Activity report from week of October 18 – 24

Open Pathway Training

I spent the majority of last week at the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Standard and Open Pathways Training for Peer Reviewers.  I needed the training because the Program to Evaluate and Advance Quality (PEAQ) pathway, for which I was trained as a reviewer six years ago, no longer exists.  All institutions of higher education accredited by HLC are now on one of three pathways: Standard, Open, or Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP).  NMSU is on the Open pathway.  Over the course of three days, we went over standards of conduct, the criteria for accreditation, federal compliance, the central role of evidence in demonstrating that an institution has met the criteria for accreditation, and how to write good evidentiary statements.  Among the discussion items at the training sessions were the following:

  • Institutions of higher education have different missions—understand and respect those missions
  • Shared governance and the proper roles of the faculty, the administration, and the governing board
  • Program quality and the importance of it being consistent, whether delivered online, face-to-face, or at remote locations
  • The role of general education in imparting the broad knowledge and skills that are the hallmark of a college educated individual
  • Faculty qualifications, quality, and evaluations
  • The role of learning assessment in continuous improvement
  • Allocation of resources and its alignment with mission and priorities.

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