Welcome to the UMW QEP Development website. This is the place, on the web, to stay abreast with our progress toward a final Quality Enhancement Plan. We, as an institution, have chosen to enhance the First Year Experience for first year – first time undergraduate students at UMW. This site will detail our progress toward a final plan, which we will showcase during our SACS reaffirmation site visits coming up in the spring 2013. We hope this “Homepage” will provide some basic background and perspective on the purpose and meaning of Quality Enhancement Plans.
What SACS says
From the SACS-COC Handbook for Institutions Seeking Reaffirmation: “By definition, the QEP describes a carefully designed course of action that addresses a well-defined and focused topic or issue related to enhancing student learning. The QEP should be embedded within the institution’s ongoing integrated institution-wide planning and evaluation process and may very well evolve from this existing process or from other processes related to the institution’s internal reaffirmation review.” (p. 38)
More Important for UMW
While it is true that SACS requires UMW to develop a QEP, that is not the primary reason we need a Quality Enhancement Plan. The highest quality teaching and learning are the core of our mission as a university. We can achieve improvements in student learning by following the ideas embodied in the QEP development process. In short, SACS is simply the teeth behind a really good idea.
Between now and spring 2012, the QEP Project Team will conduct a study designed to examine current practices related to the first year experience, collect data to assess the effectiveness of UMW’s existing practices, identify areas for improvement in those practices based upon the data, and identify student learning outcomes for a first year experience at UMW. In spring 2012, the QEP Project Team will submit an action plan to the provost containing a refined set of focused recommendations to realize those outcomes, including a preliminary budget and timeline for implementation. Between spring 2012 and the reaffirmation visit by the on-site review team, the QEP Project Team will work with the Office of the Provost on a variety of tasks, including: to solicit peer review from external reviewers, facilitate feedback on the QEP proposal from the larger UMW community, and make final adjustments to the plan.