The North Central Association’s (NCA) Higher Learning Commission (HLC) visited Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in mid-March. SIUE met all of the accreditation and compliance standards required in the HLC’s Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP).
The HLC conducts Quality Checkup visits to institutions during the fifth or sixth year in every seven-year cycle of AQIP participation. The visits determine whether the institution continues to meet the HLC’s criteria for accreditation, uses quality management principles and builds a culture of continuous improvement as AQIP participation requires.
Dr. Omar El-Gayar, dean of Graduate Studies and Research at Dakota State University, and Dr. Kathy Parkison, interim vice chancellor for Academic Affairs at Indiana University-Kokomo, comprised the checkup team.
Highlights of the review included:
- SIUE’s approach to the Quality Checkup through documentation and performance were acceptable and complied with the commission’s expectations.SIUE has made deliberate improvements in its processes. Specifically, SIUE has made significant contribution to the development and integration of its assessment processes. SIUE presented examples of processes that demonstrated the institution takes data collection and analysis seriously, and uses data to drive process improvements.
- SIUE has developed an integrated budget and strategic planning process that uses data to align actions throughout the institution.
- SIUE has moved towards integrating and aligning the services of units and entities in accordance to its newly developed strategic plan consistent with a culture of continuous quality improvement.
- SIUE provided evidence of its commitment to a data driven continuous quality improvement process. This is evidenced by the development and implementation of a new integrated planning process that includes the University Quality Council (UQC), the University Planning and Budget Committee (UPBC) and input from various stakeholder groups. Central to this process is landscape analysis, communication and alignment of initiatives, and regular reporting and feedback.