Higher Learning Commission - Accreditation, Fall 2012
Muskingum University will undergo its comprehensive visit for its
PEAQ accreditation on October 22-24. Muskingum University has engaged
the campus community in the self-study report required for
re-accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission. Through this process
Muskingum has learned much about its strengths and opportunities.
Muskingum looks forward to the visit by the peer evaluators, and
requests that it be re-accredited for a period of 10 years.
The Self-Study Process
In September 2010, President Anne Steele met with Dr. Mary Breslin,
who was the HLC liaison for Muskingum University, to discuss the
University’s upcoming PEAQ accreditation. In February 2011, President
Anne Steele appointed Dr. Todd Lekan, Professor of Philosophy, as
Director of the North Central Accreditation process. Dr. Lekan attended
the April 2011, annual conference of the Higher Learning Commission.
Also in April 2011, the President appointed a Steering Committee
consisting of the Officers of the University and the Academic Division
Coordinators. The Steering Committee began to meet regularly and engaged
in four off-campus retreats between March and August 2011. In July
2011, the President and the Director of North Central Accreditation
appointed faculty, students, and staff to five Criterion Committees,
which also began to meet regularly.
In March 2012, the Director of North Central Accreditation, the Vice
President for Academic Affairs, the Vice President for Graduate and
Continuing Studies, a Division Coordinator, and two members of the
faculty attended the Higher Learning Commission’s 2012 Annual Conference
in Chicago and met with Dr. Eric Martin, the HLC Liaison for Muskingum
University. Muskingum is deeply appreciative of Dr. Martin’s visit to
campus in July 2012 to meet with senior administrative leader, the
self-study Steering Committee, an editing team, and a group of staff
members responsible for site visit logistics.
The Criterion Committees collected and organized evidence pertinent
to the five criteria of accreditation. They drafted criterion reports
and submitted them to the editing team in March 2012. Using these
reports, the editing team, working with the Steering Committee, prepared
the Self Study document for submission. A group of reviewers drawn from
faculty and administration commented on the final drafts of the Self
Study document during the summer of 2012.
Purposes announced at the outset of the self-study:
- To identify and enhance quality initiatives.
- To identify challenges and concerns.
- To celebrate strengths.
- To provide a document that will be useful for future strategic planning and accreditation.
- To achieve continuing accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
Criterion Committee Members
During the 2011-2012 year, Muskingum University created a Steering
Committee to oversee the self-study process. Committees comprised of
faculty, staff, and students were created for each of the five criteria
of accreditation. These members are listed here.
Overview of Self-Study Report (PPT)
In pursuit of its mission, Muskingum currently offers 59
undergraduate majors. Combining strong classroom curricula with
fieldwork, independent study, and experiential education opportunities
rarely encountered in an undergraduate setting, Muskingum promotes
active engagement among students, faculty and staff. In the classroom
and laboratory, on the stage or playing field, in the residence and
dining halls, and through internships and study-abroad experiences,
Muskingum offers the environment of a true learning community.
Graduate education grounded in the liberal arts and sciences is an
integral part of the University’s mission. Muskingum currently offers
three graduate degrees—Master of Arts in Education, Master of Arts in
Teaching, and Master of Information Strategy, Systems, and Technology
(MISST)—and has just received approval to establish an Education
Specialist graduate degree.
With a student-faculty ratio of 14:1, Muskingum encourages and
supports student learning with a wide variety of curricular and
co-curricular opportunities that address individual needs and
potentials. The University employs 100 full-time faculty, 6 part-time
faculty, and 94 adjunct faculty. Muskingum’s current annual operating
revenue is $52 million and its endowment is valued at $64 million. A
comprehensive campaign has raised more than $86 million, far exceeding
its $55 million goal.
Over the past decade, Muskingum has experienced unprecedented growth
and transformation. The most visible symbol of the transformation is the
institution’s 2009 name change from “college” to “university.” In the
past ten years, Muskingum has added 13 new undergraduate majors, 12 new
graduate programs, launched the Muskingum Adult Program (MAP), and began
offering two new degrees: a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master
of Information Strategy, Systems and Technology.
Five new educational facilities have been constructed, adding 80,000
square feet of built space to the campus: Philip and Betsey Caldwell
Hall, Walter K. Chess Center, Otto and Fran Walter Hall, Ruth and John
Neptune Art Center; and the under-construction Louis O. Palmer Gallery.