Appendix A: Guidelines for the Self-Study Report and Review Process for Academic Units
1. Self-Study Preparation
Detail how the self-study was prepared including how it was shared with the entire program and who contributed to the preparation of the report and in what capacity.
2. Overview and Mission
Provide a brief history of the program and its mission; discuss its organization; and outline its major academic responsibilities.
3. Assessment of Quality
Reflect on the state of the discipline(s) represented by the faculty, and examine the unit's engagement with the broad intellectual environment of the discipline: what are the current debates in the field; where is the field likely to be five or ten years from now; and what might need to occur in the local context in order to ensure that Columbia maintains and/or improves its standing in the field in light of the challenges presented.
Make comparisons with peer departments, in terms of disciplinary identity, FTEs, size of graduate and undergraduate program, and other relevant criteria. Are there any areas of overlap or duplication of services with other campus units?
Provide information about the ranking of the department in national surveys, and the department’s interpretation of its ranking. Provide any comparative data from surveys, rankings, etc., that indicate success relative to that of peer institutions.
The self-study should include an accurate and comprehensive description identifying both strengths and weaknesses. It should discuss internal improvements possible through reallocation of existing resources and improvements that can only be addressed through additional resources.
4. Description of Academic Programs
Summarize instructional activities of the program, including their relationship to instructional activities of other programs. Include a description of any interdisciplinary instructional efforts and of any unique educational ventures.
a. Undergraduate Education (See Appendix C)
Provide information on degree requirements, curricular innovations, student quality, service to non-majors, and, when available, the placement of majors.
b. Graduate Education (See Appendix D)
Provide information on degree requirements, curricular innovations, student quality, and the placement of M.A. and Ph.D. students.
c. Research and Sponsored Programs
Describe the nature of the research enterprise. Include a brief description of any special affiliated entities devoted to research and development.
Statistical information about sponsored research is made available by the Office of the EVPAS, though programs may be asked to provide additional information that the programs have that is not otherwise available to the Office of the EVPAS.
Statistical information about faculty (e.g., rank, tenure status, demographic statistics), and administrative support services (e.g., administrative personnel) are made available by the Office of the EVPAS.
Describe the types and levels of personnel associated with the program and their roles relative to the overall mission and activities of the program. Provide a statement addressing the demographics of the area faculty in regards to gender and race/ethnicity and include information on future plans, including searches and hires.
Provide information on space and other special equipment and facilities that are available to the program.
Describe linkages within Columbia University, Barnard, Teachers College, and with any external entities that support the program, including development and alumni relations efforts where applicable. Financial arrangements with donors should be clearly described.
6. Governance and Leadership
Briefly describe the administrative organization and decision making structures. An ARC review is an opportunity to review the unit’s existing by-laws or principles of governance in effect, a copy of which should be included as an Appendix.
7. Plans for the Future
Describe plans for the next five- to ten- year period. What are the program's specific objectives and priorities? How will current strengths be built upon and weaknesses addressed? How do future plans relate to future directions in the field or fields covered by the program? How well positioned is the program to play a significant
role in those areas? What, if any, are the barriers to these aspirations? Be as introspective and candid as possible.