College of Southern Maryland
8730 Mitchell Rd
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910
The purpose of the Division Review is to consider the overall academic offerings of the Division, keeping in mind the overall goals and expected outcomes for students. Just like the reviews of specific programs, the Division Review should generate an important dialogue between and among faculty regarding the overall goals for its students, providing insight into the current state of the Division disciplines, employment opportunities, student success and other such critical issues. The Division Review is used locally for continuous improvement and student learning assessment, and may help form Strategic Plans for the Division.
Program Reviews are intended to improve the quality of the academic offerings, ensure the wise use of resources, and determine the programís effectiveness. The Program Review process advances opportunities for academic planning and budgeting. Program reviews also play a vital role in the Collegeís student learning assessment program. The Program Review schedule (based on reviews every five years) serves as the foundation for assessment initiatives through its identification of priorities for the coming cycle. Halfway through the cycle (i.e., at 2.5 years), an updated report is submitted that reflects the status of assessment activities. The College has opted for a 2.5 year reporting cycle, reflecting the belief of the faculty designing the program that 2.5 years provides an optimum period of time to design, implement, and evaluate assessments and then use the results for continuous improvement.
The review of existing academic programs shall include both self-study (internal review) and external review. As much as possible, the institution should link its reviews of existing academic programs to specialized accreditation processes and dates. An external review associated with reaffirmation of specialized accreditation or with initial accreditation may, if completed within one year of the review date, satisfy the external review requirement. When review of the academic program will not occur as part of the specialized accreditation process, each institution should develop its own process for garnering external reviews. The method for identifying and selecting specific individuals who will serve as external reviewers should be determined.
Note that while Divisions may be designated for review in a specific year, this does not indicate that EVERY program within that Division must be reviewed. Each year, Divisions and programs will be identified for review.