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IRP Annual Report 2000-2001

Annual Report
Fiscal Year 2002

Departmental Mission

The State University of West Georgia's strong commitment to "Educational Excellence in a Personal Environment" is central to the mission of the Office of Institutional Research and Planning. The Office has, as its primary mission, the collection of data (from both internal and external sources), and the timely analysis, distribution, and presentation of this information for use in planning, decision-making, and policy formulation at the University.

The Office is also responsible for ensuring the accuracy of vital University statistics, and for reporting these data to a broad spectrum of information consumers including regulatory entities, management, faculty, private organizations, and the general public. A major function of the Office is to respond to diverse requests for data from members of the University community, and to assist it with research and assessment methodology, evaluation, and analysis.

Institutional Research and Planning further serves as records custodian for the State University of West Georgia. In this capacity, it promotes the efficient administration and management of State governmental records in compliance with the Georgia Records Act and the Georgia Open Records Act. Institutional Research and Planning advises departments of appropriate records-keeping techniques and systems, and guides in the development of records retention schedules.

Departmental Statement of Goals, Process to Assess These Goals, and Assessment Results:

Goal 1: Serve the executive functions of the institution by providing a reliable and proactive management and decision support system.

Assessment for Goal 1: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, dean, directors, and department chairs.

Goal 2: Promote the improvement of West Georgia’s planning process in compliance with Board of Regents Policy and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools criteria.

Assessment for Goal 2: Compliance with Board of Regents planning process as well as the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools criteria.

Goal 3: Refine and update the operation of the IRP web site to include more data that are easily accessible by University offices and the external public. Examples will include planning data for academic departments, enrollment reports by semester, the Common Data Set, on-line fact book, research reports, and information on records retention (

Assessment for Goal 3: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, deans, directors, and department chairs.

Goal 4: Generate data, information, and analytical reports on institutional research topics designed to improve information usage in the University planning process.

Assessment for Goal 4: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, deans, directors, and department chairs.

Goal 5: Publish a printed mini fact book (Just the Facts), with distribution in July.

Assessment for Goal 5: Receipt of mini fact books from printers by July deadline.

Goal 6: Assist the executive and administrative officers of the University in institutional assessment in order to promote increased institutional effectiveness.

Assessment for Goal 6: Compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools criteria; compliance with Board of Regents academic program review criteria.

Goal 7: Provide systematic collection and reporting of standard institutional, regional, environmental, and student-centered information for institutional planning and assessment.

Assessment for Goal 7: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, deans, directors, and department chairs; meet deadlines and requirements for external and internal data requests such as surveys, Common Data Set, and government reports.

Goal 8: Reply in a punctual manner to spontaneous requests for descriptive information data, and analytical reports.

Assessment for Goal 8: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, deans, directors, and department chairs; maintain log of data requests to include date request was submitted, type of request, deadline of request, and date request was completed.

Goal 9: Provide guidelines and standards to the various departments for the establishment and continued maintenance of successful individual records management programs that meet compliance with the Georgia Records Act and the Open Records Act.

Assessment for Goal 9: Continuous feedback from the President, vice presidents, deans, directors, and department chairs; established and maintained an on-line resource guide for records retention; continuous feedback from the Board of Regents and the State Department of Archives.

Goal 10: Participate in professional associations and professional development opportunities.

Assessment for Goal 10: Each staff member will attend at least one meeting or a professional association or will participate in a professional development session.

Departmental Statement of Outcomes, Processes to Assess These Outcomes, and Assessment Results Where Appropriate

Outcome 1: Provide timely and accurate information to both internal and external constituents.

Assessment of Outcome 1: Establishment and maintenance of IRP work log to track type of data request, date of request, request deadline, and date request was completed; periodic assessment of constituents to measure the department’s timeliness and accuracy of data provided.

Outcome 2: Provide information that is needed by the UWG community as well as the Board of Regents to facilitate policy and procedural planning.

Assessment of Outcome 2: Periodic assessment of UWG community and Board of Regents to ensure adequate information is generated by the IRP office.

Outcome 3: Provide accurate information to the UWG community on records retention as set forth under the Georgia Records Act, Georgia Open Records Act, and Board of Regents policy.

Assessment of Outcome 3: Compliance with the Georgia Records Act; compliance with the Board of Regents policies regarding records retention; periodic assessment of how records retention information is being implemented by departments.

Outcome 4: Comply with the Georgia Open Records Act regarding the dissemination of information to the outside community.

Assessment of Outcome 4: Compliance with the law regarding public information disclosure; compliance with the law regarding the timeliness of releasing public information, review of each ORA request to make sure policy was followed.

General Statement of Departmental Condition

In general, the condition of the Department of Institutional Research and Planning is good. While the department has made significant improvements to its processes over the past two years in the wake of a new director, the department has continued to enjoy a long-term reputation for providing timely and accurate information. The improvements over the past two years were adopted to compliment this reputation by increasing IRP’s presence throughout the UWG community, increasing the use of technology for a greater ease in data dissemination, and focusing on procedures in order to comply with the state record and open record laws.

Based upon a recent IRP survey of the UWG campus, there is still evidence to suggest that IRP needs to increase its visibility throughout the entire campus, to educate some staff and faculty on reports and data provided by IRP, and to increase awareness of the state laws regarding records retention and public record dissemination.

Departmental Achievements

During the past year, the Department of Institutional Research and Planning has completed the following:

  1. Significantly re-designed the IRP web site to make it easier to navigate and to include more useful information and reports.
  2. Completed an on-line collection system for academic departmental Annual Reports.
  3. Created a system to make non-academic departmental Annual Reports more consistent.
  4. Significantly re-designed the department’s office files and filing procedures to comply with the Georgia Records Act and Board of Regents Records Policy.
  5. Worked in cooperation with the Academic Affairs Vice President’s office to develop effective academic program review policies and procedures.
  6. Created a more user friendly web-based fact book to replace the printed version.
  7. Created a smaller printed version of the fact book (Just the Facts) for distribution to the University and external communities.
  8. Designed and created a SACS Accreditation web site for use in the University’s self study (fall 2001) and to facilitate the SACS visitation team (spring 2003).
Staff Productivity
  1. Completed over 150 requests for information including data requests, projects, Open Records requests, and external surveys.
  2. Completed over 85 clinical agreements and memorandum of understanding. These are contractual agreements between UWG and other institutions that offer clinical experience to students.
  3. The department was represented in a university-wide ad hoc committee on strategic planning.
  4. The director of the department served a two-year role as chair of a university steering committee on student retention.
  5. Members of the department attended the Southeastern Association of Institutional Research conference; the director also presented a research paper at this conference.
  6. Participated in the annual SACS conference
  7. Participated in a special American Association of Higher Education workshop on Assessment.
  8. The department is represented on the SACS self-study steering committee.
  9. Participated in the Georgia Records Association annual conference.
  10. Participated in various SAS (computer programming) workshops.
  11. Staff members participated as members of the Staff Appreciation Day Committee
  12. IRP’s Senior Administrative Assistant was elected by her peers to assume the duties as Chair of the Staff Advisory Committee.
  13. Participated in the University System Office’s Staff Conference.
  14. Participated in the IPEDS Workshop.