Activity report from week of January 10 – 16

Assurance Writing Teams

On Monday, I spent time with the teams responsible for writing the assurance arguments that will be the focus of our Higher Learning Commission (HLC) visit in November of 2017.  Over the course of the past six months or so the writing teams have been assembling evidence relevant to the criteria for accreditation of HLC and writing outlines of their assurance narratives.  At this meeting we discussed how to write strong evidentiary statements, the importance of identifying and addressing gaps in our evidence, and the need for transparency when it comes to the shortcomings of our institution.  Over the course of the next several months the writing teams will complete rough drafts of their narratives.  The most difficult part of this assignment will be staying within the 35,000 word limit imposed by HLC on the document produced by the writing teams.

Regents Student Success Committee

Later in the day, the Regents Student Success Committee met.  The highlight of the meeting was a presentation from Vice Provost Greg Heileman and Provost Chaouki Abdallah of the University of New Mexico on the degree mapping and predictive analytics tools that have been developed at the University of New Mexico, with RPSP support from the state of New Mexico.  Over the course of the next several months, the Office of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management will work with Dr. Heileman’s team at UNM to adapt these tools so that they serve the needs of NMSU.

Statewide General Education Summit

On Wednesday, 26 institutions of higher education in the state of New Mexico participated in the Statewide General Education Summit.  At the summit, we discussed the shortcomings of the current general education curriculum in New Mexico and the need for a more streamlined curriculum with greater emphasis on transferable skills essential for lifetime learning and the rapid changes in the workplace that are characteristic of the 21st  I will chair the Statewide General Education Steering Committee, which will have nine months to complete its work and report back to the larger group.  An essential component of this effort will be good two-way communication channels with general education reform groups that will be assembled at each of the colleges and universities in the state.

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