Program review is a look back in time at how effective a program has been at achieving its mission and program outcomes and how it aligns with the College Mission and Educational Master Plan. Program members conduct the review by analyzing consistent data sets provided by the Institutional Planning & Research Office, Program SLO data, and any additional data collected by the members.
Program review is an opportunity for the College to:
- examine the extent to which a program is meeting its mission and contributing to the mission of the College
- develop an understanding of the program's challenges and successes
- use data and evaluation findings to develop goals and actions leading to program improvement
- contribute valuable and important information in support of the college's Educational Master Plan
- be accountable and transparent to our constituents
Guiding Principles for the Institutional Effectiveness Committee
To support and enhance student learning and success, the Pasadena City College Board of Trustees, in October 2010, approved policy 2560, thus establishing and approving the composition of the Institutional Effectiveness Committee (IEC) through mutual agreement of the Board of Trustees and the Academic Senate and in accordance with Shared Governance policy #2000. The committee's purpose and functions were discussed at an Academic Senate meeting in spring of 2010, and the committee was initially convened in November 2010.
With the approval of all represented bodies, the following principles should guide the design and implementation of the Program Review evaluation process:
- Flexibility: The process should be open and flexible in order to accommodate differences among instructional, student and learning services, administrative services, governance and executive units.
- Collegiality: The process should be an honest, collaborative process decided upon by mutual agreement and guided by a spirit of openness and inquiry.
- Innovation: The process should support creative approaches to achieving the college mission.
- Relevance: The process should focus on the required components of the program review process and the important and relevant questions being addressed by the writers of the program review.
- Practicality: Evaluations of program reviews should be as succinct as possible, while addressing all components of the program review structure.
- Effectiveness: The process should provide useful feedback and recommendations to the program reviewers regarding program effectiveness, improvement, and viability.
- Accountability: The process utilized by the IEC should demonstrate transparency and accountability in accordance with the IEC Policy # 2560 and the mission of the IEC.
The committee recognizes the history and philosophy of program review as espoused by the statewide Academic Senate in the following statement, "the principal purposes of the review process are to recognize and acknowledge good performance, to enhance satisfactory performance and help programs which are performing satisfactorily to further their own growth, and to identify weak performance and assist programs in achieving needed improvement ..." ("Program Review: Developing a Faculty Driven Process," Spring 1996) The IEC's evaluation of program reviews will adhere to this nobly stated purpose.
The committee distinguishes between appropriate and inappropriate uses of the program review evaluation process:
- It is designed to evaluate program performance and make recommendations for improvement. It is not a process for evaluating individuals.
- It is designed to help programs improve their performance. It is not a process to be used for eliminating programs. Decisions about discontinuing programs are made through the college's policy on program discontinuance (policy #3210).
- The process should emphasize the development of more effective programs through college-wide dialogue and collaborative efforts. It is not, nor should it appear to be, an adversarial process between faculty and administration.
- The process should have real and positive impacts on program effectiveness and student learning and success. It is not an exercise to fill out a document that sits on a shelf.
- As a result of the program review evaluation process, the IEC should make recommendations to the Board of Trustees, the Superintendent-President, the Curriculum and Instruction Committee, the Resource Allocation Committee, and college programs. However, it is not a committee that makes final decisions regarding curriculum, resource allocation, the accreditation process, or program changes.