A Message from the President
January 28, 2011 - Low-Completer Program Report and Review
Yesterday the Louisiana Board of Regents, in response to current and projected budget challenges facing higher education, adopted a new academic program review process. The first phase of this process is a review of all low-completer academic programs in Louisiana.
Southeastern has a total of 19 academic programs (one graduate and 18 undergraduate) that appear on this new low-completer program list. You can review this list, as well as the criteria used by BoR to identify programs at the following link: BoR-1.27.11. Preliminary press reports indicated Southeastern had 22 programs on the list, but the accurate number is 19.
Several institutions with fewer low-completer programs on the list than Southeastern had previously discontinued multiple low-completer programs. Likewise, Southeastern recently discontinued baccalaureate programs in horticulture, French and French education - all programs that would have been on this new low-completer list had they not already been eliminated.
Please keep in mind, the 19 programs identified by the BoR in the current process will not automatically be eliminated. However, we have been informed that we must present a vigorous rationale to the BoR defending the viability of these programs, whether as stand alone programs, or in combination/merger with others. Clearly, we expect some of these programs will be eliminated as a result of this process.
As you may recall, we had previously conducted our own institutional review of academic programs based on prioritization criteria and data (2010 Academic Program Review). The criteria the BoR will consider in this current low-completer review are a subset of the same criteria used in our internal review of academic programs.
Dr. Bourg, our Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, will resume the academic review process we began last spring, working with our academic deans and department heads to collect additional information relevant to the 19 low-completer programs as well as other programs that had been deemed potentially at risk and in need of further review. Our Program Review Task Force will then update the status of these programs relative to the program prioritization criteria. This will allow us to respond to the BoR low-completer program review as well as make informed recommendations about potential program eliminations.
Please keep in mind that the current BoR low-completer list does not take into account program cost. As a result, it is possible that relatively high-cost programs that do not appear on the BoR low-completer list could ultimately be recommended for elimination while relatively low-cost programs that do appear on the BoR list could be preserved.
We will continue to keep the campus informed as this process unfolds.