Tuesday, March 27, 2012

College community to pick final QEP topic from remaining field of three

After months of collaboration, brainstorming and good old-fashioned hard work on the part of more than 200 faculty and staff, Daytona State College is now in the final stretch leading to the selection of a topic for its first-ever Quality Enhancement Plan.

Last week, Daytona State President Carol Eaton announced three teams which are finalists in the topic selection process. They were among seven teams that were asked early this year to develop proposals for topics and contend to have theirs be the one that will ultimately be the subject of the Daytona State QEP. The topic finalists are preparing proposals dealing with student retention, critical thinking and student motivation.
The QEP is part of the reaffirmation process all colleges must undergo for accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. This relatively new component is intended to be a plan of action designed to enhance teaching and student learning. The final topic and its resulting plan of action must meet specific SACS criteria, be research-based, measurable and fiscally viable.
Daytona State President Carol Eaton commended all faculty and staff who have been working for more than a year to research, explore and develop potential QEP topics, particularly noting the enthusiasm and dedication shown by members of the seven teams who brought their proposals forward earlier this month.  “Even if your proposal was not selected among the final three, I want to encourage you to further develop them and bring them forth through other channels such as the Planning Council,” she said. “Your efforts are greatly appreciated, and all the proposals hold merit and value.”
The next steps in the topic selection process will culminate with a college-wide vote. In coming weeks, the remaining teams will present their topic proposals via the college’s website and participate in what is being dubbed “The Great QEP Debate,” which will take place on Friday, April 13. The entire college community will vote for the final QEP topic two weeks later.
The QEP topic selection process began during Fall Planning 2010, when faculty and staff participated in workshops to brainstorm a list of more than 200 potential topics. During the months that followed, those ideas were refined and combined to roughly two dozen candidates and then synthesized further to 10 remaining possibilities. From those, three general areas of focus - retention, critical thinking and student motivation - were selected based on a survey of the college community, and seven teams convened to develop more targeted proposals to be reviewed by the college’s SACS Topic Selection Committee. This committee was comprised of senior academics and administrators, as well as District Board of Trustees representative, Mrs. Betty Holness, who reviewed all seven proposals. The committee concluded that the three finalist proposals selected best meet the criteria of the SACS rubric used to evaluate them.