L&S Academic Program Review - Resources, Guidelines, Templates, and Advice
All academic programs offered at UW-Madison must be regularly reviewed. Reviews require faculty and staff to compile information about the program under review, reflect on the information gathered, and produce an evaluative report that is submitted to the dean. This document provides links to data resources to help faculty and staff engaged in that work.
In April 2022, the University Academic Planning Council updated campus level communication about program review process and procedure. This document will be revised to reflect and reinforce those revisions. ~~ emk, 5/23/2022
This document has been created to help faculty and staff who are engaged in reviewing L&S academic programs, which will require gathering information about the programs as a foundation for thoughtful reflection on the quality and purpose of the program, and of student performance in it.
Contact: For questions about reviews and the review process, the first person to contact will often be the Academic Associate Dean responsible for the program (see L&S Departments, Programs, Centers & Institutes by Divisional Associate Dean ). The Academic Associate Deans work closely with the Associate Dean for Academic Planning, who coordinates the review process for the college. Please contact Elaine M. Klein, Ph.D - 307D South Hall - 265-8484 - elaine.klein<at>wisc.edu with any questions you may have.
Information About the L&S Program Review Policy and Process
- L&S Academic Program Review - An Overview
- L&S Guidelines for Program Review
- L&S Policy on Review of Certificate Programs
- L&S Academic Program Review - Frequently Asked Questions
- Information about students: DAPIR conducts regular studies of enrollment trends (https://data.wisc.edu/enrollment/), awards granted (https://data.wisc.edu/degrees/), student retention and persistence rates (https://data.wisc.edu/retention-graduation/), time-to-degree (https://data.wisc.edu/time-to-degree/- including graduate program comparison to peer institutions), and many other metrics. We strongly encourage departments to consult these data, consider them in light of similar departments/programs, and reflect on whether or not the data reveal any issues that require attention.
- Information about Faculty and Staff: DAPIR compiles official data and conducts regular studies of trends in Faculty and Staff (https://data.wisc.edu/faculty-staff/); it is also the institutional office responsible for participation in the Academic Analytics project. Salary comparisons are also available through DAPIR (https://data.wisc.edu/faculty-compensation/).
- Department-level and Comparative Information: Department Planning Profiles - https://data.wisc.edu/department-planning-profiles/ These documents provide access to ten-year trends in all areas related to academic departments – e.g., FTE in various funding categories, majors and degrees (by headcount and by FTE), credits taught, etc. etc. These represent "official" campus level data, and provide a foundation for comparison across terms (comparing Fall to Fall, and Spring to Spring), or among departments of similar size and focus. Produced since 2011, the DPP is currently undergoing updates and is being redeveloped as part of the visualization project.
- Institution-level Information: For the "big picture" in L&S, it may be useful to know how L&S compares to the rest of campus with respect to student data. The UW-Madison Data Digest - https://data.wisc.edu/data-digest/- contains "official data" for the campus and the various schools and colleges.
The Office of the Registrar houses the official records on programs available and awards conferred in those programs. This office generates regular reports on enrollments in those programs, including trend and student demographic data. See https://registrar.wisc.edu/enrollment-report. Many reports are available, and the Registrar's Office is notably responsive to requests for assistance locating information about individual programs.
The Graduate School publishes program profiles (https://www.gradsch.wisc.edu/mas/) for all of graduate programs. The program level pages include statistical information on admissions, enrollment, student funding, and degrees for each program. For comparison/context, the Divisional Profiles are also available. The Graduate School also conducts regular exit surveys (https://grad.wisc.edu/data/). The Graduate School also compiles a list of data relevant to graduate program administration and review (see https://grad.wisc.edu/graduate-program-resources/).
Templates and Guidelines
L&S Program Review Guidelines are used for degree programs, named options, and undergraduate majors. These guidelines focus on academic programs, and intersect with department/administrative structures only insofar as those structures have an effect on the academic program. This distinction is intended to facilitate more timely review of academic programs, to help ensure compliance with policies calling for completion of review within every ten year period. Departments may conduct reviews of other aspects of their operations (e.g., administrative structure, personnel, research productivity, etc.), but rather than connect this work to a ten-year program review cycle, it may be conducted as needed.
L&S Certificate Program Review Guidelines are used for interdisciplinary graduate, undergraduate, and professional certificate programs. Because certificates are intended to be less resource intensive, a more streamlined process exists to facilitate review. Where applicable, certificate program reviews may be convened prior to or at the same time as other academic programs in a department.