Action Plan for the University Strategic Plan



2003 Action Plan - Priorities

Recruitment & Retention of Students | Undergraduate Experience | Graduate Experience and Research | Academic Programs & Faculty | Connection to the Greater Community | Infrastructure/Support Improvement

Undergraduate Experience

Strengthening Student Learning

Learning Communities

Freshmen Learning Communities will continue to expand to serve 800 students for fall 2003. Retention data from fall 1999 and 2000 has been analyzed for guidance on improvements. Advanced Learning Communities will be continued.

Gateway Courses

Examination of large-enrollment courses in which students historically have earned a high number of W, D, or F grades will continue. Various learning enhancement strategies will be piloted in some of these gatekeeper courses in order to transform them into gateway courses and hence increase retention rates.

Plus/Minus Grading

A policy that allows plus/minus grading will be advocated to the Board of Regents. With the conversion of the Student Information Systems to GoSOLAR, technical barriers to implementation of a plus/minus system have been eliminated. In addition to making student GPAs a more accurate reflection of student accomplishment, plus/minus grading has a salutary effect on grade inflation.

Student Learning Outcomes

There will be further development of student learning outcomes for both General Education and majors. Appointment of a Senior Faculty Associate for Student Learning Outcomes has brought a continuing focus to this initiative. All departments will continue to refine outcomes for their majors. Academic Program Review includes examination of student learning outcomes for programs to which a department contributes. Pilots for learning outcomes based on high standards will continue to be developed in biology, English, history, and mathematics as part of a national project. In addition, performance assessments for admission to the university as freshmen or transfer students developed in conjunction with four two-year and three other four-year System institutions will be piloted at selected high schools.

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