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Academic Program Review

The primary goal of academic program review is to examine all aspects of a degree program to identify its strengths and weaknesses and to develop a guide for the program’s future. Program review is critical to university efforts to promote and maintain academic excellence. Palo Alto University is committed to institutionalizing the assessment and planning process into a culture of evidence in a manner that seeks to minimize the impact on existing faculty processes. 
The focus of academic review is on student learning over the entire curriculum, the formal assessment of that learning, and the incorporation of assessment results into departmental and program planning. Therefore, academic program review must consider not only learning related to the major discipline, but also learning as it relates to the University mission and strategic priorities and the University Institutional Learning Goals. Good program review should assess program quality and currency, improve student learning, reflect on the alignment of program goals and learning outcomes with the University’s mission and strategic plans, and provide data and evidence to support institutional planning.

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Academic program reviews are most effective when they engage multiple faculty teaching in the program, students in the program, and relevant administrators, from the development of the self-study to the external evaluation, and to the action steps agreed to by the VPAA/Provost and Departmental and program leadership.