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Where planning comes together. T​he power of SCUP is its community. We learn from one another, sharing how we’ve achieved success and, maybe more importantly, what we’ve learned from failure. SCUP authors, produces, and curates thousands of resources to help you prepare for the future, overcome challenges, and bring planning together at your college or university.

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Published
March 26, 2021

Keep on Keepin’ on

Customized Retention Practices Helped Low Income and Single Mom Students to Persist

A support program for low-income and/or single-mother students to improve their persistence and retention was revisited 15 years after it had been launched at Charter Oak State College. Did follow-up with the graduates show that the effort had aided the former participants in obtaining their college degree? Had the collaboration between the institution’s Academic Services, Enrollment Management, and Financial Aid departments—and the support they offered—help the students to persevere? Based on survey results, was the program still of value, and what improvements needed to be made?

From Volume 49 Number 2 | January–March 2021

Abstract: This article is based on follow-up survey research from a doctoral case study that highlighted effective retention practices for low-income and/or single mothers who were students within the Women in Transition (WIT) program at Charter Oak State College. The concept of retention in this instance is an enrollment management practice aimed at maintaining a student population while aiding the institution in sustaining organizational success. Emphasis is placed on the retention concepts of social and academic integration that enabled the specific population to persist and succeed.

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Published
February 26, 2021

American University of Beirut’s Meta-Assessment Framework

Rubrics Improve Evaluation Processes, Set Clear Expectations, and Help in Decision-Making

In a higher education setting, it is important to evaluate assessment processes, establish clear expectations, and efficiently make decisions. Doing so will support program and unit outcomes and periodic program and unit reviews, aligning with the institution’s strategic plan and optimizing budget allocation.

From Volume 49 Number 2 | January–March 2021

Abstract: This article presents a framework for developing a meta-assessment process for evaluating assessment practices in higher education institutions. Meta-assessment is important for improving assessment processes, setting clear expectations, and efficient decision-making. The comprehensive literature on this topic that is included in this article suggests that developing meta-assessment rubrics is an effective method for evaluating assessment. The meta-assessment results can be used in combination with qualitative resources to encourage program self-improvement. At the American University of Beirut, different meta-assessment checklists were developed based on best practices for evaluating program learning outcomes assessment, unit outcomes assessment, periodic program review, and periodic unit review.

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Published
December 11, 2020

Streamlining the Process of Student Success and Persistence

Curriculum Complexity Analyses Can Deploy Timely Academic Support Services

A combination of course prerequisite simplification and focused efforts by academic advising and tutoring services, when and where needed most, can substantially improve student achievement and degree attainment.

From Volume 49 Number 1 | October–December 2020

Abstract: Curriculum complexity impacts several aspects of student success, including time to degree, persistence, and the accumulation of student debt. This article describes the process of measuring and analyzing course prerequisites and sequencing. It outlines strategies to engage campus leadership and faculty in effectively improving curriculum and ensuring that support services are focused on the greatest area of need.

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Published
November 9, 2020

Trends in Accreditation

How Will Accreditors Once Again Become Relevant for Higher Education?

Dr. Lynn Priddy answers questions posed by education writer Stephen G. Pelletier related to changes in accreditation and their effect on institutions and students.

From Volume 49 Number 1 | October–December 2020

Abstract: Having been on both the inside of regional accreditation and outside looking back on it, Lynn Priddy knows that accreditation has long tried to revolutionize itself, while at the same time increasingly becoming subject to federal regulatory burdens and expectations from the Department of Education. That has backed it into becoming a bureaucracy at the very time it needed to break out to focus on innovation, learning, and student success.

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Published
October 2, 2020

Planning for: Changes in Accreditation

Accreditation is rapidly changing, creating new challenges and opportunities for colleges and universities. We interviewed Lynn Priddy, executive advisor and provost emeritus at National American University, to discuss these challenges and opportunities and how institutions can prepare.

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Published
August 27, 2020

Academic Program Portfolio Planning

Preparing to Thrive

In a competitive landscape, it is more important than ever to ensure the programs you offer align with demand in the market. We will discuss the data you need, and where to find it to evaluate market demand for academic programs, including critical data on student demand that is often overlooked.

This is part one of a three-part program series, “Integrated Planning to Build a Thriving Academic Program Portfolio.”

Abstract: This is part one of a three-part program series, “Integrated Planning to Build a Thriving Academic Program Portfolio.” These discussions will help you build a strategic and sustainable program portfolio that is mission-centered, data-informed, student-centered, and focused on growth opportunities.

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Published
August 6, 2020

Collection: Linking Resource Allocation to Planning and Assessment

Integrated planning is important, but it's not enough—plans must be linked to budgeting and assessment in order to create real change and progress. This collection of SCUP resources will help you learn how to link these three essential processes.
Abstract: If you want to ensure planning makes a real difference for your college or university, one of the best things to do is link it to resource allocation and assessment processes. It's also one of the hardest things to do.

This collection of SCUP resources will help advance the connections between planning, budgeting, and assessment at your institution. It includes:
  • An adaptable framework one university used to link assessment, strategic planning, and budgeting
  • Four models for linking budgeting and planning, each based on the budget model your institution employs
  • A step-by-step outline for developing a linked planning and budgeting process
  • Advice for linking planning to a decentralized budgeting model

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Published
August 4, 2020

Collection: Employing Accreditation to Strengthen Planning and Drive Improvement

Accreditation holds far more potential for an organization's strategic and academic planning than most colleges and universities realize. This collection of SCUP resources includes an introduction to accreditation along with examples of how institutions intentionally employ accreditation at multiple levels to strengthen planning and drive improvement.
Abstract: Too often, colleges and universities treat accreditation as a series of compliance exercises: Do we have the right data? Have we submitted the correct documents? Are we ready for a site visit? But accreditation policies and procedures can do more for your institution . . . if they are aligned with integrated planning efforts.

This collection of SCUP resources can help you take the first steps towards leveraging the accreditation process as a driver of quality and strategy. It includes:
  • A brief primer on accreditation for those new to the process
  • Insights on connecting the dots between assessment, analytics, and accreditation at your institution
  • Reflections on quality assurance efforts in developing countries and what they mean for higher education worldwide
  • An example of how one institution used accreditation to supercharge efforts towards improving retention and graduation
  • A discussion of how makerspaces can satisfy certain accreditation standards

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Delivered
July 23, 2020

2020 Annual Conference | July 2020

Critical Concepts and Trends in Assessment, Accreditation, and Program Review

This session will help you define assessment-related terms (i.e. goals, outcomes, objectives, standards, etc.) and will provide an overview of assessment and accreditation trends that could impact your institution.
Abstract: Assessment professionals speak their own (important) language, and it can be hard to keep up with critical terminology and trends. This session will help you define assessment-related terms (i.e. goals, outcomes, objectives, standards, etc.) and will provide an overview of assessment and accreditation trends that could impact your institution. We will also provide an overview of how this landscape is in flux due to COVID-19, and how this may impact higher education.

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Published
April 16, 2020

Can You Trust Your Eyes?

Learn How to Minimize Misinterpretation of Data Reports and Visualizations

Volumes of data are available to administrators to support decision-making. But that doesn’t mean that what’s been presented is accurate. When data are misused or misconstrued, senior leaders at higher education institutions may make the wrong conclusions, ineffective policies may be enacted, and students may not be successful in completing their academic goals.

From Volume 48 Number 2 | January–March 2020

Abstract: Data analytics related to student and institutional performance have evolved quite rapidly—and continue to advance—as the field of data science captures more attention across the higher education sector. And while data-informed decisions can help institutional leaders achieve their goals, there are increasing examples of analyses or visualizations that, when presented without the proper framework, result in misinterpretation and inaccurate conclusions. Context is critical, and erroneous deductions may lead to decisions that adversely affect student performance, program development, and policy changes.

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