Program review is a systematic way to meet both the legislative and university intent to assess the quality of our academic degree programs while determining ways to improve the quality of education, research and service. The seven-year review period enables degree programs to better align their goals and plans with those of the college and university. This process is designed to build a better understanding of the whole program among faculty, staff and university leadership.
The program review process is composed of four elements:
- Self-Study by Department – The Self-Study is a comprehensive report about the degree programs offered. The self-study contains the departmental vision, mission, goals, and recommendations based on an analysis of the program and measurable performance indicators. The findings confirm the program's relevance and viability within the context of the university, the discipline, and the Florida Board of Governors' Strategic Plan. The document focuses on program performance based on an analysis of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Challenges (SWOC) and charts a course of continuous program improvement. The academic unit has the responsibility to develop the self-study. The departmental self-study team should include the department chair or designee, one or more senior faculty members of the department, and staff, as assigned. The college dean or designee needs to approve the self-study, as well as Florida International University's Academic Planning and Accountability (APA).
- External Review – An external consultant visit provides an objective outsider's assessment on the quality of the program.
- Improvement Action Plan – The findings of the self-study and the recommendations of the external consultant will guide the development, by the academic unit, of an improvement action plan. The plan would reflect the consensus of the unit and college in areas related to enhancing student learning and continuous quality improvement.
- The Recommendations of the Units/Colleges to the Provost – In close collaboration with the unit, the dean of the college would submit written recommendations to the Office of the Provost to improve the academic program under review. The recommendations would reflect the collective thinking of the college in regards to charting the most optimal improvement course of the program. These recommendations would be based on the findings of the self-study, consultant recommendations, the college's strategic goals and priorities, and available resources. A written response from the Provost or the Provost's designee, would confirm the alignment of the recommendations of the college with the university's mission and strategic plan, and the Florida Board of Governors' Strategic Plan.
Program review focuses on evaluating degree programs for continuous quality improvements. An indication of success for the program review process is that the questions and larger issues it raises trigger the faculty, Dean, Provost and staff to conduct additional evaluations and assessments.