University Of North Dakota SBHE Policy & 404.1

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1 University Of North Dakota SBHE Policy & In accordance with SBHE Policy 403.1, Program Approval; and 404.1, Distance Learning Credit activities, UND seeks on-going approval for on-campus and distance/online delivery of the: Master of Science, Doctor of Education and Doctor of Philosophy degree programs in Higher Education Need for Program: This proposal brings to North Dakota the first degree program with a major specifically in Higher Education. A graduate program in Higher Education offers several key benefits to prospective students and the University of North Dakota s College of Education and Human Development. First, it fulfills a regional and national labor demand, which is expected to grow in the future. Specifically, it meets the expectations of employers who seek individuals with expertise in the knowledge, skills, and abilities pertaining to the higher education enterprise. Second, it aligns with the academic offerings of nationally recognized programs and the general direction of the field of study. Third, it provides more efficient means and richer educational opportunities for the students and faculty involved in the newly proposed major because it builds on existing offerings from the College of Education and Human Development, and it combines those offerings into one major. Program Objectives: The academic mission is to prepare and support students, through a community of diverse learners, in their development as scholar-practitioners who seek positions in postsecondary educational organizations or governmental agencies. Accordingly, the proposed graduate studies in Higher Education will enable students to engage actively in the critical reflection and ethical decision-making of current issues and problems in higher education. To achieve those learning experiences, the faculty have identified three learning goals and several corresponding learning objectives for students of this major: Learning Goal 1: Students will display intellectual and professional curiosity in pursuit of knowledge and learning. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. articulate a general understanding of higher education as a field of study B. develop, deliver, and assess courses and educational programs that are grounded in current research and best practice on learning, course and program design, and assessment C. design and/or modify academic and co-curricular programs and policies to respond to the differences in student characteristics and developmental needs D. demonstrate the basic leadership skills of developing a vision, engaging others in the vision, and executing a plan to achieve the vision Learning Goal 2: Students will communicate in both written and oral presentation form with a scholar-practitioner frame. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. demonstrate sound research design and familiarity with quantitative and qualitative methodologies B. integrate information, theory and research with the student s own perspective and voice

2 C. apply theory to practice in order to demonstrate how organizations, culture and environment influence and shape student behavior D. analyze a situation, identify the key players and decision-makers, develop networks of support, and prepare compelling and convincing arguments Learning Goal 3: Students will demonstrate capacity to express multiple perspectives and values among multiple constituents, so they may maneuver throughout the enterprise, profession, and individual pursuits. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. define the philosophical and historical context of current issues and problems in higher education B. identify and understand cultural elements and artifacts for students, faculty, administrators, and policy-makers and how they impact the higher education experience C. demonstrate a commitment to diversity and social justice by understanding the backgrounds and histories of individuals D. promote multicultural competence in students, faculty, staff, administrators, and policy-makers Cost and Funding Resources: No additional resources are needed to operate the proposed graduate programs in Higher Education. The courses for the proposed graduate programs (M.S., Ed.D., and Ph.D.) in Higher Education are currently offered under the Educational Leadership [EDL] prefix. [It is important to note that Educational Leadership will continue to offer the M.Ed., Ed.D. and Ph.D. for PK-12 school leaders.] Accreditation Information: There is no accreditation agency that specifically reviews academic programs in the study of Higher Education; however, to maintain a high quality program, the faculty of this major will continue to adhere to standards established by two professional organizations that are affiliated with the study of Higher Education. Relationship of the Program Internally and Externally to the Campus: The proposed programs in Higher Education will work closely with several offices at the University of North Dakota to ensure proper planning and resource sharing, and to draw on support mechanisms already in place. The program does not duplicate academic offerings at UND or at any institution within the North Dakota University System. It does, however, augment existing programs and has potential to draw in new revenue to the University and the State. Articulation Opportunities: Because there are no other institutions within the North Dakota University System currently offering a program in Higher Education, no articulation opportunities will be available. Program Viability: Based on U.S. Department of Labor data, current program inquiries, and a consultant s review, this program demonstrates a strong, viable set of academic offerings for the M.S., Ed.D., and Ph.D. degrees. The enrollment projections indicate an expected steady increase, and we anticipate a completion rate of approximately 80%, which is consistent with past performance within the college of Education and Human Development and far exceeds the national norm of approximately 55%.

3 Plans for Assessment: The program assessment and evaluation approaches will take place in several ways. For the master s program, the faculty will assess and evaluate the student learning and fulfillment of the learning goals and objectives through three sources: 1) students will submit a portfolio of sample works from various classes which will link to the learning goals and objectives; 2) students will complete an Independent Study as a culminating experience to demonstrate their syntheses of information and capacity to express themselves as a scholar-practitioner in the field; and 3) students will participate in an oral comprehensive exam in which they will explain their written works and engage in a dialogue with faculty who may inquire further about specific documents to test the depth of the students knowledge, skills, and abilities of the field. The doctoral program in Higher Education will be assessed in four stages: The first assessment point of students will be at application for admission. Students potential to be a successful doctoral student in the program will be assessed in line with the program s overall goals and objectives. Second, students will participate in a two-part annual review. Advisors will meet annually with advisees to discuss curricular and program progress. In addition, the faculty will review student progress and potential concerns on an annual basis. Third, as students approach the completion of their emphasis area and scholarly tools course work, they will take their comprehensive exams. One exam will be administered by Higher Education to evaluate the students mastery of the higher education literature and research; the second examination will be administered by Education Foundations and Research to evaluate students research and methods competence. The final assessment point will be the students progression through and completion of a dissertation. Each of these assessment stages will be used to assess students learning and progression through the Higher Education doctoral program in relationship to the learning goals and objectives. I. REQUEST DETAIL 1. Program Objectives Overview of the Graduate Major in Higher Education The College of Education and Human Development (EHD) at the University of North Dakota proposes a graduate major in the study of Higher Education with three degree options Master of Science (M.S.), Doctor of Education (Ed.D.), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). This major incorporates the examination of the governance, organization, and administration of colleges and universities; internal and external factors leading to student access, development, and success; evaluation and assessment of students, programs, institutions, and systems; and ethical and historical implications of the higher education enterprise. The academic mission is to prepare and support students, through a community of diverse learners, in their development as scholar-practitioners who seek positions in postsecondary educational organizations or governmental agencies. Accordingly, the proposed graduate studies in Higher Education will enable students to engage actively in the critical reflection and ethical decisionmaking of current issues and problems in higher education. To achieve those learning experiences, the faculty have identified three learning goals and several corresponding learning objectives for students of this major: Learning Goal 1: Students will display intellectual and professional curiosity in pursuit of knowledge and learning. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. articulate a general understanding of higher education as a field of study

4 B. develop, deliver, and assess courses and educational programs that are grounded in current research and best practice on learning, course and program design, and assessment C. design and/or modify academic and co-curricular programs and policies to respond to the differences in student characteristics and developmental needs AAC: 2/13 D. demonstrate the basic leadership skills of developing a vision, engaging others in the vision, and executing a plan to achieve the vision Learning Goal 2: Students will communicate in both written and oral presentation form with a scholar-practitioner frame. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. demonstrate sound research design and familiarity with quantitative and qualitative methodologies B. integrate information, theory and research with the student s own perspective and voice C. apply theory to practice in order to demonstrate how organizations, culture and environment influence and shape student behavior D. analyze a situation, identify the key players and decision-makers, develop networks of support, and prepare compelling and convincing arguments Learning Goal 3: Students will demonstrate capacity to express multiple perspectives and values among multiple constituents, so they may maneuver throughout the enterprise, profession, and individual pursuits. Accordingly, students will be able to: A. define the philosophical and historical context of current issues and problems in higher education B. identify and understand cultural elements and artifacts for students, faculty, administrators, and policy-makers and how they impact the higher education experience C. demonstrate a commitment to diversity and social justice by understanding the backgrounds and histories of individuals D. promote multicultural competence in students, faculty, staff, administrators, and policy-makers Benefits to Offering the Graduate Major in Higher Education This proposed major in Higher Education offers significant benefit to prospective students and the University of North Dakota s College of Education and Human Development. First, a graduate major in Higher Education reflects the national trend in terms of academic offerings of recognized education programs. Historically, colleges of education across the nation have placed courses and emphasis areas in the study of higher education as a subset to current offerings on educational topics. These courses and program offerings typically relied heavily on the Pre- Kindergarten through 12th grade (PK12) literature, practices, and policies to construct learning experiences. That is, educational practices, theories, and concepts applied to all levels of education PK12 through Higher Education. However, around the mid-1900s and perhaps more significantly after the 1970s, Higher Education as a field of study became a much more defined and independent field of study from the PK12 education programs. Higher Education reflects a body of knowledge,

5 literature, and practices substantially different and independent of the lessons from the PK12 sector (Kezar, 2000; Ross, 1992; Volkwein, Carbone, & Volkwein, 1988). Thus, while the study of higher education contains foundational knowledge that may have derived from the PK12 sector, it has developed into a specialized area of study with unique characteristics and problems to investigate. Further, a graduate program in Higher Education meets the expectations of employers who seek individuals with expertise in the knowledge, skills, and abilities pertaining to the higher education enterprise. As employers, colleges and universities often search for candidates who have a foundational grounding on the whole higher education enterprise. While we currently offer a set of courses with a Higher Education emphasis and content, the degree names and offerings are perceived by outsiders as maintaining a PK12 focus. At times, the current degree names draw confusion to applicants, students, and our students prospective employers. Today, many academic programs designate Higher Education within the degree name to reflect the academic learning and experiences, rather than using names such as Educational Leadership or Educational Administration, which - at the national level - are typically associated with a PK12 focus. The presumption in the practice and academic fields is that an Educational Leadership degree is an education program about the PK12 environment, whereas a Higher Education degree responds to learning about the college and university environment. For example, today, job postings for student affairs positions within higher education frequently specify a degree in Higher Education as an employment prerequisite or preferred educational background. Put simply, a program in Higher Education meets employers interests, and the degree name as Higher Education conforms to the academic and professional nomenclature at the national level. In sum, the proposed Higher Education major aligns with the academic offerings of nationally recognized programs and the general direction of the field of study; meets the expectations of employers who seek individuals with expertise in the knowledge, skills, and abilities pertaining to the higher education enterprise; and provides a more efficient means and richer educational opportunities for the students and faculty involved. 2. Cost and Resources As noted earlier, no additional resources are needed to operate the proposed graduate programs in Higher Education. The College of Education and Human Development currently offers courses in Higher Education within the Department of Educational Leadership, but the area of study is not identified as a Higher Education major. This proposal establishes a graduate major that draws on the current courses within the Department of Educational Leadership as well as other relevant, supporting courses (offered particularly within the Departments of Educational Foundations and Research and Teaching and Learning). In other words, the courses identified for this new major currently exist within the Departments of Educational Leadership, Education Foundations and Research, or Teaching and Learning. For instance, an existing course at the master s level is Introduction to Higher Education. Under this proposal, that class would be moved into the new proposed prefix HE. This change should not impact any students; the change only represents an administrative coding change which accurately reflects a student s learning in the field of Higher Education. Similarly, many of the classes that we are proposing already exist in some capacity. For example, this proposal recommends the establishment of a new course, Higher Education and Public Policy. This course is currently offered in two sections one for the PK12 emphasis students and one of the Higher Education emphasis students. This proposal establishes the creation of a course that specifically identifies Higher Education as the course emphasis rather using a generic name (i.e., Education and Public Policy). Thus, a new prefix and course name designation more accurately reflects a student s learning. Equally important, only two actual new courses are required to offer

6 these new degree programs in Higher Education. Put simply, based on the current course offerings and infrastructure, the new major will require no new resources. The faculty and staff already teach these courses, no additional space is needed, and no additional fiscal resources are required. It is important to note that the Educational Leadership program will continue to prepare leaders and administrators for PK12 education in North Dakota and beyond. Thus, the Educational Leadership program will continue to offer the M.Ed., Ed.D. and Ph.D. for PK-12 school leaders. 3. Accreditation Information There is no accreditation agency that specifically reviews academic programs in the study of Higher Education. As an institution within the North Central region, these proposed degree programs (M.S., Ed.D., and Ph.D.) in Higher Education will adhere to the general standards under the Higher Learning Commission. In addition, the faculty of this program will continue to adhere to the standards that professional organizations establish. For example, the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education recommends professional standards for master s level courses addressing college student personnel administration. 4. Relationships of the Program Internally and Externally to the Campus To the institution: This proposal fits well with the University s strategic priorities particularly in its capacity to enrich the student experience and facilitate collaboration among existing programs. In furtherance of the University s strategic priorities, this proposed major in Higher Education, which will be housed within the Department of Educational Leadership, will work closely with several offices at UND particularly the Departments of Education Foundations and Research, Teaching and Learning, and the PK-12 program within the Department of Educational Leadership; the Graduate School; the Office of Continuing Education; and the Division of Student Affairs. Programs within the Departments of Education Foundations and Research, Teaching and Learning, and the PK12 program within the Department of Educational Leadership: The required courses for this new major are available in the Departments of Educational Leadership, Education Foundations and Research, and Teaching and Learning. Thus, the faculty of this new major will work with those departments on matters such as class scheduling to assist with space allocation and distance education offerings at the same location for economies of scale (e.g., to share courses, which may present greater efficiency). Graduate School: The faculty of this new major will maintain continuous interaction and participation with the Graduate School particularly in terms of maintaining academic standards, recruitment, and other enrollment matters. Office of Continuing Education: The faculty of this proposed major will work closely with the Office of Continuing Education (OCE) to facilitate the promotion, enrollment, and continued satisfaction of prospective and current students who do not take courses at the Grand Forks campus. Division of Student Affairs: Pursuant to professional norms and standards outlined in the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education guidelines, students seeking a master s degree in Higher Education, who have limited full-time work experience, will be strongly encouraged to engage in practicum experiences. In most cases, the Division of Student Affairs offers the ideal laboratory of learning for these students. Indeed, this practice is the model at more than 150 Higher Education (or equivalent) programs. To the system: UND s proposed major in Higher Education will also be offered as a service to other institutions within North Dakota University System. Faculty, staff, and graduate students at other NDUS campuses may enroll in one of the degree options of the proposed Higher Education major to gain more insights into the principles and practices of working in

7 colleges and universities. Currently, no other institution within the North Dakota University System offers a graduate major in Higher Education. To the region: The proposed Higher Education major will address the specific needs of this region by offering three degree options (M.S., Ed.D., and Ph.D.) specifically in the area of Higher Education. At present, only six schools in the region explicitly offer a formal major in Higher Education (i.e., Argosy University, Capella University, Dakota Wesleyan University, St. Cloud State University, University of Minnesota, and University of St. Thomas). UND s proposed program in Higher Education would likely attract students from around the world with the most significant representation from this region, specifically, North Dakota, Minnesota, South Dakota, Montana, and Canada. While other programs in the region offer a Higher Education major or some limited array of courses in the field, UND s academic excellence in terms of faculty, course offerings, and flexible course delivery will likely support the needs of Higher Education learners who live in our region of the country. 5. Relationship to the Roundtable Recommendations A. Economic Development Connections The proposed major in Higher Education will continue to contribute to the regional economic development connections in two prominent ways. First, the proposed Higher Education major will offer educational opportunities needed to fill the future labor market gap in the nation. Alumni surveys have indicated that graduates with a Higher Education degree successfully obtained positions within colleges and universities as faculty members, resident directors, academic advisors, directors of student activities, deans of students, professors, provosts, chief student affairs officers, and presidents. This major will continue to serve the labor force in the same manner as in the past. This point is critical given the increasing labor demand. This proposed major will also prepare individuals to enter professional and managerial roles within higher education. Like projections for college faculty, these positions are expected to grow quite significantly over the next two decades. According to the U.S. Department of Education (2011), between 1989 and 2009, the non-faculty professional positions grew more than 40% (i.e., from approximately 540,000 to over a million staff positions). Various reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR), and the Chronicle of Higher Education suggest that the levels are expected to keep pace with the increasing demand for higher education. Research and policy centers such as the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce and the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education have suggested unprecedented levels of people seeking higher education, especially as employers demand it to remain globally competitive. The proposed major in Higher Education will provide the additional higher education staff, with the requisite educational background, needed to satisfy the projected surge in college enrollments due to the market demand for a college degree. (N.B.: As established earlier in this proposal, colleges and universities as employers specifically state a graduate degree in Higher Education or its equivalent for many non-faculty professional positions. Thus, this proposed program will continue to serve as that education preparation for individuals who seek these professional positions within higher education.) Second, as stated earlier, it is anticipated that students from around the world will come to participate in these programs. The students participation will stimulate the local economy from their travel/relocation to the program site(s), engagement in the community, and tuition dollars generated. B. Education Excellence

8 To create a high quality program, the College of Education and Human Development hired a curriculum consultant, Dr. Kelly Ward of Washington State University. Dr. Ward is a nationally recognized professor of Higher Education. After working with Dr. Ward, the faculty constructed a more inclusive, comprehensive approach to examine the field of Higher Education. Students of this proposed program will be exposed to tested successful practices from multiple perspectives of the higher education enterprise. With this vantage point, students will have a greater appreciation of the various roles and responsibilities of key groups in the whole enterprise. Further, the program will promote a more collaborative approach to educating students in higher education with the intent of breaking down the silo structures that often plague colleges and universities today. The proposed major in Higher Education will also seek connections with professional practice and the advisory professional standards. The faculty will continuously work with practitioners in the field and adhere to guidelines from organizations such as the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education. C. Flexible and Responsive System The proposed Higher Education major fully considers and adapts to the ever changing environment of higher education. To begin, the proposed major in Higher Education builds off a curricular framework which examines the social, cultural, political, economic, historical, philosophical, and technological forces influencing and driving the field. This framework maintains a forward-looking and responsive educational outlook. Accordingly, topics covered in the proposed courses address the evolving special contexts and emerging concerns for higher education such as accountability, online education, and educating in a global and multicultural society. As society changes, these courses will require realignment. Further, the dedicated faculty for Higher Education currently research and participate in professional development addressing areas of new and emerging trends. Thus, they will be exposed to, participate in, and create the latest higher education principles and approaches for students and practitioners of the field. In addition, the proposed Higher Education major intends to work closely with various offices at UND such as the Graduate School, the Office of Continuing Education, and the Division of Student Affairs to support the faculty s efforts and the students learning of the latest principles and approaches for educators within higher education. D. Accessible System The proposed Higher Education major intends to establish an accessible system for students around the region and world. The accessibility occurs in multiple forms. First, this major will be accessible in terms of location. The proposed program offerings will be available on the Grand Forks campus as well as other sites around North Dakota (e.g., Bismarck and Fargo) as approved. Second, the degree programs in Higher Education will offer classes that meet weekly as well as courses that meet on weekends. Thus, a student who is working full-time and lives a considerable distance from the educational site can complete courses during the weekends without substantially disrupting their work environment. Third, the long-range plan includes efforts to place courses and whole degree programs online. E. Funding and Rewards This proposed major in Higher Education will operate using existing resources. As stated earlier, the program consists of resources from the Departments of Educational Leadership. Further, the courses will likely attract enrollment from graduate students in other programs around the University and elsewhere; these enrollments will provide additional revenue streams for the new program. F. Sustaining the Vision The faculty and staff for the proposed Higher Education major will incorporate five structural and process oriented mechanisms to sustain the State s vision of the University and this proposed

9 program in Higher Education. First, the faculty will construct a strategic plan to provide a blueprint of its goals. Second, via the Graduate School, the Higher Education program will participate in periodic program reviews to evaluate its status, strengths, and weaknesses. The reviews will also serve as a means of seeking constructive recommendations to enhance its offerings. Third, the faculty of this new program will participate in continuous communication and coordination efforts with the Graduate School to help gauge the program s performance particularly in terms of admissions and enrollment. Besides program reviews, the faculty will engage in several assessment and evaluation activities (as outlined below in the program assessment and evaluation discussion) to ensure focus and relevancy. Fourth, the faculty will implement periodic data collection events from a sample of current students and alumni as a way to seek feedback. Fifth, the faculty will engage in discussions and consult with the academic and practice professional organizations (e.g., Association for the Study of Higher Education, National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, and Council for the Advancement of Higher Education Programs) and practitioners within the Division of Student Affairs to gain insights about how the program can continue, adopt, or modify process improvement efforts. In short, the faculty of the proposed Higher Education program plan to incorporate at least five structural and process oriented mechanisms so it remains more connected, understood, relevant, and accountable to the present and future research. Recommendation: Approve UND request to offer Higher Education (M.S., Ed.D, PhD.)

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