69 strategic goals.  Three of the 69 goals were “overall” objectives categorized under the theme “Reinhardt Experience”; the three overall goals were related to 1) Creating a Safe and Supportive Campus; 2) Increasing Student Enrollment; and 3) Launching Traditional and Non-Traditional Academic Programs. Thirty-nine (39) of the 69 strategic goals were “Completed.” Overall, Reinhardt accomplished 56% of its plan. Thirteen (13) of the 69 strategic goals were “Partially Completed.” This means that 20% of the plan was partially achieved. Fourteen (14) of the 69 strategic goals were “Not Completed.” This means that 18% of the plan was not accomplished. [5]

As shown in the Provost’s report on the 2010-15 strategic plan, some of the improvements that resulted from the 2010-2015 strategic plan include:

  • The creation of new program offerings for non-traditional students including Bachelor of Criminal Justice, Bachelor of Healthcare Administration, Master of Music, and Master of Public Administration.
  • Deans’ Scholarships were developed to offer additional financial aid beyond the Academic Scholarship for recognized students of excellence in discipline specific majors.
  • Targeted student orientation was implemented for non-traditional students regarding registration, financial responsibilities and financial aid options, information technology support and instructional support; a Financial Aid advisor has been designated to work with these students.
  • A Student Operations Committee was formed to assess our student data management system and set standards of operation and make recommendations for change. The committee met regularly to problem-solve processing issues. The VP for Enrollment Management chaired the committee.
  • A new general education core curriculum based on the General Education Student Learning Outcomes was implemented; the course options guided an increased understanding by students of their personal and social responsibility.
  • The University added new science facilities and resources to support biological education.  The new building attracted new students to Reinhardt as enrollments in Biology grew at a sustained pace in recent years.

2016-2021 Strategic Plan

During the Fall of 2016, President Mallard organized a series of events to obtain a broad-based input from the greater RU community that will shape the priorities for the next strategic plan. A series of “Chat n’ Chew” focus groups was organized with the following campus constituents: Faculty and Staff (170 participants), Board of Trustees, Dean/Directors, and Current Traditional Students. Five key questions guided these discussions:

1. What one word or phrase would you currently use to describe Reinhardt University?

2.  Five years from now Reinhardt University will be known as THE __________________________ (fill in the blank).

3. What is holding the University back from becoming the future that we talked about in question #2?

4.  If a donor gave the university a million dollars, but said we could only spend it in one area, what area would you spend it on?

5. In five years, how should Reinhardt be different?

Feedback from these focus groups was analyzed and summarized by CREDO, a consulting company that assisted the University with the strategic planning process. The results led to the establishment of a preliminary RU strategy map. CREDO also sought the trustees’ input during the 9/25/16 Board of Trustees meeting. In December 2016, the Leadership Team held a two-day planning retreated at CREDO’s office in North Carolina to refine the strategy map.

In addition to the focus groups with students, faculty, and staff, the University engaged STAMATS, a higher education consulting firm, to analyze opportunities for new programs at both graduate and undergraduate levels. The analysis identified the disciplines/subject areas that have the highest net deficit in the number of degrees awarded in the regional footprint identified by Reinhardt for each location and degree level.  The analysis further identified a few options for each location that the University considered based on the mission and current academic infrastructure of Reinhardt, as well as STAMATS’ knowledge about certain degree fields and the needs of adult students. The analysis revealed among others that there is opportunity for an upward trend in nursing degrees. [6]

Following the market analysis provided by STAMATS, the Office of Institutional Research conducted a comprehensive Feasibility Study for a BSN program. The University used results from this analysis to establish a BSN program at Reinhardt. The program received development approval by the Georgia Board of Nursing to start in January 2018 and is currently under review by SACSCOC.

Results from the analysis of the internal and external environment and the preliminary strategy map were presented to the university community by President Mallard in a town hall meeting on January 12, 2016 [7].  Later during the month of January, President Mallard scheduled discussions with faculty, staff, students, and trustees to further revise the preliminary strategy map. The final Strategy Map was approved by the Leadership Team and the Board of Trustees in 2016. [1]

The new strategic plan became the University’s roadmap for defining strategic objectives in support of allocating resources to serve Reinhardt’s mission and vision. It commits the University to three themes—Reinhardt Moves, Reinhardt Learns, and Reinhardt Connects. The strategic plan also identifies metrics of success, strategic objectives and initiatives for each theme.  Figure 2.5-2 presents the Reinhardt's Strategic Plan.

Figure 2.5-2 Reinhardt University Strategic Plan

 

Subsequently, the Leadership Team defined initiatives in support of each strategic objective along with milestones to be met and leaders (“owners”) responsible for the implementation and metrics for each theme. A Strategic Planning Steering Committee was formed to coordinate the implementation of the plan and recommend new initiatives to the Leadership Team, as existing initiatives are being completed.  The committee seeks ideas for new initiatives from faculty and staff.

Subsequently, the Leadership Team defined initiatives in support of each strategic objective along with milestones to be met and leaders (“owners”) responsible for the implementation and metrics for each theme. A Strategic Planning Steering Committee was formed to coordinate the implementation of the plan and recommend new initiatives to the Leadership Team, as existing initiatives are being completed.  The committee seeks ideas for new initiatives from faculty and staff.

The Leadership Team conducts a monthly implementation update to ensure that the objectives identified in the plan are being met.  Initiative owners are asked to report each month on the status of implementation of their initiative(s). [8] Selected monthly RU Strategic Plan Updates for the 2016-17 academic year provide evidence of continuous improvement activities and budget commitments with respect to the implementation of the Strategic Plan. See example of monthly updates. [9] Each monthly update conducted by the Leadership Team is shared with the Deans and the University Steering Planning Committee.  At larger forums, the President uses the latest monthly updates to inform the university community about progress with the Strategic Plan. As initiatives are completed, new initiatives or adjustments to existing initiatives are proposed by the Strategic Planning Steering Committee, based on ideas advanced from faculty and staff.

To ensure integration of planning, evaluation, and continuous improvement across organizational levels, Reinhardt’s schools and divisions, in 2016-17, created strategy maps that link their strategy objectives to the university strategic objectives. In turn, units link their operational outcomes and objectives to the divisional strategic objectives.  Figure 2.5-3 illustrates the various channels of reporting updates on the strategic plan through the University.

Figure 2.5-3. Reporting on Strategic Plan Implementation

Type of Report   Responsibility Frequency of Reporting
RU SP Initiative Update Initiative Owner Monthly
Academic Program Assessment Report

Administrative Unit Assessment Report

Program Coordinator

 

Unit Director

Annually

 

Annually

School Annual Report

Division Annual Report

Dean

VP

Annually

Annually

 

Input from the Deans and Directors Leadership Council

The Deans and Directors Leadership Council is a group of faculty, staff, and administrators who serve in an advisory capacity to the President and executive administration to identify and address issues important to the University. Established by President Mallard in January 2016, The Council offers recommendations and perspectives on various issues and University policies and procedures, and it serves as a sounding board for new ideas and institutional initiatives that have the potential to impact the overall success and viability of RU, especially anticipated economic challenges. The Council meets minimally once each semester.  At the November 30, 2016 meeting, the President also invited the Strategic Planning Steering Committee as well as the Leadership Team to discuss updates on the Strategic Plan process.  See invitation [10] and presentation to the Council in the supporting documentation. [11]

Campus Master Plan

The Campus Master Plan is based on the goals and objectives of the Strategic Plan and includes a detailed space needs analysis, infrastructure assessment, and determination of long-term deferred maintenance needs and priorities. Capital projects (new buildings and renovations), infrastructure, and property purchases are defined and implemented. [12]

2. Operational Planning

Execution of Reinhardt’s Strategic Plan is carried out through three distinct operational planning and evaluation processes, all supporting and contributing to the objectives of the Strategic Plan.  The operational planning processes employed by Reinhardt include:

  1. Academic Program Reviews and Specialized Accreditations– comprehensive reviews of all academic degree programs. Academic program reviews are conducted on a 7-year cycle.
  2. Unit Planning and Assessment— ongoing, institution-wide process of planning and assessment focused on supporting achievement of the university’s mission, strategic objectives, and continuous improvement. Unit planning is conducted on an annual cycle through assessment reports. Likewise, the general education curriculum is assessed each year as part of the RU General Education Assessment Plan.
  3. Planning Roadmaps within the Move the Needle initiative, a project focused on improving the persistence of students to complete a degree.

Academic Program Reviews and Specialized Accreditations

Beginning in the 2016-17 academic year, Reinhardt University initiated a comprehensive academic program review process as a major component of the institution’s overall planning and evaluation efforts. Academic unit reviews are conducted on a seven-year cycle. Program reviews evaluate:

  • the effectiveness of a program;
  • its achievement of the program’s students and faculty;
  • the various relationships of the program within the University;
  • the program’s needs for physical and fiscal resources;
  • the progress of the program in relation to Strategic Planning initiatives over a review period and to make recommendations for improvement.

In addition, many academic programs at Reinhardt University undergo periodic reviews by specialized accrediting bodies. See Figure below:

Figure 2.5-5 Reinhardt Programs Undergoing Specialized Accreditation

Academic Program Accrediting Agency Accredited Most Recent Review Next Review
Music Education (B.M.E.)

NASM

Yes

2011

Spring 2018

Music Performance (B.M.)

NASM

Yes

2011

Spring 2018

Sacred Music  (B.M.)

NASM

Yes

2011

Spring 2018

Musical Theatre (B.F.A)

NASM

Yes

2011

Spring 2018

Biology Education (B.S.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

Early Childhood Education (P-5) (B.S.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

Early Childhood Education (P-5) (M.A.T.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

English/Language Arts Education (6-12)(B.S.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

Mathematics Education (6-12) (B.S.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

Middle Grades Education (4-8) (B.S.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

Music Education (P-12) (B.M.E.)

GA PSC

Yes

2010

Fall 2018

At RU, an academic program review includes a self-study, a review of trend data for the program, a review by an on-site team (including an external consultant), and recommendations for improvement.  An example of self-study has been included as evidence [13]. RU posts the guidelines and the schedule for academic program reviews on the OIRE site on the University’s intranet. [1415]

The academic program reviews are critical to the success of the continuous improvement cycle. Other examples of academic program review reports are included with the narrative for Comprehensive Standard 3.3.1.1, and include references to how academic programs use evaluation results for continuous improvement of policies, curriculum, programming, student learning, and the assessment processes themselves.

At the institutional level, RU uses the information gathered during the program reviews to guide decisions about needed improvements; the allocation and deployment of resources (fiscal, human, and facilities); and decisions regarding new program planning, development, expansion, and/or termination.

Unit Planning and Assessment

Each administrative unit is required to prepare an annual assessment report that identifies outcomes/objectives and, in the case of academic units, student learning outcomes for degree programs, for which measures are identified, assessment is performed, and based on assessment results, improvements are made. Learning outcomes assessment is student-centered, decentralized, and systematic and incorporates the use of multiple measures, i.e., major field tests, capstone learning experiences, and course-embedded assessments. Likewise, annual objectives/outcomes set by administrative, academic and student support units are assessed through both direct and indirect methods.

This process is documented with an Annual Assessment report completed by the unit. See example of a unit assessment report for Professional and Graduate Admissions. [16]

General Education Planning and Assessment

Reinhardt University has established a plan for the annual assessment of the general education curriculum.  [17] Using a mixed of methods, including the National Survey of Student Engagement, the ETS Proficiency profile and embedded assessments demonstrate that the University is accomplishing its mission of educating the “whole person.” [18]

Move the Needle Project Roadmaps

The University engages in special University-wide planning initiatives.  These special projects are performed over the course of the implementation of the current Strategic Plan in anticipation of the impact these initiatives might have on the achievement of key strategic objectives. An example of such initiatives is the Move the Needle (MTN), launched in 2016.  MTN seeks to put student success, persistence and graduation at the center of our operation.  In order to have a positive impact, Reinhardt established eight “modules” made up of selected faculty and staff members.  The “modules” focus the institution’s attention on areas that will have the greatest impact.

Through these eight modules, the University identified educational improvements to be made and support gaps to be addressed to improve student success. Each module has a planning document called the Roadmap, which is a working set of goals and strategies intended to result in increased progression, accomplishment, and graduation of students. The roadmaps outline actions to be taken with a timeline and responsible parties and were developed based on data. Several modules will enter in their second year of implementing the roadmap. Many of the modules already made significant progress in implementing their roadmap. For instance, the First Year Seminar Module has revamped the content of the FYS seminar and obtained approval from the Faculty Senate to start the revised courses and the Early Alert System has implemented Pharos 360, an early alert system meant to improve communications and coordination related to interventions.  The planning work of these modules along with some of the 2016-17 improvements based on this work is summarized [19] in the supporting documentation, which also includes the planning roadmap for each module.  [2021222324252627]

The MTN project is coordinated at the university level by a leadership team which includes the facilitators for each module. [28] At each meeting, module facilitators report to the team roadblocks and challenges (“parking issues”) in their module that can be addressed by the central administration. [29] The Provost takes these “parking lot issues” to the Leadership Team to discuss solutions. [30]

Updates on the improvements made in each module are periodically communicated by the Provost to the entire RU community. [31] In addition, module facilitators share minutes of their meeting minutes with the MTN Leadership Team. [32] A group website has been established by the Provost on OneDrive to organize the work achieved by the MTN project. [33]

3. Institutional Effectiveness (IE) Structure and Processes

Results of the RU's planning and evaluation processes guide decision-making at all levels to support the continuous improvement of programs and services consistent with its mission. RU has a mature institutional effectiveness (IE) structure and process, which ensures continuous improvement.

RU’s internal IE structure permeates all levels of the University. The President is responsible for the oversight of the University’s IE processes, and each divisional vice-president is responsible for continuous improvement processes within their division.

Similar to the nested approach RU uses for strategic planning, the University’s IE processes are on-going, integrated, institution-wide, research- based, and aligned across multiple levels. The University integrates the results of diverse assessment efforts to provide a sound basis for plans aimed at institution-wide improvement.  These processes include annual assessment reports, the University Dashboard, specialized accreditations and program reviews, audits, surveys, and special reports.

Annual Unit Assessment Reports

The mission of each program/unit is guided by the University’s mission and the objectives/outcomes it identifies are in alignment with the University’s Strategic Plan objectives. Each administrative, academic and student support unit reports annually on progress related to their operational objectives. Unit objectives align to RU’s strategic objectives. Improvements are made based on the analysis of assessment results. The unit has the option to continue an objective, revise an objective, or establish new objective(s) because the former one has been met. This process is informed by the information gleaned from the assessment process.

Starting with 2016-17, the objectives of the administrative units are also tied to divisional strategic objectives, which in turn are derived from University strategic objectives. See divisional strategy maps. [34] Currently, the academic programs link their learning outcomes to the University Student Learning outcomes. To allow for vertical integration of the strategic plan, the schools developed strategy maps during Spring 2017, which connect their strategic objectives to the university strategic objectives. [35] Starting with the 2017-18 academic year, academic programs will add program objectives to the program learning outcomes already being assessed and link them to the school’s strategic objectives, which are aligned to the RU strategic objectives via a strategy map.

Each vice-president oversees the IE process and reporting for their division and the unit directors are asked to submit their assessment reports to their vice-president for review and to the Director of Institutional Research & Effectiveness for further feedback. In the Division of Academic Affairs, the Dean is the designated official for each school to ensure annual assessment reports for academic programs include student learning outcomes assessment and use of assessment results to improve learning.  For each degree program, the program coordinator is responsible for managing the assessment process throughout the academic year, collecting the necessary data from faculty, aggregating assessment results, deciding along with other program faculty on changes to be implemented next year, and ensuring that changes proposed in the previous year are implemented.  See all assessment reports by division, unit, and/or degree program for the years 2014-2015, 2015-2016, and 2016-2017 in CS 3.3.1.1 – 3.3.1.3.

Like the results from the General Education Assessment reports, the findings from program and unit assessment reports demonstrate that Reinhardt is achieving its mission of educating the “whole person.”

 Annual School Reports

At the end of each academic year, the deans prepare an annual report which highlights accomplishments of faculty and students, analyzes the strengths and areas of improvement in student learning based on the program assessment reports, proposes changes for next year and identifies budget implications. In addition, schools are asked to respond to accomplishments or shortcomings of goal achievement articulated in previous annual report, identify goals and measurement of those goals for coming academic year, and identify three long-term (5-year) goals and measurement of those goals for the school. See example of School Annual Report. [36] Using the annual reports from the deans, the Provost prepares for the Leadership Team an executive summary that aggregates and summarizes the information from the schools. [37]

Reinhardt University Dashboard

In 2016, as part of developing a plan for monitoring progress toward the Strategic Plan, University leaders worked with the Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness to develop a dashboard with key performance indicators. [3839]  Updates to the dashboard are presented two times per year to the trustees.

Audits, Surveys, Tests, Other Reviews and Special Reports

Institutional effectiveness efforts at RU also include audits of financial aid operations and administrative program reviews. Audits and risk analyses offer areas for improvement within unit operations and processes. Successful completion of an audit with no significant findings, or the implementation of follow-up corrective action in response to findings, demonstrates that the activities of a unit do not contradict the mission of the University. From time to time, the University commissions external consultants to review critical areas of the University's operations. For instance, during Summer of 2017 an external review of the Information Technology area was performed.

RU also administers an array of surveys on a cyclical basis. For instance, RU utilizes results from the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) to monitor students’ perceptions of their engagement with the University and to determine how many students have participated in a range of high-impact learning experiences while at RU.  One of the ways RU is using information from the NSSE for improvement is through the development of the University’s current Quality Enhancement Plan. For instance the data showed that RU seniors are less involved in High Impact Practices than students at peer universities, which led to the development of a proposals to ensure capstone experiences in each major. [40]  In addition, results from NSSE are used as part of the General Education Assessment Plan [18]. See item #5 in the General Education Assessment Plan.

The University also administers current student surveys [41] and alumni surveys [42] during programs review to garner more feedback from students and alumni regarding their experiences at and perceptions of RU. In Fall 2016, the University used the ETS SuccesNavigator survey [43] to better understand the perceptions of incoming freshmen vis-à-vis.  Results indicated that a large percentage of freshmen have test anxiety and need help to handle stress. Results were used by advisors during the advising sessions to offer coping strategy and will also inform programming in the Counselor Office.  The Noel-Levitz Student Satisfactory is also administered every other year when NSSE is not conducted. [44]

In addition to the surveys conducted by RU offices, in 2016, the university employed CREDO to conduct a series of surveys aimed at understating why students come to Reinhardt, why they leave and why they stay. [4546] Results of these surveys have been used to guide the reshaping of the new Orientation as students indicate that they like interactions with faculty. Observations, interviews, and focus groups conducted by CREDO have also led to the early formulation of areas of improvement that eventually led to the creation of the eight MTN modules. [47] RU has used the feedback from these assessments to make a number of improvements at the University. For instance, many of the institution’s efforts to change the traditional undergraduate collegiate experience have been informed by this input.

4. RU’s Commitment to Mission-Driven, Data-Informed Strategic Planning, Assessment, and Continuous Improvement

Reinhardt University is committed to data-informed planning, assessment, and continuous improvement.  This commitment is demonstrated through ensuring an adequate infrastructure, sharing of institutional effectiveness data, and linking budget development to assessment results.

Infrastructure to Support Institution-Wide, Integrated Planning, Assessment, and Continuous Improvement Efforts

RU has institutional infrastructures and multiple processes supporting the development of meaningful assessment practices and promoting assessment as a routine component of effective development and management of academic programs.

The Office of Institutional Research & Effectiveness provides ongoing support of faculty development of skills in assessment, use of assessment evidence to implement improvements in teaching and learning, and other professional development through workshops and targeted assessment projects. The OIRE Director offers regular workshops and consultations with program coordinators, administrative unit directors, and individual faculty members on assessment practices. [48] OIRE collaborates with many of the MTN modules on campus to facilitate special assessment projects. For instance, OIRE worked with the Orientation module to develop evaluations for the revamped New Student Orientation that started in the summer of 2017.  For the Early Alert Module, data analysis support was provided in generating reports on retention and interpretation of the SuccessNavigator results.

OIRE’s role is to advance RU's mission, vision, and effectiveness by facilitating integrated strategic planning, assessment, institutional intelligence, and research to support data-informed decision making, policy formation, budgeting, programming, and continuous improvement at the University. The OIRE Director, working in collaboration with staff from Information Technology Services, manage data collection, analysis, and dissemination at the University to provide a consistent, accurate basis for planning, decision-making, and the assessment of institutional effectiveness. The staff also support the development and implementation of strategic enrollment planning and management models at the University by assembling and analyzing data related to student enrollment, progression, and success, as well as by designing predictive models to help inform related policy and strategy development. OIRE provides leadership, guidance, and resources to support institutional and unit strategic planning, assessment and evaluation, and the use of results for accountability, continuous improvement, and quality enhancement to advance the University’s mission, vision, and effectiveness. Multiple resources to support the integration of data- informed strategic planning, assessment and evaluation, and use of results for decision making and continuous improvement are maintained on the OIRE website in EagleWeb, the University’s Intranet.

To facilitate the integration of assessment and planning efforts related to student success and move the work of the Early Alert Committee to a new level of sophistication, RU purchased a license of Pharos 360 in the summer of 2016. The Pharos 360 software provides a common platform for all units throughout the University to refer students for help and monitor interventions.

Shared Institutional Effectiveness Data

The chart below describes the annual assessment process for academic programs, illustrating how results are shared at different levels of the organization to inform planning and budgeting. A similar process exists for the administrative and educational and student support (AES) units.

 

Institutional Effectiveness Processes Linked to Budget

At Reinhardt, assessment results are used to make budget decisions, thus closing the assessment and budget loop to assure continuous improvement. This is achieved each year through the University’s assessment reporting and budget submission processes:

  1. In the annual assessment report, academic program coordinators and unit directors are asked to specify the budget implications for each change proposed based on the assessment results. See example of program assessment report. [49]
  1. In the budget request template, unit directors are asked to link each additional request for funds to assessment findings and relevant RU strategic objectives. See annual budget instructions and template. [50515253]

Annual Assessment Reports are reviewed systematically and continuously to ensure that the University's strategic objectives and student learning outcomes are accomplished as defined in the mission. Academic deans, division vice presidents, and the Deans’ Council review the reports in accordance with the annual IE and budget cycles. In their annual report to the Provost, Deans are asked to summarize the assessment findings and prioritize requests for additional resources. [54]

RU's recent achievements under the implementation of the current strategic plan provide further evidence of the integration of planning and evaluation processes with IE and budget processes to support its mission.

  • In Spring 2017, RU received ongoing initial approval from the Georgia Board of Nursing to launch a BSN program starting in January 2017. Interest in the program is positive with over 100 first-year inquiries;
  • A record number of applications has been received for Fall 2017 as a result of the recent investment into Salesforce software in the Admissions Office;
  • 2016-17 was a record year for fundraising with more than 5 million being raised before the end of FY 2017;
  • The Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees approved the B.S. in Cybersecurity, which expands the pipeline of program offerings.

Specific IE processes for educational programs, including student learning outcomes, administrative support services, academic and student support services, research and creative activity, and community/public service are described in detail in Comprehensive Standards 3.3.3.1, 3.3.1.2, 3.3.1.3 and Federal Mandate 4.1.

The President's annual State of the University Address [55] to faculty, staff and administrators occurs one week before the Fall classes begin. Meetings throughout the academic year serve to provide the RU community an update on the Strategic Plan and the achievements of the University over the past academic year. Reinhardt Recap, the President’s Newsletter, serves as the primary vehicle through which RU's success in meeting its goals is communicated to the university community.

Conclusion

The mission statement serves as the foundation for all University activities, operations, strategic planning, budgeting, and University-wide continuous improvement efforts. Moreover, RU’s evaluation processes are systematic. The system engages educational and administrative units across the university in reviewing their mission, objectives, and outcomes. The results presented here demonstrate that Reinhardt University is effectively accomplishing its mission to educate the whole person.

 

Supporting Documents

[1] Board of Trustees Minutes 1/26/2016

[2] Excellence at Reinhardt – Strategic Plan 2010-2015

[3]       Program Development Guidelines

[4]       Sport Studies Development Program 2012-13

[5]       Assessment Report for Strategic Plan 2010-15

[6]       Reinhardt New Programs STAMATS Report

[7]       Strategic Plan Presented at Town Hall Meeting 1/12/16

[8]       Strategic Planning Progress Report

[9]       Updates on Reinhardt Moves June 2017

[10]     Invitation to Leadership Council

[11]     Leadership Council Presentation 12 07 2015

[12]     Campus Master Plan

[13]     Program Review – CMS Self-Study

[14]     Academic Program Review Guidelines

[15]     Program Review Schedule

[16]     2016-17 AES Assessment Report –PSGA

[17]     RU General Education Assessment Plan

[18]     RU General Education Assessment Report, 2015-16

[19]     Summary of Move the Needle Modules

[20]     RU Clearance Roadmap

[21]     Early Alert Map

[22]     FYS Roadmap

[23]     FYE Roadmap

[24]     Orientation Roadmap

[25]     Academic Advising Roadmap

[26]     Athletics Roadmap

[27]     Residential Living and Learning Education Roadmap

[28]     MTN Leadership, Chairs, Facilitators, and Members

[29]     MTN Leadership Meeting Agenda 3 23 17

[30]     MTN Parking Lot Issues

[31]     MTN Update 9 27 2016

[32]     Clearance Module Minutes

[33]     MTN Website in OneDrive

[34]     Division Strategy Maps

[35]     Price School of Education Strategy Map

[36]     A&H School Annual Report, 2015-16

[37]     RU Academic Affairs Annual Report Executive Summary, 2015-16

[38]     RU Dashboard, Fall 2016

[39]     RU Dashboard, Spring 2017

[40]     RU NSSE 2016 Report of Findings

[41]     CMS Student Survey Results

[42]     CMS Alumni Survey Results

[43]     SuccessNavigator Results for Reinhardt

[44]     2016-17 Noel Levitz SSI

[45]     Reinhardt University ASR 2016 Report

[46]     Reinhardt MTN Data Summary Presentation 11 03 2016

[47]     March 17, 2016 MTN ACE

[48]     AES Assessment Workshop, June 16 2015

[49]     MPA Academic Program Assessment Report, 2015-16

[50]     2017-18 Budget Instructions

[51]     2016-17 Budget Instructions

[52]     RU Budget Process Proposal for 2016-17

[53]     Budget Template Example

[54]     A&H School Annual Report, 2015-16

[55]     2016 RU State of the University Address