Progress Report on Recently Expired AQIP Projects
As NMU embarks on new AQIP action projects, three from the past year expired Oct. 14. They include efforts to evaluate the effectiveness of the laptop goal in terms of both student learning and student recruitment, and developing a knowledge management system (KMS) infrastructure to support the Road Map to 2015 strategic plan.
A committee chaired by Darlene Walch (AIS) determined that the laptop program’s original goal was achieved: it created a learning environment that embraced technology for student access, promoted development of independent learners and fostered greater student-faculty communication and collaboration.
“From this positive position, the committee also recognizes that ongoing review of the program could lead to improvement," she added. “It would be advantageous to move beyond the question of whether we created a learning environment that embraced technology to the next question of what effect that environment has on student learning.”
Walch said the latter question requires faculty involvement and opens the door for numerous scholarship opportunities. Areas of inquiry might include the impact of technology on student learning within specific courses or programs of study, the effect of technology on student-faculty communication at NMU, and the type of teaching, classroom strategies or assignments might further the development of independent learning skills.
Another project identified a process to evaluate if the laptop program has increased the size and quality of the NMU student body. Feedback collected from Admissions recruiters and data analysis of the annual “New Student Orientation” and a periodic survey distributed to parents of new freshman applicants who chose not to attend the University suggests the program was a success and effective in recruitment strategies
The KMS project proved too complex to complete in one year, which is why it is being continued. The ultimate goal is to leverage existing information to enhance planning and decision-making. A KMS would facilitate analysis, reporting and peer benchmarking by giving employees ready access to NMU’s documented base of facts. Internal data collected by Banner-based systems, along with informal internal data, images and documents could be combined with imported external data such as HEIDI and IPEDS. The process would use existing software tools and information systems supported by the university.
For more information on these projects and those selected for the coming year, visit AQIP Projects.