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Biochemistry Quality Improvement Plan

Department/Program: Biochemistry
Review Date: October 24-26, 2017
Last Updated: December 18, 2017

At the time of the Program Review Biology and Biochemistry were one department. So the reviewers review them both yet there are recommendations that are uniquely to Biochemistry.


*Visiting Team Recommendations **Update on Actions Taken/ Current Status Completed Date
1. Preparation and success of international students is far and away our biggest concern. 
2. Math and science placement exams need to be developed, along with preparatory/development courses in order to address the needs of a growing number of incoming students. 
3. Consider providing a faculty FTE line to teach preparatory developmental science courses and science education. 
4. Advising, especially giving students accurate guidance on courses, programs, and career preparation, needs to be addressed 
5. New physical facilities, especially for research and lab spaces are imperative. 
6. Emphasis should be given to encouraging more science education majors. 
7. Questions of animal use in research and labs need to be addressed. 
8. Improvement should be sought in terms of workload for faculty, including (but by no means limited to) those in leadership positions. 
9. Strategic planning – especially at the Department level – needs to be intentional. 
10. Development of a strategic plan with measurable metrics to address assessment needs, taking advantage of the expertise and offered assistance of the Academic Vice President, should be pursued 
11. Further consideration should be given of the four-year graduation imperative. 
12. There should be an examination of possible improvement to the writing component of the Biochemistry 490 series. 
13. Development of a seminar course to address the Biochemistry PLO 4 needs to be undertaken. 
14. There should be an effort to determine why the downward trend in Biochemistry enrollments and how to address it. 
15. Evaluation of the possible justification for a new faculty FTE in biology and biochemistry would be helpful. 
16. Additional and complimentary methods for evaluating teaching besides just SRIs should be sought 
17. Sharing of data between Admissions and Institutional Research would be very helpful. 
18. Staffing of the Department of Academic Success should be reevaluated to provide continuity over time 
19. Stability in academic calendars would improve student success. 
20. Possible improvements to the Modular curriculum Gen Ed program might be considered, as student views of this system are notably negative. 
21. Introduction of some flexibility into the four-year graduation requirement should be evaluated 
22. Faculty’s pedagogy, in particular “older” faculty, must be current 
23. Improved faculty advising, particularly for freshman students, would be very helpful. 
24. Identify potential internships, graduate programs, and career opportunities in target areas, and develop a means to communicate these opportunities to students.