Graduate Studies Governance

Action Project Worksheet

Describe one proposed or possible “vital few” Action Project

Institution: Augsburg College

A. Give a short identifying title (under 10 words) to this Action Project.

Graduate Studies Division Governance and Oversight

B.       Describe the goal(s) of this Action Project (in 100 words or fewer).

To articulate processes and structures central to the oversight of graduate programs at Augsburg College.   Specific goals include:

Establishment of a Graduate Council responsible for strategic planning, review of enrollment targets and program capacities, alignment of program goals with the College’s mission and vision, recommendations for new graduate programs, review of essential student services, and assessment of academic resources

Establishment of a Graduate Academic Affairs Committee for oversight of curriculum and academic policies, including admissions standards, grading standards, and graduation standards for graduate programs

Development of a distinctive reputation for graduate programs at Augsburg College

C.       Please identify the single AQIP Criterion which this Action Project will primarily affect (check one box in the Primary column), and no more than four other Criteria to which it is strongly related (check boxes in the Related column):

AQIP Quality Criteria



1 – Helping Students Learn


2 – Accomplishing Other Distinctive Objectives
3 – Understanding Students’ and Other Stakeholders’ Needs


4 – Valuing People
5 – Leading and Communicating


6 – Supporting Institutional Operations


7 – Measuring Effectiveness
8 – Planning Continuous Improvement


9 – Building Collaborative Relationships

D.       Please describe your institution’s rationale for addressing this Primary criterion at this time. Why is this project and its goal(s) one of your “vital few”?

This project is vital for insuring not only the quality of graduate programs at Augsburg but also for assuring that students enrolled in these programs find their experiences at the college to be marked by convenience, strong academic support, and smooth and consistent movement toward their degrees.   Through its impact on the selection of future graduate programs at Augsburg, the Graduate Council will attempt to meet the growing educational needs of the Twin Cities’ diverse workforce. This project also will enhance Augsburg’s reputation and extend the College’s outreach to the surrounding metropolitan area–both to individual students seeking change in their lives and to employers and other local institutions seeking persons with skills in management, leadership, health care, and education.   It will also serve as a means for enhancing faculty research.

E.       List the organizational areas (or institutional departments and divisions) most affected.

The six existing graduate programs, the entire Academic and Student Affairs Division, particularly the academic departments most closely affiliated with graduate study, the Enrollment Services offices, and other governing bodies involved in the curriculum development and approval process (Graduate Academic Affairs Committee, Academic Affairs Committee, and Faculty Senate).

F.       List and briefly describe the critical processes most affected.

Graduate curriculum approval processes; graduate course and program revision, development, and assessment; faculty development; graduate admissions and recruitment.

G.       List some process measures that you might track as you work on this Action Project.

•  Effectiveness of policies for graduate programs

•  Student enrollment in graduate programs

•  Student satisfaction with graduate studies

•  Timely progress in curricular planning, enrollment, and catalog publication.

H.             List some outcomes measures you might track to see if you achieve your goal(s) in this Project.

•  Number of graduate degrees granted

•  Number and quality of graduate theses and final projects

•  Successful placement of program graduates

•  Courses developed and revised under curriculum guidelines

•  Faculty involvement in planning, teaching, and review of graduate programs

I.       If you were to establish measurable “stretch” targets for this Project, what might they look like?

Year Possible Stretch Target(s) for this project
One Description and delineation of the responsibilities of Graduate Academic Affairs Committee and the Graduate Council. Articulation and implementation of admissions processes, curricular review, graduate faculty approval. Articulation of a strategic plan for graduate education at Augsburg. Alignment of goals of graduate programs with the mission of the College.
Two Two new master’s degree programs are to be added to Augsburg’s graduate offerings. A significant number of faculty members from academic departments across the college are included in the development and offering of these new programs. A joint graduate programs catalog is to be published.
Three A visibility campaign is undertaken to strengthen Augsburg’s reputation as an institution providing excellent graduate programs.

J.       Briefly describe some approaches you might use to keep your institution’s attention and energies focused on this Project and its goal(s).

•  Study professional needs of the Twin Cities metropolitan area through professional organizations and community contacts and articulate an institutional strategy for meeting these needs

•  Conduct focus groups to envision the place and purpose of graduate studies within the institution and to provide a forum for broader input and support of programmatic changes.

•  Gather student input on graduate education through a survey assessing current requirements and future needs.

•  What do you see as the pros and cons of giving publicity (and therefore high visibility, inside and outside your institution) to this Project and its goal(s)?


Pros (reasons why high visibility could be positive) Cons (reasons why high visibility could be negative)
•  A more intentional, campus-wide focus on graduate programs will ultimately enhance the quality and relevance of our non-traditional programming

•  Increased visibility for Augsburg’s graduate programs will lead to higher enrollments and greater revenues

•  Increased attention will generate excitement and interest, both internally and externally, in Augsburg’s distinctive education through its graduate programs

•  Increased enrollments in graduate programs could strain the human and financial resources of the College

•  Increased attention to graduate programs could change the reputation of the college, giving it a greater resemblance to a university