North Texas Daily

QEP is the first step for reaccreditation

QEP is the first step for reaccreditation

November 20
08:37 2013

Andrew Freeman / Staff Writer

The university is asking students what they can do to enhance student-learning experience at UNT as part of the Quality Enhancement Plan to get the university reaccredited.

The QEP will be created after hearing what students have to say to their question by a committee of 20 people, composed of students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members. Ultimately, it will lead to a five-year plan UNT must implement to have a significant impact on student learning.

“It’s just a conversation,” said Mike Simmons, senior associate director for the Center for Learning Enhancement, Assessment and Redesign and one of the facilitators of the QEP. “It’s the students’ way of demonstrating to the university that you can innovate, and demonstrating to the SAC that you’re serious about learning.”

The QEP is only a part of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schoolsaccreditation program , which takes place every ten years. It was last conducted in 2006, and the process is so lengthy the university has to start now. The QEP is one of the biggest parts of the program.

“It’s hard to have a conversation with 30,000 to 40,000 students in a short amount of time, so we’re starting now,” Simmons said. “It allows an opportunity to come up with something innovative and interesting, which is an opportunity you don’t get often.”

From their answers, the council will divide them into topics to organize in the spring, before having another survey.

“It’s like a funnel, where it starts broad and eventually just gets down to one item,” Simmons said. “It’s important students know they can and should be in the process, because it ultimately impacts them.”

However, Simmons said the QEP does have a few parameters such as a focus on learning outcomes and the environment surrounding student development.

Professional and technical communications junior Phoebe Archibald said students think it is a great opportunity.

“This allows better service for students,” Archibald said. “This gives the university a focus point as something they can fix.”

This allows other students an opportunity to state their grievances. Communications senior Xavier Henderson said not having a union is a big problem, and asked why the university can’t facilitate other options for space.

“I’m in quite a few organizations,” Henderson said. “It becomes a hindrance for us to meet and get things done. Why can’t we look at the Coliseum or the Gateway Center? After all, we’re paying Union fees.”

Henderson said he wants to voice his opinion.

“I think it’s a good idea to get the opinion by the students considering we pay thousands of dollars a year to go here,” Henderson said. “Our opinion is of great importance.”

A link to the QEP along with more information about the accreditation process can be found here.

“I hope students feel they have a voice and impact on the process,” Simmons said. “Hopefully we get a good topic that can impact students positively.”

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