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Goal 1: Strengthen the Academic Core

 

Initiative Task

Cross- Cutting Initiative 1.1

Strengthen the Liberal Arts component of an FIT education.  

1.1.1

Hold a College-wide academic retreat to incorporate ideas emerging from the Liberal Arts retreat (Spring ’06) and to reinforce the significance of the Liberal Arts at FIT.  

 

1.1.2

Convene College-wide conversations that:

  • Result in an action plan to ensure that students in every field of study achieve a breadth of learning;
  • Assess the appropriateness of including the SAT/ACT exams in the admissions process;
  • Result in a plan as to how to best meet the wellness needs of students (part of cross-cutting initiative 1.5).
 

New Task (Spring 2010) 1.1.3

A small group should convene and make a recommendation to Cabinet and the President regarding the use of SAT/ACT scores for admissions. They should address: 

  • How should we use the ACT/SAT scores? 
  • How do we assure that we use these scores consistently? 
  • How will we communicate the weight of SAT/ACT scores in the admissions process to students?

In addition, the group should address admissions standards: 

  • Have we clearly defined standards and if not, how should they be defined and communicated? Are academic standards (GPAs), standardized across departments within each school? 
  • What process must be put into place to ensure that standards are enforced – faculty, chairs and admissions staff should not be permitted to make admissions decisions and deviate from required standards? 
  • How much weight do portfolios have in the admissions process? 
  • Are students with higher SAT/ACT scores and “A” portfolios more successful? Data should be collected and analyzed. A matrix should be created. 
  • How will we enforce the use of e-portfolios?

It should be noted that the School of Art and Design has been working to ensure that the portfolio requirements are consistent across all delivery methods. Once the roll-out of e-portfolio for all AAS programs is complete in
Fall ’10, the Dean will begin to work with departments to fine-tune portfolio requirements for consistency and to reduce rigidity wherever possible.

 

1.1.4

1.1.4
Identify issues of pedagogy and faculty development that would strengthen the Liberal Arts core of an FIT education.

 

1.1.5

Develop a plan for a professionally directed video to communicate the importance of the Liberal Arts in an FIT education.

Cross-Cutting Initiative 1.2

Undertake a sustained effort to increase the size of the full-time faculty.  

1.2.1

Include the addition of full-time faculty lines as a priority in each year’s budget discussions.  

New Task (Fall 2009) – 1.2.2

Engage the faculty in a series of conversations regarding curricular and other needs of the student of the future. Conversations should result in:
• Development of core competencies for all faculty as well as more specific competencies for faculty in the individual schools and departments.
• Development of hiring criteria (e.g., technology skills) for adjuncts
• Heightened awareness of diversity and global issues among current full-time faculty

Conversations should continue for non-classroom faculty and other staff engaged in support services. 

 

1.2.2

Appoint and deploy visiting professors/researchers.

1.2.3

Seek funds for endowed chairs as part of the College’s fundraising efforts.  

 

Cross-Cutting Initiative 1.3

Enhance and strengthen the College’s international relationships.

1.3.1

Create and implement a plan that includes:

  • Criteria for international collaborations
  • An assessment of our current partnerships and collaborations based on the criteria developed;
  • Research of other international opportunities based on the criteria developed
  • Recommendations for the direction and scope of future international programs and goals and initiatives to support them.  
 

New Task (Fall 2008) 1.3.2

Create and advisory committee to conduct an on-going assessment of our international programs and further refine the International Programs Strategic Plan.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) 1.3.3

Conduct international student focus groups to better understand and address their needs.

Cross-Cutting Initiative 1.4

Establish standards of excellence for all students.

1.4.1

Review grade inflation, academic probation criteria and dismissal policies.  

 

New Task (Spring 2010) 1.4.1a

Implement an early warning system for students who do not appear to be succeeding.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) 1.4.1b

Change the current dismissal procedures. The transcript review committee should not be the body that reviews transcripts and makes decisions about who should be on probation or dismissed. Dismissal and probation decisions should be made based on standards with an appeal process for students who dispute the decision.

1.4.2

Re-examine and enforce the number of credits that a student is permitted to take as a non-degree student before declaring the intention to apply for degree status.  

Cross-Cutting Initiative 1.5

Through evaluation, assessment and revision of curriculum, offer a rich array of 2- and 4-year programs that provide graduates with skills that can lead to immediate employment and build foundations for long-term educational and professional growth

1.5.1

Facilitate coordinated planning and implementation of academic initiatives involving the three undergraduate schools including:

  • Reviewing 2-year, 4-year and seamless programs;
  • Redesigning where appropriate 2-year, 4-year and seamless programs;
  • Developing a plan that takes into account logistical and other consequences resulting from programmatic decisions;
  • Reviewing course loads by major;
  • Incorporating Liberal Arts or other electives into the curriculum;
  • Providing interdisciplinary partnerships through concentrations
  • Eliminating course duplication.

1.5.1 a

Develop a blended learning pilot program to be rolled out during the next 3 semesters. If successful, develop a plan for institutionalizing this method of course delivery. 

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1 b

Assess the policy of allowing FIT students to enter into an upper degree program with up to six (6) credits left to complete their associate degree.

This should include assessing:
• the impact of possibly requiring students to complete their associate degree before being permitted to enroll in an upper division program;
• Requirements to ensure that students can complete their degrees in two (2) years;
• the impact of allowing lower division students to take upper division courses;
• our current tuition policy of charging lower division students who are taking upper division courses, the lower rate (and vice versa); and
• Clarifying and articulating how many credits are required for an AAS.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1 c

Develop a comprehensive list of requirements for students to transfer from lower to upper division

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1d

Work with the departments to reduce the number of courses required in the major in order to offer more interdisciplinary courses.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1e

Cap and enforce the number of credits students are allowed to take each semester.

Phase 1 – immediately enforce the 21 ½ credit limit for Fall ’10 and Spring ’11 and consider a one (1) course limit for Summer ’10 and Winter ’11.
• Vice President/Academic Affairs will send communication advising faculty that this policy will be enforced
• Vice President/Enrollment Management and Student Success will develop a process for overrides
• Vice Presidents for Enrollment Management and Student Success and Information Technology will develop a process for a credit limit to be monitored by Banner in order to block students from registering.
• Vice Presidents for Enrollment Management and Student Success and Information Technology will assess system security to determine who has Banner override capabilities.

Phase 2 - Review the 21 ½ credit limit policy to determine if the credit limit needs to be changed to 18.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1f

Change “Summer, Summerim, and Winterim” to “Summer Session 1, Summer Session 2 and Winter respectively. Begin to change all publications and send a communication to the college community letting them know that we are making the change.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1g

Assess the feasibility of using on-line student evaluations.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1h

Assess the feasibility of instituting an honor code (How do we enforce a policy on “cheating”?).

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1i

Develop a metric to assess if offering developmental courses on-line is the appropriate method of delivery and if so, increase the number of developmental courses offered on-line.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1j

Assess the application process to determine if the application for entering lower division students who plan to move to upper division should be seamless and if so, what is the impact?

(This task is also linked to strategic recruitment)

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1k

Assess program enrollments and strategically decide which programs we may want to recruit additional cohorts, which programs we may want to reduce cohorts, and which programs we may want to consider eliminating.

(This task is also linked to strategic recruitment)

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.5.1l

Explore the creation of an interdisciplinary (special topic course that could be housed in the Office of Academic Affairs. A different topic could be taught each semester. Also consider engaging the School Deans teaching these courses.

1.5.2 – Art and Design

Develop school-wide standards and criteria for admission to all school programs.

1.5.3 – Art and Design

Identify and address the needs of returning and transfer students.  

1.5.4 – Art and Design

Host a curriculum workshop for all Art and Design department chairs and department curriculum chairs.  

1.5.5 – Art and Design

Create the potential for team-teaching in studio courses to better integrate hand and technical skills in hybrid classrooms. 

 

New Initiative (Spring 2010) Cross Cutting - 1.6

Begin discussions to redefine the curriculum in such a way to provide more interdisciplinary opportunities among schools.

 

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.1

Conduct focus groups of students, alums and industry leaders to determine curricular needs.

   

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.2
Begin discussions with department chairs about adding an additional free elective in each major.

Note: The Acting Dean for the Jay and Patty Baker School of Business and Technology had preliminary discussions with the Chairs in Spring ’10. Discussions should continue in the Fall.

   

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.3
Begin discussions with department chairs about developing introductory courses for all majors.

   

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.4
Assess programs in the undergraduate schools to identify where there may be growth if an evening/weekend degree was created.

   

New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.5
Identify the most popular courses that historically fill with day students and consider an evening section restricted to day students. This will allow continuing education students to enroll in classes originally scheduled for them.

   

Art and Design - New Task (Spring 2010) - 1.6.6

Eliminate the individual concentrations in the sixth and seventh semesters in Fashion Design.

 

New Initiative (Spring 2010) Cross Cutting - 1.7

Infuse sustainability into the curriculum

 

New Task (Spring 2010 – 1.7.1
Create a committee to examine the curricula and identify those disciplines where sustainability can be integrated into existing courses (or create new courses).

 

New Initiative (Spring 2010) Cross Cutting - 1.8

Infuse diversity into the curriculum

 

New Task (Spring 2010 – 1.7.1

Create a committee to examine how best to infuse diversity and cultural differences throughout the curriculum. Also, consider establishing a course that incorporates a dialogue about diversity as part of the gen ed requirement.

Art and Design Initiative 1. 1

Introduce faculty lines with less traditional format of employment.

1.1.1

Develop a proposal for the adjustment of teaching loads to allow for participation in design workshops and research. 

Liberal Arts Initiative 1.1

Assist FIT students to acquire the range and depth of liberal arts knowledge expected of them at graduation which they will need in order to grow in their careers and in life.

1.1.1

Hold a retreat for the School of Liberal Arts to develop a strategy for making Liberal Arts an integral part of the FIT education.

1.1.2

Develop concentrations that will offer Art and Design and Business and Technology students an interrelated group of Liberal Arts courses, making Liberal Arts a more coherent and meaningful part of their FIT education.  

1.1.3

Pilot a volunteer mentoring program which pairs students taking concentrations with Liberal Arts faculty.  

1.1.4

Identify curricula strengths and weaknesses across the School of Liberal Arts and develop a framework for faculty to revise and develop new courses, particularly to support concentrations.

1.1.5

Consider how to support interdisciplinary team-taught courses within and across the schools in order to increase student engagement.  

1.1.6

Revise the school mission statement.  

1.1.7

Strengthen the connections of Liberal Arts courses to students’ majors. 

Liberal Arts Initiative 1.2

Help students achieve the fundamental skills at FIT that they will need in order to succeed in their chosen careers.

1.2.1

Define and articulate expectations for:

  • Math skills in the 2- and 4-year programs;
  • Writing skills in the 2- and 4-year programs;
  • Presentation and communication skills.  

1.2.2

Establish criteria to evaluate students' demonstrated achievement in math and written communication at the end of developmental courses before advancing into credit-bearing required courses.

1.2.3

Enforce placement testing in English, arithmetic and algebra.  

1.2.4

Develop sample placement tests; encourage students to visit the Liberal Arts website to take sample placement tests prior to actual testing.  

1.2.5

Increase support for academic skills:

  • Expand tutoring in the Academic Skills Center;
  • Create a visible and fully-staffed Writing Center. 

1.2.6

Discuss (and add as appropriate) additional levels of developmental courses in English and math to help students master the skills they need for success in more advanced courses.

Liberal Arts Initiative 1.3

Successfully incorporate new faculty into the FIT community.

1.3.1

Establish a school-wide peer mentoring program for new full-time and part-time Liberal Arts faculty. 

School of Graduate Studies 1.1

Foster school growth.

1.1.1

Create new programs that address the evolving needs of graduate education for the industries FIT serves.  

1.1.2

Develop interdisciplinary collaborations with other FIT programs, including Executive Studies and undergraduate disciplines through the presentation of projects, papers, etc. Note: This is linked to the creative hub.  

1.1.3

Develop an international component that may be incorporated within the various graduate departments such as summer abroad studies and overseas seminars. 

School of Graduate Studies Initiative 1.2

Clarify and strengthen the school’s identity as a research and teaching facility.

1.2.1

Develop a mission statement that articulates the school’s goal to become a research and teaching facility.  

1.2.2

Attract and recruit faculty with key specialized interests and advanced degrees who can conduct and supervise research projects in addition to their teaching responsibilities.

1.2.3

Hire a coordinator to facilitate Creative Hub-related academic and public activities, seminars, symposia, lectures and other events.

1.2.4

Generate grant and business support for research activities. 

Continuing and Professional Studies Initiative 1.3

Develop and expand non-credit, credit, degree, certificate and training programs to extend educational opportunity to underserved populations, working professionals and adults, and corporate audiences.

1.3.1

Establish a new Center for Contract Training programs focusing on Innovation Management. This includes continuous improvement, leadership and other corporate education programs contracted off-site at companies. Programs will be developed synergistically between the School of Continuing and Professional Studies and other academic departments at the College. 

1.3.2

Expand Saturday Live program to Sunday and extend Pre-College summer semester.  

1.3.3

Gather thoughts and input from various internal FIT departments as a basis for developing expanded new market-worthy School of Continuing and Professional Studies programs.

1.3.4

Seek and identify increasingly external community and corporate partners for educational programs and articulations. 

 

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