Integrated Planning & Institutional Effectiveness
What is Planning?
Planning in higher education is all about setting goals that are grounded in and support the college or university's unique mission. These goals vary in scope across the institution - some are university-wide, engaging all members of our community, while others focus on the unique needs of academic and administrative units, groups, and even individuals, guiding their work and aligning it with institutional goals. The University of Scranton embraces long-held Jesuit principles of collaborative engagement throughout this process - cura personalis, or individual attention and respect for the uniqueness of each member of the University community, and cura apostolica, the commitment to holistic care of our mission. The broadly representative University Planning Committee plays a central role in this process.
The plans that result from this engagement are only the beginning. At its best, planning is a continuous, collaborative and integrated cycle of assessment and action - helping multiple units across the organization to work together toward common aims, define priorities, and apply resources where they are needed. Implementation of plans is supported through various structures and processes, and guided by milestones to evaluate and reflect on progress, and make course adjustments based on what we learn and experience.
With our University-wide strategic plan as a guiding framework, the University's planning model more fully applies this principle, creating opportunities for all units (academic and administrative) to use assessments to shape their own goals in support of the strategic plan, and address their own evolving needs.
Planning: A conscious and continuous process by which an institution assesses its current state and the likely future condition of its environment, identifies possible future states for itself, and then develops organizational strategies, policies, and procedures for getting to one or more of them.
Strategic Planning: a conscious process of developing institutional goals, and articulating the means by which they will be (1) achieved and (2) assessed. The resulting strategic plan serves as roadmap, or framework, to guide decision making through a particular period of time.
Our Strategic Plan
Following the conclusion of the University of Scranton's 2015-2020 Strategic Plan - An Engaged, Integrated, Global Experience - members of the University community worked together to build a new plan for 2020 and beyond. Drawing from University-wide assessment, the plan outlines new institutional goals and objectives in five areas. The plan directly addresses opportunities for growth and improvement identified as part of our 2019 Middle States Self-Study, the recent Mission Priority Examen, and other assessments and analysis. The plan is operationalized through our integrated, tiered planning model. Learn more about the strategic plan by clicking the banner below.
What is Institutional Effectiveness?
Institutional effectiveness assessment (IE) is a comprehensive process that integrates planning, institutional and educational assessment, and other evaluative activities that support decision making, resource allocation, and improvement.
Three departments play a role in leading and supporting the institutional effectiveness cycle: the Office of Planning & Institutional Effectiveness, the Office of Institutional Reporting and Data Analytics, and the Office of Educational Assessment. These offices coordinate the wide variety of activities that occur within each step of the cycle: assisting units in identifying goals and outcomes; identifying appropriate measures of success and useful assessments; aligning unit-level and program assessment activities in institutional goals; supplying data and conducting surveys and studies; and providing support for interpreting and using findings to document success or identify opportunities for improvement.