Career-oriented education is at the core of the mission of Ferris State University. The instruction that meets this goal occurs primarily at the program level. An effective academic program review process is essential for the health of the University’s degree programs. The academic program review process strives to ensure the quality and academic integrity of all programs through continuous program improvement. At its most basic, the program review process is simply a review of the good works, processes, procedures, and measured learning outcome results that programs develop as they strive for continuous improvement.
Academic program review (APR) has been present at Ferris State University since 1988. The APR process is an important measure of program quality and is an example of how the University meets regional accreditation expectations by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). HLC Criterion 4 (Teaching and Learning; Evaluation and Improvement) states, in part: “The institution ensures the quality of its educational offerings. The institution maintains a practice of regular program reviews and acts upon the findings.” As part of a larger institutional system that collects, disseminates, and evaluates institutional information, an effective academic program review process provides evidence that the University meets the criterion. At Ferris State University, academic program review is a faculty-led process conducted with administrative input and support. The Academic Program Review Council is comprised of representatives from all Senate Units. Through its recommendations, the Council serves the Academic Senate, the Provost’s Office, and the President.