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Pima County Community College District Standard Practice Guide

SPG Title: Institutional Effectiveness Program
SPG Number: SPG-1504/AA     
Effective Date: 6/1/94
Approval Date:  6/1/94           
Review Date(s):
Revision Date(s):           
Sponsoring Unit/Department: Chancellor / VC Educational Services
Regulation Title & No.: Institutional Effectiveness, RG-1504/A
Board Policy Title & No.: Institutional Effectiveness, BP-1504
Legal Reference:             
Cross Reference: 

The Institutional Effectiveness Program (IEP) is designed to be responsive to the third criterion for accreditation of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.  This criterion states that, after having defined and organized itself to accomplish its purpose, the institution-Pima Community College-must demonstrate that it is accomplishing its purpose.  This criterion is related to the general public demand for accountability from its educational institutions.

The IEP has evolved as a continuing process which will help the College and its accreditors determine whether the College is, in fact, accomplishing its purpose.

The Institutional Effectiveness Program at Pima Community College is intended to embody a living philosophy, and will continue to evolve over time.  Each of the evaluation processes described here will continue to be improved so that implementation is streamlined and efficiency is enhanced.

Institutional Effectiveness at Pima Community College is presently composed of assessment activities in five areas:

  • Mission evaluation
  • Program & service review
  • Board of Governors & employee evaluation
  • Student outcomes assessment
  • Planning & evaluation of planning

The central focus for the IEP is student outcomes assessment, in that it is deemed to be the key measure of the college's success.  Each of the processes interact one with another.  Responsibility for overall coordination of the IEP rests with the Office of the Vice Chancellor which will publish each fall semester an Annual Report on results and activities in institutional effectiveness for the preceding academic year.

Mission Evaluation

PCC reviews its mission and reports to the community annually.  It also conducts a comprehensive evaluation approximately once every five years with broad-based community involvement, so as to ensure that the mission continues to address the needs and expectations of its publics, and that the College is succeeding in fulfilling its mission.

Responsibility for the coordination of the mission evaluation processes rests with the Office of Research and Planning.

Program and Service Review

PCC conducts regular reviews of programs and services to promote the educational quality, vitality, and efficiency of the College.  These reviews-conducted for instructional programs, as well as in student development and instructional support services-measure the extent to which programs and services fulfill the College's mission.

There are two levels to program review for instructional programs.  Level I occurs annually in four major categories: students, faculty, curriculum, and financial/operational budget characteristics.  Level II is a comprehensive review combining both a quantitative and a qualitative evaluation, conducted every fifth year.

Responsibility for Program & Service Review is shared among Chancellor's Cabinet, the Office of Research & Planning, and the Office of the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs & Student Development.

Board & Employee Evaluation

PCC acknowledges that the lifeblood of any educational institution is its personnel, who alone can provide the services, conduct evaluation and planning, and carry out the improvements that define the character and determine the quality of the institution.  For these reasons the Board of Governors and employees-faculty, chancellor, administrators, and staff-undergo periodic evaluation and are supported and encouraged by the College to achieve their full potential.

Evaluation documents are available through the Office of Human Resources.

Student Outcomes Assessment

Student achievement is the real measure of a college's success.  To this end, Pima Community College has instituted new strategies to enhance existing assessment activities and has developed an action plan to produce and continuously improve a systematic, effective Student Outcomes Assessment Program.  Student outcomes information falls into four areas: classroom mini-grants (designed to promote classroom research and assessment by individual faculty members); general education course designation (which now requires identification of student outcomes and the means by which they will be measured); the DACUM process (a process for defining learning outcomes from occupational analysis); and institutional research (on the success of PCC students who transfer to four-year institutions; and with surveys of Pima County employers which assess training needs, employment needs, and opinions about PCC).

Responsibility for coordination of student outcomes assessment activities rests in the Office of the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Student Development.

Planning & Evaluation of Planning

Under the leadership of College administrators, planning is accomplished through a participatory process including students and employees from all classifications.  Formal planning emanates from the College mission, and the processes are decentralized, yet integrated, reflecting the campus-centered organizational structure.  Planning activities include annual updating of the College's strategic traveling directions, campus and College strategic plans, and five-year master plans.  The College's planning efforts are evaluated through one or more of the following methods: survey research; documentation of campus/support unit indicators of success; planning evaluation focus groups; and planning evaluation audits.

Responsibility for coordination of the overall College planning process rests with the Office of Research and Planning.

More specific descriptions of implementation practices for each of the Institutional Effectiveness Program components are embodied in a set of documents published by the Office of the Vice Chancellor, the "Institutional Effectiveness Series."  Copies of the documents have been distributed to various constituencies in the College, including all administrative offices.  Reference copies are available for consultation in each of the campus libraries.

Titles in the Institutional Effectiveness Series are as follows:

  1. Institutional Effectiveness Program (overview)
  2. Mission Statement Evaluation
  3. Program and Service Review
  4. Board and Employee Evaluation
  5. Student Outcomes Assessment Plan
  6. Planning Guidelines and Evaluation