Feedback and Response

3.3.1.4  The institution identifies expected outcomes, assesses the extent to
which it achieves these outcomes, and provides evidence of
improvement based on analysis of the results in research within its mission, if appropriate.  (Institutional effectiveness - research within its mission, if appropriate)


Findings of the Off-Site Reaffirmation Committee

The University of New Orleans identifies research as central to its mission and describes itself as a “student-centered, urban research institution.” One of the university’s 2020 strategic goals relates specifically to research. The university has also identified three strategies for accomplishing the research component of its strategic plan. The institution identified both research units, including centers and institutes, and research expectations for faculty as central to accomplishing the university’s research outcomes and implementing its identified strategies. At the research unit-level, some of the associated objectives lack specificity. Several of the objectives provided are stated as brief, incomplete phrases (e.g. DOTD employee training). Additionally, some measures and targets also lack specificity, using terms such as “refine” and “maintain.” The university provides a sample of “close the loop” examples to document improvements based on analysis of the assessment results. While UNO does describe the sample, it does not specify how the units or the examples from the identified units were selected. This information is needed to determine whether the sample is representative of the units and the objectives within the units. For example, objectives associated with research represent both learning outcomes (e.g. students will demonstrate the ability to organize and manage survey research process) and non-learning outcomes (e.g. implement 3 new collaborations); however, none of the objectives classified as learning objectives were included in the “closing the loop” examples provided by the university.


Response and Actions Taken

Based on the preliminary findings from the SACSCOC Off Site Review Committee received in November 2014, professional development materials were developed for all units engaging in institutional effectiveness and assessment efforts.  The primary focus of these materials was to make explicit the expectations for quality outcomes, measures, targets, findings and closing the loop action plans.  All faculty and staff were required to attend professional development meetings in December 2014 and January 2015.  Following are the materials presented and disseminated at the meetings with center and institute directors and staff.

IE Professional Development Presentation – Centers and Institutes

IE Professional Development Handout – Centers and Institutes

WEAVE Instructions

In order to allow for changes to be made based on the professional development activities, the 2014-15 institutional effectiveness cycle was separate into two cycles in WEAVE:  Fall 2014 and Spring 2015.  All centers and institutes were charged with reviewing their institutional effectiveness plans and making changes based on the material presented.  These changes were to be made in the Spring 2015 cycle. 

The majority of Centers and Institutes complete assessment analysis and action plans on an annual basis aligned with the fiscal year.  Tables 1a through 1c provide selected examples of changes made in center and institute plans for those centers who have acted the professional development recently delivered.

Table 1a.  Revised Plan

Merritt C. Becker Jr. UNO Transportation Institute 

Cycle

Outcomes

Measures

Targets

Fall 2014

To develop regionally and nationally competitive research program in the areas of freight/ports, transit-oriented development, evacuation planning, and sustainable, resilient and equitable transportation systems. Nurture and develop stronger partnerships with funding agencies, such as the USDOT, DHS, La DOTD/LTRC, RPC, and other universities, such as LSU to attract federal UTC funding. Actively participate in the Consortium of UTCs and with partners in Arkansas, Louisiana, Maryland and Texas. Identify new partners across the USA. Develop common research proposals. Apply for funding.

Tally proposals and funding applications.

UNOTI will submit at least $3 million in external funding applications per year.

Spring 2015

Develop sustainable funding streams to support research in passenger and freight transportation systems as well as funding for professional outreach and educational activities. To ensure that UNOTI submits enough proposals to support our research in both passenger and freight transportation systems and to support professional outreach activities and educational activities. Because of the nature of grant funding, we must apply for more than our annual costs.

Tally funding proposals by the following categories: freight research, passenger research, professional outreach and educational activities

UNOTI will submit at least $900,000 for freight research activities, $1.5 million for passenger research activities, $300,000 for professional outreach activities, and $300,000 for educational activities per year. Our goal is to ensure 50% of total funding in passenger systems, 30% of total funding in freight systems, 10% in professional outreach and 10% in educational activities.

 

Table 1b.  Revised Plan

Midlo Center

Cycle

Outcomes

Measures

Targets

Fall 2014

Demonstrate an understanding of research methods and archival research through participation in externally funded research projects

Project rated by faculty supervising grant projects

100% will score at “acceptable” or above

Spring 2015

Students will demonstrate an understanding of research methods and archival research through participation in externally funded research projects. Project leaders will train students in the research skills necessary to successfully complete each specific project, for example taking a collection from the cultivation of metadata through the creation of interface to alternative uses of the data in exhibitions and public programs.

Students working on research projects will be assessed by project directors based on tool consisting of 5 elements created by project directors adapted for the specific project.

 

85% of student interns will score 3 or higher on all five elements.

 

Table 1c.  Revised Plan

Survey Research Center

Cycle

Outcomes

Measures

Targets

Fall 2014

Conduct a survey research project annually

None

None

Spring 2015

Conduct and disseminate a Quality of Life research project for Orleans and Jefferson Parishes

Analyze dissemination of report to media (how many outlets and what type), City Hall Quality of Life Director and Deputy Mayor feedback

Complete survey by Spring 2015, complete additional survey in Fall 2015. Report will be disseminated to 5 national media outlets, 3 local television stations, 2 newspapers, and radio consortium

 

Table 2 provides the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 institutional effectiveness plans for all centers and institutes.   

 

Table 2.  IE Plans for all Centers and Institutes – Fall 2014 and Spring 2015

College

Research Unit

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COBA

Division of Business and Economic Research

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COBA

Institute for Economic Development and Real Estate Research

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COBA

Hospitality Research Center 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COE

Energy Conversion & Conservation Center 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COE

Maritime Environmental Resources and Information Center 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

Center Austria 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

Center for Hazards Assessment Response and Technology 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

Merritt C. Becker Jr. UNO Transportation Institute 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

Midlo Center

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

New Orleans Jazz Institute 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COLA

Survey Research Center 

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COS

Advanced Materials Research Institute  

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

COS

Greater New Orleans Center for Information Assurance  

Unavailable

Spring 2015 Plan

COS

Pontchartrain Institute for Environmental Science  

Fall 2014 Plan

Spring 2015 Plan

 

Closing the Loop

Centers and institutes report findings and close the loop on an annual basis.  However, directors and staff were encouraged to report findings and create action plans if possible for Fall 2014.  Table 3 presents Fall 2014 findings and action plans, where available.

According to the Assessment Data by Section Report for Fall 2014, three of the center and institutes identify student learning outcomes in addition to their non-learning, operational outcomes. 

Table 3.  Center and Institute Findings and Action Plans – Fall 2014

College

Research Unit

Fall 2014 Findings and Action Plans

COBA

Division of Business and Economic Research

None

COBA

Institute for Economic Development and Real Estate Research

None

COBA

Hospitality Research Center 

None

COE

Energy Conversion & Conservation Center 

Detailed Assessment Report

COE

Maritime Environmental Resources and Information Center 

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

Center Austria 

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

Center for Hazards Assessment Response and Technology 

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

Merritt C. Becker Jr. UNO Transportation Institute 

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

Midlo Center

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

New Orleans Jazz Institute 

Detailed Assessment Report

COLA

Survey Research Center 

None

COS

Advanced Materials Research Institute  

None

COS

Greater New Orleans Center for Information Assurance  

None

COS

Pontchartrain Institute for Environmental Science  

None

 

Other Research and Scholarly Activities

The University of New Orleans recently implemented a web-based software that serves as a university-wide tool for collecting and reporting faculty data, including faculty credentials and scholarly activities.  It is designed to reduce faculty time responding to requests for information by functioning as a single, convenient place for faculty members to archive achievements.  The University purchased and customized the software in Fall 2013 with the overarching goal to manage data in one place and minimize redundancy.  The software is being implemented in phases, beginning with full-time faculty in Spring 2014 for the first three of the following eight tasks.

  • Faculty credentials
  • Activity reporting/workload
  • Curriculum vita
  • Annual evaluations
  • Promotion and tenure
  • Sabbatical requests
  • Professional development
  • Accreditation compliance

The following five college reports have been generated from the software and document the research activities of all full time faculty by department for Fall 2013 through Fall 2014.  Administrators, including deans and chairs, have access to this information and it is included in annual department reports.  Individual performance in workload and research activities is assessed annually as a basis for reflection and improvement. These data are used as part of the institutional effectiveness process at the department level.  Departments will complete the analysis of assessment data and action planning (closing the loop) at the end of the spring semester.

 

College of Business Administration – Faculty Activity Report

College of Education and Human Development – Faculty Activity Report

College of Engineering – Faculty Activity Report

College of Liberal Arts – Faculty Activity Report

College of Sciences – Faculty Activity Report

 

Supporting Documents

Document Description
Document IconFR_ADS_CentersInstitutes_Fall_2014ADS_CentersInstitutes_Fall_2014
Document IconFR_Center Austria_Findings_Fall 2014Center Austria_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_CHART_Findings_Fall 2014CHART_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_AMRI_Fall 2014DAR_AMRI_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_AMRI_Spring 2015DAR_AMRI_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_Austria_Fall 2014DAR_Austria_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_Austria_Spring 2015DAR_Austria_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_CHART_Fall 2014DAR_CHART_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_CHART_Spring 2015DAR_CHART_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_DBER_Fall 2014DAR_DBER_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_DBER_Spring 2015DAR_DBER_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_ECCC_Fall 2014DAR_ECCC_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_ECCC_Spring 2015DAR_ECCC_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_GNOCIA_Spring 2015DAR_GNOCIA_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_HRC_Fall 2014DAR_HRC_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_HRC_Spring 2015DAR_HRC_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_IEDRER_Fall 2014DAR_IEDRER_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_IEDRER_Spring 2015DAR_IEDRER_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_MERIC_Fall 2014DAR_MERIC_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_MERIC_Spring 2015DAR_MERIC_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_Midlo_Fall 2014DAR_Midlo_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_Midlo_Spring 2015DAR_Midlo_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_NOJI_Fall 2014DAR_NOJI_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_NOJI_Spring 2015DAR_NOJI_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_PIES_Fall 2014DAR_PIES_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_PIES_Spring 2015DAR_PIES_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_SRC_Fall 2014DAR_SRC_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_SRC_Spring 2015DAR_SRC_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_DAR_UNOTI_Fall 2014DAR_UNOTI_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_DAR_UNOTI_Spring 2015DAR_UNOTI_Spring 2015
Document IconFR_ECCC_Findings_Fall 2014ECCC_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_FAR_COBAFAR_COBA
Document IconFR_FAR_COEFAR_COE
Document IconFR_FAR_COEHDFAR_COEHD
Document IconFR_FAR_COLAFAR_COLA
Document IconFR_FAR_COSFAR_COS
Document IconFR_IE_Prof_Develop_CentersInstitutes_Jan_2015_pptIE_Prof_Develop_CentersInstitutes_Jan_2015_ppt
Document IconFR_IE_Prof_Develop_Handout_CentersInstitutes_Jan_2015IE_Prof_Develop_Handout_CentersInstitutes_Jan_2015
Document IconFR_MERIC_Findings_Fall 2014MERIC_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_Midlo Center_Findings_Fall 2014Midlo Center_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_NOJI_Findings_Fall 2014NOJI_Findings_Fall 2014
Document IconFR_UNOTI_Findings_Fall 2014 copyUNOTI_Findings_Fall 2014 copy
Document IconFR_WEAVE_Instructions_Dec_2014WEAVE_Instructions_Dec_2014