Kansas Board of Regents evaluates action plan for underperforming college programs • Kansas Reflector

TOPEKA — Jewish studies, philosophy, geography, physics: The Kansas Board of Regents is deciding which underperforming programs at state universities will be eliminated and which will undergo a progress review.

Last summer, a KBOR study found undergraduate programs that were more than five years old and did not meet two or more of the board’s indicators for six state universities.

Criteria include having 25 or more students enrolled in the program, producing 10 or more graduates, 51 percent or more of graduates working in the region after graduation and return on investment for students. That return is assessed on an annual salary of $38,050 or more, determined by the five-year median salary after graduation in 2022.

These indicators put 31 projects at risk. Schools with underperforming programs have three options: cancel the program, merge the program with another program in a cost-effective manner, or develop an action plan to improve metrics over three years.

under review

pittsburgh state university

Plans reviewed: six

Action plan: BSc Mathematics, BSc History, BSc Polymer Chemistry, BSc Physics, BSc Music

Eliminated: Bachelor of Business Administration in International Business

University of Kansas

Plans reviewed: 11

Action Plan: General Studies/BA in African and African American Studies, General Studies/BA in American Studies, BA in Global International Studies, General Studies/BA in Religious Studies, BA Studies in Judaism, BA/BS in Astronomy, BS in Atmospheric Science Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of General Studies/Arts/Sciences Geography, Music courses classified as Bachelor of Music or Bachelor of Fine Arts/Bachelor of Musical Arts, Bachelor of Engineering Physics

Combined: Bachelor of Secondary Education with Additional Secondary Education in Physics

kansas state university

Plans reviewed: Two

Action Plan: Bachelor of Arts/Science in Geography, Bachelor of Arts in Music/Bachelor of Music Program

emporia state university

Plans reviewed: Two

Phased Out: Bachelor of Science in Business Education Education

Action Plan: Bachelor of Arts in Theater Arts

Wichita State University

Plans reviewed: five

Action plan: BA in Philosophy, BA/BS in Geology, BA/BS in Physics, BA in Forensic Science

Combined: Bachelor of Arts in Women, Race, and Intersectional Studies

fort hays state university

Plans reviewed: five

Action Plan: Bachelor of Music in Music Education, Bachelor of Arts in Foreign Languages: Spanish, Bachelor of Arts/Science in Physics, and Bachelor of Arts in Music

Combined: Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy

On Tuesday, Directors of the Board of Trustees’ Academic Affairs Standing Committee Review plan recommendationsthe final step before it is scheduled to be presented to the full board later this month.

Regent Alicia Johnston said lessons involving identity are important, but performance must also be a factor.

“I think that’s important, too,” Johnston said. “But I still stand by the fact that I believe some of these things, if we don’t achieve three of the four goals, then we have to be able to take action and make progress on how to get there. We’re going to let this go Get on track.

Earlier this year, board members discussed the impact of several of these programs, such as Jewish Studies and Africana Studies, which offer rigorous study and opportunities but appear to be underperforming by KBOR metrics.

“I don’t want to see these courses disappear completely,” said Regent Diana Mendoza. “I think they’re valuable and I think we need to continue to provide those opportunities for students, but I also think we need to allocate resources efficiently.”

The University of Kansas has the most affected programs, with 11 programs under review, 10 of which are recommended for action and one program recommended for consolidation.

According to the University of Kansas’ Action Plan, Jewish Studies allows students to engage in impactful research, including through the Druze Studies Project, a digital humanities project that studies Druze culture, literature and history.

Students receive research scholarships and have the opportunity to write journal articles. The university’s program said it held a “Druze Studies” symposium last year with the participation of 25 international scholars, another valuable experience.

“One of the students is currently writing a research article as a follow-up to this incident, which is testament to the lasting impact of their participation,” the university said in defense of the scheme. “This experience has also opened doors for him in the world of academic publishing, as he was recently hired as an editorial assistant at the New Journal of Druze Studies.”

Emporia State University reviewed two programs. The agency has phased out or consolidated 20% of projects under KBOR’s decision to be approved in 2022 Fire tenured professorsand eliminate programs without explaining which programs are targeted.

American Association of University Professors investigation ESU President Ken Hush then summarized the actions taken: Regency support Nothing more than an attack on academic freedom. Investigation of university administrators and Kansas board of trustees members concludes “Not suitable for leadership.”

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