Frequently Asked Questions

Department Planning FAQs

Q: My department is comprised of two or three distinct areas. May I submit a report for each?

A: Yes. It is important to identify the most meaningful units of analysis for this work, and in some cases that will involve separating a department into multiple groups related to disciplines or program focus (e.g. life sciences and physical sciences)

Q: What should I include in my progress report?

A: Summarize the discussion amongst your department faculty and staff about your progress toward strategic goals, institutional priorities as they relate to your work, and ideas for areas of focus in the coming year(s). Be sure to include program-specific measurable indicators and outcomes.

Q: Do I need to report on all of the data elements listed on the data elements worksheet?

A: No. The idea is for you to review all of the data elements and engage your faculty and staff in conversations about those that are most meaningful to you, your work, and program effectiveness.

Q: We maintain additional data elements for our department. May we report on these?

A: Yes, as long as the data is vetted by institutional research, the Budget Office or other appropriate sources.

Q: What do we do if we don’t understand the data in the data package and/or don’t have access to key data needed to evaluate our program?

A: Contact Planning and Institutional Effectiveness and/or Institutional Research for a consultation.

Q: What will our department planning report be used for?

A: The primary objective of the department planning process is for department managers, faculty, and staff to have a dialog about program data and performance, acknowledge and appreciate department gains, and to discuss goals for addressing gaps or opportunities. An important secondary objective is to create a structure for deans and directors to share performance data with their executive and to receive feedback on goals and resource planning.

Q: When will our program do program review?

A: Academic program review schedules are coordinated by the Academic Program Review Oversight Committee (APROC), Student Affairs and Finance & Administration are coordinated through their respective offices.

Q: Is unit planning officially gone?

A: Yes, the new planning paradigm of program review and annual department planning has replaced unit planning.