Middle States Assessment Presented
Published: Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Updated: Sunday, April 8, 2012 00:04
An evaluation team assessing the university for reaccreditation praised Georgetown’s innovations but cited room for improvement in the core curriculum Wednesday.
The team, which is evaluating the university as part of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education reaccreditation process, presented their findings in Copley Formal Lounge. The group was on campus interviewing students, faculty and staff and reviewing the university’s self-study from Sunday to Wednesday.
The presentation marked the end of a four day visit from the team, which is comprised of officials from peer institutions such as Syracuse and Villanova Universities.
The university began preparations for its reaccreditation in 2009 by implementing a self-study, which focused on four of the 14 Middle States reaccreditation standards: institutional assessment, institutional planning and resource allocation, general education and assessment of student learning. The results were published in early February.
Swarthmore College President Rebecca Chopp, head of the evaluation team, said that she was impressed by both the self-study and the student-led 2012 Student Life Report. She singled out the Berkeley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs as well as the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law as successes.
The team believes that Georgetown has remained competitive despite the economic crisis.
“Georgetown has exhibited discipline under challenging financial conditions,” Chopp said. “It has outperformed relative to its resources.”
Chopp also discussed potential areas of improvement, including an examination of Georgetown’s hands-on educational offerings. She noted that the university is lagging behind its peers in such opportunities
“Georgetown should seek to engage students in high impact studies,” she said, listing first year seminars and community-based learning as examples.
Chopp also said that according to the evaluation team’s study, students desire a clearer structure and more guidance in their education.
“Given calls from the campus community, the general requirement working group should continue to work to improve the core curriculum,” she said.
The recommendations made by the evaluation team will be reviewed by the Middle States Commission, after which the university will be able to provide its own input. A final vote by the commission on Georgetown’s reaccreditation, a process that is completed every 10 years, will take place this summer.