NORTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY. College: College of Business. Department: Inter-Departmental. Program: Master of Business Administration

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1 NORTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY College: College of Business Department: Inter-Departmental Program: Master of Business Administration CIP Code: Northern Illinois University s M.B.A. program follows the professional degree model that emphasizes practice, skills, and training. Distinct from most traditional master s programs that are departmentally-based, the NIU M.B.A. is a college-based, interdisciplinary program that incorporates all of the functional areas of business including accounting, finance, management, marketing, operations management, and management information systems. The courses that make up the M.B.A. are provided by the Departments of Accountancy, Finance, Management, Marketing, Operations Management and Information Systems. The M.B.A. is viewed as a terminal degree for business professionals. Common themes integrated throughout the program curriculum are a global perspective of business, leadership, ethics and social responsibility, and communications. The primary objective of NIU s Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program is to prepare place-bound students, who are working full-time and intend part-time study, for greater leadership opportunities within their organizations. Understanding limitations of resources available, the College of Business made a decision in 1994, to refine its market niche for the M.B.A. program to meet the needs of place-bound, off-campus students. Today there are three M.B.A formats available to candidates: the Evening M.B.A, the Executive M.B.A., and the Professional M.B.A. Each has the same curriculum but differs in admission entry, program delivery, and course scheduling. The Evening M.B.A. offers evening classes at two off-campus sites. Admission is available during the fall, spring and summer terms, and progress is self-paced with electives chosen by the students. Short-term study abroad electives are available to all evening students. By contrast, the Executive M.B.A and the Professional M.B.A are accelerated, lock-step formats. The twenty-one month Executive M.B.A. classes meet on Saturdays only at Naperville, with either a study abroad or independent study option between years one and two. Admission is during the fall term only and work experience is given greater weight as part of the admission decision process in the Executive M.BA. than in the Evening M.B.A. Similarly, the one-year Professional M.B.A. program classes meet on Monday and Thursday evenings with admission in the spring term only and all students are required to participate in a short-term study abroad program component. Due to the 1

2 cohort nature of the Executive M.B.A. and the Professional M.B.A., the same electives are taken by all class participants in each program. Design of the Program to Achieve the Objectives/Outcomes The conceptual design of the NIU M.B.A. program is similar to that of most other M.B.A. programs within the state of Illinois, as well as across the United States. The program is composed of two major phases. The Phase One foundation or deficiency courses are designed for the adult learner who is lacking an undergraduate background in business administration, allowing them to quickly obtain the needed theories, concepts, and skills prerequisite to successfully comprehend the Phase Two work. This design is especially appropriate when entering students have degrees in engineering, the liberal arts, or other areas outside business and economics and are lacking foundation courses in accounting, business law, economics, finance, information systems, management, marketing, operations, and statistics. Instead of forcing these students to return to a four-year undergraduate program the M.B.A. program accepts these students as graduate students and examines each student s transcript and work record to determine if the student needs from zero up to nine Phase One courses. A typical student with an undergraduate degree in business will be exempt from taking Phase One courses with successful completion of a corresponding undergraduate equivalent. All NIU M.B.A. students complete the academically challenging Phase Two curriculum, a common core of all AACSB-accredited M.B.A. programs that emphasizes a mix of theory and practice providing opportunity for students to demonstrate their mastery of business knowledge, to better understand complexities of the business organization, to facilitate applied learning, decision making and problem solving, to make use of information systems technology, and to develop an awareness of global and cultural diversity and ethical issues in decision making, with communication skills in listening, writing, and speaking integrated throughout the curriculum. This interdepartmental core (21 hours) includes ACCY 630, Managerial Accounting Concepts; FINA 607, Financial Analysis; MGMT 635, Organizational Behavior, MGMT 672; Strategic Management and Policy (capstone course); MKTG 654, Marketing Management; OMIS 627; Operations Analysis; and OMIS 640; Management of Information Systems Technology. In addition to the core courses, students take 9 additional semester hours (3 courses) of electives courses. Completion of the NIU M.B.A. degree requirements varies depending upon the delivery format, with each delivery format designed to meet the diverse needs of the working-professional: Students pursuing the Evening M.B.A. format are required to satisfy the Phase One foundation courses with completion of the graduate level course, successful completion of a corresponding undergraduate equivalent, or by exemption examination. To ensure students have the necessary business skill set for success in advanced courses, the foundation courses must be satisfied prior to enrollment in Phase Two course work. All Evening M.B.A. students must complete the Phase Two 21 semester hour core and 9 2

3 additional semester hours for elective course work. Students may use their electives to focus either in one area such as finance, international business (including short-term study abroad programs), marketing, management, or management information systems or broaden their degree taking electives across several areas. The program also allows for flexibility in that students, with prior approval, are permitted to use graduate study elective courses from outside the College of Business to satisfy degree requirements. The Executive M.B.A. format adheres to the same criteria as that in the Evening M.B.A. The distinction between the two formats is that the Executive M.B.A. is a cohort lockstep format that allows students the opportunity to accelerate through the program (all Phase One and Phase Two courses). Students are assigned to study groups that remain intact throughout the duration of the program. Students are required to meet in their groups outside of regularly scheduled classes throughout the program. This added dimension in the program allows students the opportunity to strengthen their networking and broaden their perspectives on business and problem solving, thus allowing students to learn from each other and share their diverse perspectives on various topics. All of this results in a challenging, stimulating learning experience that provides for maximum return on time and resources invested. The Professional M.B.A. is designed for individuals with an undergraduate degree in business (or those that have completed corresponding equivalents to Phase One courses) and is offered in the same cohort, lock-step and accelerated format as the Executive M.B.A. These students are assigned to a study group and required to meet outside of regularly scheduled classes. In addition to the course knowledge and skills that enhance the student s ability to develop leadership, decision making and problem solving skills, opportunity to network with business leaders and gain exposure to cutting-edge business issues are provided through the M.B.A. colloquium events. The M.B.A. Colloquium Lecture Series was designed to provide out-of-class learning experiences. Topical discussion includes: The Quality of Leadership, The State of Business Ethics, Leadership Development in a Changing and Complex Environment, The U. S. Auto Industry at a Crossroads. Guest speakers include business experts, community leaders, and faculty from NIU and other institutions. Focusing on skills needed for success in courses and real-time take-aways for the workplace, the M.B.A. program offers numerous professional development workshops for students. Scheduled throughout the academic year, these workshops have covered the following topics: Effective Written Business Communications, Effective Presentation Skills, Business Ethics, Team Building, Leadership Skills, and Reality IT: Spreadsheet Modeling. As part of the on-going AACSB re-accreditation review, the M.B.A. program conducted a thorough review of the program design and courses to assess whether or not the desired learning outcomes were being achieved. 3

4 1. PROGRAM LEARNING OUTCOMES The M.B.A. Faculty Team (the College of Business AACSB Faculty Team and the College of Business standing committees: Curriculum Committee and Faculty Senate) with assistance from the College of Business Executive Advisory Board M.B.A. committee, identified learning and strategic outcomes for program assessment. Each is associated with achieving goals outlined in the M.B.A. program mission. In support of the mission of the College of Business, the M.B.A. Program strives to provide graduate business education to meet the needs of adult learners in the northern Illinois. The Northern Illinois University M.B.A. Program is designed to serve businesses and other organizations by preparing student to be leaders. Graduating students are expected to possess specific skills and knowledge outcomes as related to the M.B.A. program s Learning Outcomes: 1. Our graduates will be able to integrate information across business disciplines. Graduates will demonstrate the ability to solve business problems and make feasible decisions recognizing the relationship of the various business functions including accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, operations and productions, information technology, and strategic planning. 2. Our graduates will be effective decision makers. Graduates will demonstrate the ability to analyze data using the appropriate qualitative and quantitative tools and apply business concepts such as managerial accounting, financial analysis, organizational behavior, marketing management, operation analysis, management of information technology, and strategic management. 3. Our graduates can identify and understand the importance of ethical decision making for the organization and society. Graduates will demonstrate the ability to recognize and evaluate the ethical and social impact of business decisions. 4. Our graduates will have an awareness of the global and cultural diversity issues that impact business decision making. Graduates will demonstrate the ability to understand the role of cultural diversity in making decisions in the continuously changing global business environment using analysis of the appropriate strategic framework. 5. Our graduates will have effective communication skills. Graduates will demonstrate the ability to integrate interpersonal skills with professional written and oral delivery and appropriate technology to communicate ideas effectively. 4

5 2. EXPLANATION OF METHODS The following chart lists the current and future methods to be used as well as a description of each method, a timeline for implementation, the person(s) responsible, and the program learning outcomes each method addresses. METHOD DESCRIPTION TIME LINE PERSON (S) RESPONSIBLE Capstone Course (MGMT 672) M.B.A. Alumni Survey Educational Benchmarking, Inc. (EBI) Student Satisfaction Survey MBA Graduating Student Survey: Student Demographic Survey: Part 2 M.B.A. Exit Survey: Part 3 MGMT 672, the capstone course includes strategic simulation and comprehensive course project demonstrating successful integration of the functional areas of business and analysis the firm in its environment. Written presentation of project results with oral defense of conclusions and recommendations. TARGET: 85% successfully complete the assignments related to fulfilling the learning outcomes. TARGET: 80% will respond correctly on each of the outcome-related problems included in strategy game competency exam. Survey alumni (3 years after graduation) regarding their experiences at NIU, and their perceptions of how well the program achieved its learning outcomes and prepared them for their careers, their own career advancement, and lifelong learning (continuing education) endeavors and future needs. TARGET: Average rating on each of the learning outcomes evaluated will be 3.0 or higher /5.0 scale. (3 = Good, 5 = Excellent) Evaluation of program satisfaction by external, independent agency, which benchmarks participating schools against Select 6, Public, and Private Schools nationally, will be conducted. Continuing participation in EBI s Student Satisfaction Survey is dependent upon EBI s assuring consistency across different schools regarding survey response environment. Benchmarking and trend analysis TARGET: Improve ranking to top 3 against peer schools for outcomes identified in the survey. Part 2: Demographic survey administered to candidates for graduation, used to determine level of advancement or career movement while in the M.B.A. Program. Part 3: Graduating students will assess how well the M.B.A. program has prepared them to work in teams, integrate the functional areas, process information for strategic, ethical decision-making, etc. TARGET: Average rating on each of the learning outcomes asses will be a 4.0/5.0 point scale. Students must take course within the last 9 hours of program. Implemented by M.B.A. Programs in April Participated in EBI Part-time MBA Benchmarking Study: 1996, 1997 and 2002, Implemented in 2001 and ongoing each term. Evaluation of student performance completed by MGMT 672 Faculty. Results shared with program directors. Directors of Evening M.B.A., Executive M.B.A., and Professional M.B.A. M.B.A. Faculty Team (standing committees) will evaluate results. EBI/EMBA Council Personnel prepare the survey analysis. Directors of Evening M.B.A., Executive M.B.A. and Professional M.B.A. M.B.A. Faculty Team (standing committee) will evaluate the results. Directors of Evening M.B.A., Executive M.B.A. and Professional M.B.A. M.B.A. Faculty Team (standing committee) evaluate the results. OUTCOME(S) ADDRESSED Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3, 4, and 5 Learning Outcomes: 2, 4, and 5 Learning Outcomes: 3,4 and 5 Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5 5

6 Capstone Course, MGMT 672: All M.B.A. students are required to take MGMT 672 Strategic Management and Policy within the last nine hours of the program. To complete the course successfully, students must demonstrate: 1) the ability to solve business problems and make feasible decisions recognizing the relationship of the various business functions including accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, operations and productions, information technology, and strategic planning; 2) the ability to analyze data using the appropriate qualitative and quantitative tools and apply business concepts; 3) the ability to recognize and evaluate the ethical and social impact of business decisions; 4) the ability to understand the role of cultural diversity in making decisions in the continuously changing global business environment using analysis of the appropriate strategic framework; and 5) the ability to integrate interpersonal skills with professional written and oral delivery and appropriate technology to communicate ideas effectively. Faculty teaching the course use cases analysis, a course project, and a Business Strategy Simulation Game to assess learning outcomes. TARGET: 85% successfully complete the assignments related to fulfilling the learning outcomes. Included with the Business Strategy Simulation Game is the Comp XM The Capstone Competency Exam. The questions posed in this exam measure the student s ability to analyze data using the appropriate qualitative and quantitative tools and apply business concepts as well as the ability to solve business problems and make feasible decisions recognizing the relationship of the various business functions including accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, operations and productions, information technology, and strategic planning. TARGET: 80% will successfully respond to outcome-related problems included in strategy game competency exam. M.B.A. Exit Survey: An M.B.A. Exit Survey is mailed to all graduates of the M.B.A. Program immediately following graduation. The satisfaction survey includes questions about the M.B.A. Program and alumni perceptions of the faculty effectiveness in teaching and opportunities to successfully demonstrate one s abilities with regard to the learning outcomes. Each outcome is rated on a 5 point scale with 5 equating to excellent evaluation. TARGET: Average rating on each of the learning outcomes evaluated will be 4.0 or higher. M.B.A. Alumni Survey: M.B.A. Alumni are surveyed again three years after graduation. This satisfaction survey asks alumni to evaluate the program based on the overall experience and preparation for career development. Alumni are asked to rate the program on how well it increased knowledge or skills in areas related to the learning outcomes such as analysis of data and problem solving, understand the relationship of business disciplines, inclusion of international perspective in courses, and communications skills. Responses are rated 1 through 5 with 3 = Good, 4 = Very Good and 5 = Excellent. TARGET: Average rating on each of the learning outcomes evaluated will be 3.0 = Good or higher /5.0 scale. 6

7 Educational Benchmarking, Inc. (EBI) Survey (activities over the last three years) Participation in the EBI Assessment provides learning outcomes analysis as well as overall program effectiveness benchmarking through self-assessment, comparative assessment (reference point which we measure our program effectiveness against comparative schools and all participating institutions) and continuous assessment (longitudinal trends for improvement measures). In 2007, 84 of 106 Evening MBA graduating students participated in the survey. TARGET: Improve our ranking against peer schools for outcomes identified in the survey. 3. EVIDENCE: AVAILABLE DATA Capstone Course, MGMT 672 (activities over the last three year and in Spring 2008). MGMT 672 is required of all M.B.A. students and generally taken as the last course or within the last 9 hours of the M.B.A. program. The course assignments include cases analysis, a course project, and the Business Strategy Simulation Game. Sections of this course are not always taught by the same faculty and with faculty given freedom to design their own course assignments, it has been slow to develop measures for the learning outcomes. Efforts are being made to include assignments that are linked to the five targeted learning outcomes. Formal measures will be designed so as to capture performance date related to each of the outcomes in addition to overall successful completion of assignments. The Business Strategy Game includes CompXM, a Capstone Competency Exam and although not administered by all faculty, it was first used in Spring 2008 for a section of MGMT 672. This exam includes problem-solving questions to determine student understanding of the interrelationship of business areas (accounting, finance, human resources and strategic management, marketing and production) and the impact on strategic business decision-making. On 15 of 35 questions, the median score of NIU M.B.A. students participating in the exam was lower than the target of 80%. (See Exhibit 1: CompXM Results). The low scores were indicated in all business disciplines. M.B.A. Exit Survey (activities over the last three years) In a survey of 2005 graduates, the average score of 4.0/5.0 scale was received when asked how would you assess you opportunity to increase your awareness of global business issues. This was a slight improvement from the 3.6/5.0 score from the 2004 survey results. However, in survey of 2006 and 2007 graduates, a score of 3.8/5.0 point scale was received. These score fall below the target score of 4.0 and are of concern. Although there are increased opportunities to participate in M.B.A. focused short-term study abroad programs or enroll in traditional face-to-face international business electives such as Global Marketing Strategy, International Management, International Organization Behavior, and International Finance, it is apparent that international or global business and cultural diversity discussion is lacking in the required core curriculum. 7

8 M.B.A. Alumni Survey (activities over the last 5 years) The 2007 survey of 2004 MBA graduates rated the overall M.B.A. experience at NIU as very good to excellent and the program in terms of the learning outcomes, as good to very good. The average rating exceeded the target rating of 3.0 (Good) in each of the learning outcome areas that were evaluated and the 2007 results showed improvement compared to the 2003 survey of 2000 graduates. Twenty-one of 125 responded to the 2007 Alumni survey Alumni Survey ( compared to 2004 survey) How well did the program increase you knowledge or skills in the following areas? 2004 % with very good to excellent 2007 % with very good to excellent Learning Outcome 2 Ability to analyze and interpret data % very good or excellent % good to excellent Learning Outcome 4 Understanding of international perspective % very good to excellent % good to excellent Learning Outcome 5 Communications effectively Oral Communications % very good to excellent % good to excellent Written Communications % very good to excellent % good to excellent 3.0 = Good, 4.0 = Very Good, 5.0 = Excellent These results show improvement and although the response rate is low (17%), the ratings below 4.0 indicate opportunity for increased emphasis on awareness of global and cultural diversity issues that impact business decision making and improving skills for effective communication. Educational Benchmarking, Inc. (EBI) Survey (activities over the last three years) The 2007 EBI Part-Time MBA Exit Assessment, was administered to graduating MBA students in AY 2007 (79% response rate) as well as 1996, 1997, and 2002 providing not only a review of our performance in comparison to other AACSB accredited institutions but on select areas of the survey, a longitudinal study. The assessment shows that 2007 graduating students have a very favorable perception about the MBA program s ability to enhance their critical thinking and problem solving skills. NIU ranked 1 in our Select 6 comparison group (University of Houston, University of Akron, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, George Mason University, Marquette University, and the University of Illinois at Chicago). Similarly, when asked about to what extent did the MBA program address business ethics and to what extent did the MBA program address social responsibility, the graduating student rankings were 5.59 and point scale), respectively. NIU ranked 1 in our Select 6 comparison group, 2 in the 8

9 Carnegie Class of 18 institutions. The area of concern made evident in the survey of 2007 was the ranking against our Select 6 group when considering global perspective included in our curriculum. Although we improved to an average 5.77 from a 4.48 rating by students in 2002, we rank 4 in the Select 6 group. See highlights in the following chart: Factor #14: Learning Outcome: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving NIU Mean Select 6 Carnegie Class (18 institutions) Question Mean* Range Rank Mean* Range Rank Overall 5.87 Na 5.65 ( ) ( ) 5 Q #56 Q #57 Q #58 To what extent did the MBA program enhance: Ability to think critically 5.98 NA 5.69 ( ) ( ) 5 To what extent did the MBA program enhance: Ability to define problems 5.95 NA 5.67 ( ) ( ) 4 To what extent did the MBA program enhance: Ability to solve problems 5.83 NA 5.58 ( ) ( ) 5 Factor #5: Curriculum: Addresses Ethics and Social Issues NIU Mean Select 6 Carnegie Class (18 institutions) Question Mean* Range Rank Mean* Range Rank Overall 5.40 NA 4.68 ( ) ( ) 2 Q #19 Q #20 Curriculum: Extent that: The curriculum addressed business ethics 5.59 NA 4.85 ( ) ( ) 2 Curriculum: Extent that: The curriculum addressed social responsibility 5.22 NA 4.50 ( ) ( ) 2 Factor #4: Curriculum Breadth NIU Mean Select 6 Carnegie Class (18 institutions) Question Mean* Range Rank Mean* Range Rank Overall ( ) ( ) 4 Q #43 Q #44 Q #45 Satisfaction with: MBA Curriculum instructors presenting a global perspective ( ) ( ) 8 Satisfaction with: Opportunities to pursue work-related projects in students' courses ( ) ( ) 5 Satisfaction with: Value derived from team experiences ( ) ( ) 1 4. USE OF RESULTS Results from the capstone course, the M.B.A. Exit Survey, the M.B.A. Alumni Survey, and the EBA Benchmarking project are shared with College of Business standing committees responsible for evaluating, recommending changes and improvements to the program including the College of Business Senate, Curriculum Committee, department curriculum committees, as well as the College of Business Board of Executive Advisors M.B.A. Committee. 9

10 Based on the evaluation of these assessments, the M.B.A. Program has undertaken several actions. Regardless of which instructors are teaching MGMT 672, there is evidence that in evaluating individual performance in the course that students successfully meet the minimum desired to achieve the learning outcomes. Based primarily on results of the alumni and EBI survey evaluations with the appropriate faculty committees, 100% of the MGMT 672 course sections taught in Fall 2009 include a global business assignment and efforts have been undertaken to ensure that all section offered in future semesters will include a similar assignment, thus ensuring that students are exposed to this learning outcome in M.B.A. coursework. Although the CompXM Business Strategy Game Competency Exam piloted in Spring 2008 identified areas of concern, the limited number of participants (one course section), may not accurately reflect the student population s performance when assessing problemsolving abilities with regard to understanding of the interrelationship of business areas (accounting, finance, human resources and strategic management, marketing and production) and the impact on strategic business decision-making. MGMT 672 faculty were surveyed and the overall consensus is to consider using the CompXM Competency Exam or a similar comprehensive assessment exam in the future for all sections of MGMT FURTHER INFORMATION NEEDED. GAPS IN CURRENT DATA Preparation for program review identified weaknesses in the assessment plan. The M.B.A. program would like to increase efforts to indentify the relationship between course objectives and M.B.A. learning outcomes and develop quantifiable measures to assess strengths and weaknesses in accomplishing specified targets. Capstone Course and other M.B.A. required courses: Because there are no departmental faculty in the Master of Business Administration, the M.B.A. program directors will increase coordination of efforts with M.B.A. faculty and the appropriate College of Business committees to achieve desired learning outcomes: integration across business disciplines, effective decision making, understanding ethical making, awareness of global and cultural diversity issues, and communication skills. The following table, prepared using results from a 2007 survey of M.B.A. faculty, is the basis for development of a comprehensive plan for measuring the five targeted learning outcomes. Although only the Capstone course, MGMT 672, is currently utilized to assess M.B.A. learning outcomes, the survey results show that all MBA required courses address at least one learning outcome. For example, in MGMT 635, awareness of ethical business decision-making is addressed in the student self-assessment assignment and also in a case study. 10

11 Learning Outcomes by MBA Courses ACCY 630 FINA 607 MGMT 635 MGMT672 OMIS 627 OMIS 640 Capstone Course Outcome #1 X X X X X Outcome #2 X X X X X X Outcome #3 X X X X X X Outcome #4 X X X X Outcome #5 X X Assignments and exercises related to all desired learning outcomes need to be identified or developed and normally implemented into the appropriate M.B.A. required courses. Comprehensive Exam One method of direct measure of success in achieving learning outcomes is the use of standardized tests. The CompXM Competency Exam, piloted in Spring 2008, is limited in the depth of assessment; however, the MBA Comprehensive Exam offered by Education Testing (ETS) is designed to assess mastery of concepts generally common to all M.B.A. programs and provides opportunity to include program-specific questions. The results include national comparative data for benchmarking against peer, competitive, and aspirant schools as well as learning outcomes evaluation. Further discussion with appropriate M.B.A. faculty committees is required prior to implementing a standardized test and recruiting a volunteer sample of the current M.B.A. student population to establish a base-line for future testing. Advisory Boards and Employer Feedback Surveys of employers in the past have difficult to administer, generated extremely low response rate, and in many cases, biased responses from student or alumni supervisors. Because this type of feedback is important for determining skills and knowledge required for our graduates, the M.B.A. program is currently and will continue to seek guidance of respected business leaders serving on the College of Business Board of Executive Advisors, in particular, those engaged as part of the M.B.A. Committee. This partnership provides an external perspective of M.B.A education in general and NIU s role in fulfilling the need for graduate business education. In Spring 2009, the Experiential Learning Center (ELC team), a diverse group of NIU students, worked specifically with a M.B.A. Committee of the Board of Executive Advisors dedicated to analyzing the MBA Program at Northern Illinois University. The team conducted research and analysis of the current MBA market in the Chicago area. The goals of this assignment were to better position Northern Illinois University MBA Program and better understand current AACSB-accredited schools positioning. 11

12 The research for the project followed a multi-step market research process. The Phase I objective was to perform secondary research. This was done by compiling a database of general information for schools providing an MBA in the Chicago area. The Phase II objective was exploratory research that included in-depth interviews with prospective and current MBA students at NIU and other Chicago area universities in order to learn more about the decision making process. Focus groups were held with current NIU MBA students attending classes at Hoffman Estates. During Phase III the team developed a survey and administered it online. Lastly, during Phase IV, the data was coded, analyzed, and interpreted. The focus of this project includes emphasis on AACSB accredited schools in the Chicago area and the team identified market trends such as enrollment size, cost, location, average student age, and work experience. The market analysis results were presented in May 2009 to faculty and the M.B.A. program directors. Recommendations were strategic as well as curricular related: Target a more diverse MBA population Improve reputation and brand image Offer program specializations Promote the individual benefits of NIU Continue AACSB promotion The M.B.A. Program is taking into consideration the strategic recommendations and intends to work with faculty reviewing curricular related suggestions for department specializations as well as a global emphasis. M.B.A. Exit and M.B.A. Alumni Survey: The M.B.A. program will continue to survey graduating students at the end of each semester and alumni annually. The department will also continue to annually provide the Office of Assessment Services with its supplemental department survey to be sent to all graduates to whom the Office of Assessment sends alumni surveys. Given the low response rates to recently administered paper versions of these surveys, we are working to find an appropriate electronic method of dispersing the survey, and collecting survey responses, and analyzing data. 6. TIME LINE The M.B.A. Program will follow the following timeline in the annual program assessment process. 12

13 MONTH /TERM September October November December January February ACTION Collect and analyze summer exit survey results Analyze results of EBI survey Meet with MBA faculty committees to evaluate survey results October 2009: meet with faculty to review course-related learning outcomes BOEA Meeting/Strategic Planning Council: MBA Committee meeting Revise the MBA Alumni Survey and MBA Exit Survey documents M.B.A. Exit Survey December graduates CompXM Exam ( or ETS MBA Exam) Collect and analyze fall exit survey results Meet with MBA faculty committees to evaluate survey results February 2010: meet with faculty to review course-related learning outcomes March April May June M.B.A. Alumni Survey (ie 2010 survey of all 2007 MBA graduates) BOEA: MBA Committee meeting M.B.A. Exit Survey May graduate EBI Benchmark Survey (AY: 2011) Collect and analyze spring exit survey and alumni survey results. July August M.B.A Exit Survey August graduates 13

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