Program Review

Instructions for Departmental Program Reviews

Accredited Programs

  • Is your program accredited, certified or licensed by an external professional review body? If the answer is yes, the department chair will report to the Provost’s Office the date the self-study will be submitted and when the visitation by external reviewers will occur.
  • The department chair will submit the self-study and evaluation required by the discipline’s accreditation body when it is completed to the Provost’s Office (5 copies on CDs).

Non-Accredited Programs

The AHECB Existing Program Review Policy adopted in October 2008 requires the review of all academic programs every 7-10 years. A major component of the policy is an internal review (self-study) by institutions and an external review by consultants of programs that do not have program-specific accreditation/licensure/certification. The institution’s self-study, consultants’ written evaluation, and the institution’s response to the consultants’ findings will be submitted to ADHE.

The institutional self-study to be reviewed by external consultants should contain the following information:

Goals, Objectives, and Activities
  1. Describe specific educational goals, objectives, and activities of the program.
  2. Explain how the program serves the general education program and other disciplinary programs on the campus, if applicable.
  3. Document market demand and/or state/industry need for careers stemming from the program.
  4. Document student demand for the program.
  1. Describe how program content parallels current thinking/trends in the field/trade (best practices, advisory committee recommendations, etc.).
  2. Provide an outline for each program curriculum, including the sequence of courses.
  3. State the degree requirements, including general education requirements, institutional, college or school requirements, and major requirements.
  4. Indicate the semester/year the major/program courses were last offered. Exclude general education courses.
  5. Provide syllabi for discipline-specific courses and departmental objectives for each course.
  6. Outline the process for the introduction of new courses, including all internal curriculum review processes and the findings.
  7. List courses in the proposed degree program currently offered by distance delivery.
  8. Describe the instructor-to-student and student-to-student interaction for distance courses (prerequisite courses, lab requirements, examination procedures-online/proctored, instructor response to student assignments).

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Program Faculty (full-time/adjunct/part-time)
  1. Provide curriculum vitae or program faculty information form for all full-time program faculty. The vita or form should include the following: all degrees and institutions granting the degrees; field or specialty of degrees; number of years employed as program faculty at the institution; current academic rank, if applicable; professional certifications/licenses; evidence of quality and quantity of creative and scholarly/research activity; evidence of quality and quantity of service activities; evidence of professional activities and non-teaching work experiences related to courses taught; list of course numbers/course titles of credit courses taught over the past two academic years; and other evidence of quality teaching.
  2. Indicate the academic credentials required for adjunct/part-time faculty teaching major/program courses.
  3. Describe the orientation and evaluation processes for faculty, including adjunct and part-time faculty.
  4. Provide average number of courses and number of credit hours taught for full-time program faculty for current academic year.

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Program Resources
  1. Describe the institutional support available for faculty development in teaching, research, and service.
  2. Describe the professional development of full-time program faculty over the past two years including the institutional financial support provided to faculty for the activities.
  3. Provide the annual library budget for the program or describe how library resources are provided for the program.
  4. Describe the availability, adequacy, and accessibility of campus resources (research, library, instructional support, instructional technology, etc.).
  5. Provide a list of program equipment purchases for the past three years.

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Instruction via Distance Technology

This section should be completed if at least 50% of any program/major course is delivered electronically.

  1. Summarize institutional policies on the establishment, organization, funding, and management of distance courses/degrees.
  2. Summarize the policies and procedures to keep the technology infrastructure current.
  3. Summarize the procedures that assure the security of personal information.
  4. Describe the support services that will be provided to students enrolled in distance technology courses/programs by the institution and/or other entities:
    • Advising
    • Course registration
    • Financial aid
    • Course withdrawal
    • E-mail account
    • Access to library resources
    • Help Desk
  5. Describe technology support services that will be provided to students enrolled in distance technology courses/programs by the institution and/or other entities.
  6. Describe the orientation for students enrolled in distance technology courses/programs.
  7. Summarize the institutional policy for faculty course load and number of credit hours taught, compensation, and ownership of intellectual property.

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Majors/Declared Students
  1. State the number of undergraduate/graduate majors/declared students in each degree program under review for the past three years.
  2. Describe strategies to recruit, retain, and graduate students.
  3. Provide the number of program graduates over the past three years.
Program Assessment
  1. Describe the program assessment process and provide outcomes data (standardized entrance/placement test results, exit test results, etc.).
  2. Describe program/major exit or capstone requirements.
  3. Provide information on how teaching is evaluated, the use of student evaluations, and how the results have affected the curriculum.
  4. Provide transfer information for major/declared students including the receiving institutions for transfer and programs of study.
  5. Provide information for program graduates continuing their education by entering graduate school or by performing volunteer service.
  6. Provide aggregate results of student/alumni/employer satisfaction surveys.
  7. Describe how the program is aligned with the current job market needs of the state or local communities.
  8. Provide job placement information for program graduates including the number of graduates placed in jobs related to the field of study.

For undergraduate career and technical education programs only, provide the following:

  • Names and location of companies hiring program graduates.
  • Average hourly rate for program graduates.
  • Names of companies requiring the certificate/degree for initial or continued employment.

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Program Effectiveness (strengths, opportunities)
  1. List the strengths of the program.
  2. List the areas of the program most in need of improvement.
  3. List program improvements accomplished over the past two years.
  4. Describe planned program improvements, including a timetable and the estimated costs.
  5. Identify program improvement priorities.
Institutional Review Team

List the names/departments of the self-study committee chair and committee members.

Original – 11/07/08
Revised – 1/22/09
Revised – 2/05/09
Final – 3/2/09
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Suggested Program Review Timeline

Report areas:
  1. Goals, Objectives and Activities
  2. Curriculum
  3. Faculty/Resources
  4. Instruction offered via Distance Technology
  5. Students
  6. Assessment
  7. Program Effectiveness
Recommended Committees:
  1. Curriculum
    • Instruction offered via distance technology
  2. Faculty/Resources
  3. Students
  4. Assessment
    • Goals, Objectives, Activities
  5. Writing Committee
Academic Year Before Site Visit


  1. Activities
      1. Form committees
        • Curriculum CommitteeReview current curriculum within the context of current best practices – need to document parallelsDetermine if any curricular changes need to be made based on review
        • Assessment CommitteeReview assessment outcome data
          • To what extent are students achieving program goals?
          • Where does the program need to be strengthened?

          Determine how you will document need for program.

          • Alumni survey*
          • Employee survey*
          • Student survey*

          Determine how you will document demand for program.

          • Viability averages – graduates
          • Average number of majors previous 3 years
          • Number of applicants to program previous 3 years
      2. Identify Possible Site Team


      • Two out-of-state reviewers affiliated with programs that are similar in mission and scope
      • No one with a professional or personal tie to program faculty or staff
      • Present list of 5 possible reviewers to ADHE


  1. Activities
    1. Curriculum Committee
      • Process identified needed curricular changes
      • Beginning compiling information for report:
        • Curriculum outline
        • All requirements (core, major, university, etc).
        • Matrix of when courses are offered
        • Syllabi for degree-specific courses with learning objectives
        • Outline of process for new course approval
        • Information on Instruction via Distance Technology if applicable
    2. Faculty/Resources
      • Compile information for report
    3. Students
      • Compile information for report
    4. Assessment Committee
      • Collect need/demand data
        • Alumni survey
        • Employee survey
        • Student survey
      • Compile other data needed for report
Academic Year of Site Visit


  1. Activities
    1. Use materials and information collected previous year to write report.
      • Program Effectiveness (strengths, opportunities).
        • List the strengths of the program.
        • List the areas of the program most in need of improvement.
        • List program improvements accomplished over the past two years.
        • Describe planned program improvements, including a timetable and the estimated costs. Identify program improvement priorities.
    2. Send report to site team


  1. Activities
    • Site Visit

*Required by ADHE