San Diego State University College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts

Strategic Plan
The College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts

At the heart of any leading institution is the fundamental and profound interaction between its faculty who are continually engaged in disciplinary inquiry, their students, whose life goals are advanced as a result of a university experience, and the communities impacted by the academically informed work of faculty and students.

The College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts (PSFA) strategic plan is in alignment with the SDSU Strategic Document “Building Upon Excellence” and focuses upon the unique characteristics of PSFA’s diverse academic units and their respective missions.

The College seeks to build upon its current strengths, develop new areas of excellence and continue its tradition of linking academic programs--through the research and creative endeavors of its faculty and students--with the broader community.

  • We intend to be a college comprised of faculty, staff and students that values, supports, and rewards a diverse range of scholarly and artistic human expressions
  • We believe our students are best served by academic programs that provide ample opportunities for international experience, professional development, and to engage in entrepreneurial/innovative thinking
  • We seek opportunities to connect the research and creative work of the faculty with our community in way that fosters impactful and meaningful experiences and relationships

Three frames outline the PSFA plan:

    FRAME 1 - Advancing Student success
    FRAME 2 - Advancing Faculty research and creative endeavors
    FRAME 3 - Advancing Community impact and engagement

Each goal is followed by a list of strategies that can be used as appropriate to each school. The goals and strategies will necessarily change as the plan is reviewed and revised. The strategies should be viewed as a variety of means for accomplishing the goals; therefore some strategies will be more relevant to some schools than others.

FRAME 1 - Advancing Student Success

1.1 Pedagogical support and innovation: Enhancing faculty effectiveness

GOAL: Create a culture of continuous improvement in teaching effectiveness

Strategies for creating a culture of continuous improvement in teaching effectiveness include:

  1. Engage faculty at all ranks in activities that will strengthen pedagogy (e.g. CTL workshops, pedagogy workshops at conferences)
  2. Identify sessions that will be of most use to PSFA faculty and offer CTL workshops
  3. Offer mentoring, special workshops in each school
  4. Encourage active assessment of student learning outcomes between sections of same course
  5. Establish criteria for teaching effectiveness of lecturers in each school
  6. Each school’s faculty establish grading expectations and standards, considering disciplinary areas and course types
  7. Address unsatisfactory teaching without ambiguity in review letters across all levels of review
  8. Hire, recognize, and retain faculty who model effective teaching and professional growth/currency
  9. During student orientation meetings, explain and highlight the culture of instructional excellence
  10. Promote development of teaching portfolios among the faculty
1.2 Innovative and high impact pedagogy models

GOAL: Be recognized as a leader in high impact and innovative pedagogical models

Strategies for leading in high impact and innovative pedagogical models include:

  1. Incentivize innovative and interdisciplinary collaboration tied to strategic objectives
  2. Consider developing capstone courses/experiences and digital portfolios in those disciplines where they are appropriate and fill current curricular gaps
  3. Charge College AP&P and RTP committees to review College policy file regarding pedagogical innovation as well as interdisciplinary collaboration
  4. Utilize our resources, identify specialized faculty who can contribute to college discourse
  5. Stacked course offerings; common schedule & time slots, educate faculty about stacked courses/practices
  6. Define what we mean by experiential, project-based, service learning courses
  7. Build and strengthen professional community partnerships
  8. Make curricular linkages to community as “lab”
  9. Enhance active learning opportunities
  10. Increase opportunities for students to engage in experiential and high impact learning throughout the curriculum
1.3 Advising and graduation rates

GOAL: Be the campus model for advancing overall and differential graduation rates

Strategies for advancing overall and differential graduation rates include:

  1. Provide support for academic advisors through the use of assigned time, peer-to-peer advising, GTA or similar
  2. All PSFA Academic advisors meet regularly (once per semester)
  3. Track and manage students not making progress toward graduation; get these students to campus offices that will help them devise a degree completion path
  4. Make available information regarding retention and graduation rates on an annual basis
  5. Achieve consistency in advising effectiveness/practices across the College
  6. Create online advising structures and information
  7. Increase international minor and international participation through advising
  8. Develop advising training and a checklist in each school
  9. Initiate campus policy conversation (Assistant and Associate Deans)
  10. Encourage faculty to gain advising certification to supplement current advising personnel
  11. Differentiate between academic advising and career mentoring
  12. Effectively manage student enrollment (waitlists, meeting demand)
1.4 Engaging students in research and creative endeavors

GOAL: Establish a culture in which students understand the importance of pursuing research/ creative endeavors

Strategies for establishing a culture in which students understand the importance of pursuing research/creative endeavors include:

  1. Place the highest priority on activities that involve faculty engaging students in their research or creative endeavors
  2. Increase student participation in the SSF process and research symposium
  3. Raise awareness among faculty of the mini-grants available through the Research Division
  4. Identify faculty who are open to engaging in collaborative research/creative models with students
  5. Encourage students to reach out to faculty about their research or creative interests
  6. Identify school actions that will promote opportunities
  7. Utilize research methods courses as a base of student interest
  8. Hold brain-storming sessions with faculty about how to involve students in their research or creative endeavors
  9. Have successful grant recipients (e.g. SSF, faculty min-grants, research symposium participants) provide information through special events where they can share their experiences
  10. Promote faculty mentorship of students to seek opportunities
  11. Identify funding that can be used to support student research/creative development
  12. Improve notification about opportunities for students to seek fellowships, awards, conference participation/attendance and funding
1.5 International experiences

GOAL: At least one-third of all graduating seniors in PSFA will have an approved international experience related to their academic program/career goals

Strategies for achieving this goal include:

  1. In consultation with the academic units, the college will establish target goals in each school for the participation of domestic students in international experiences.
  2. Provide meaningful international experience opportunities (impactful, immersive, measurable objectives to assess)
  3. Provide regular data using common data points for each school (using primary and secondary majors)
  4. Present information each fall to faculty in each school, identifying opportunities, processes etc.
  5. Develop a set of faculty resources (materials, people, mentors, best practices) to be available to all PSFA faculty
  6. All schools will cover international experiences during orientation and advising
  7. Increase enrollment in the international studies minor
  8. Identify how to incrementally increase international experience offerings and cross-market these offerings
  9. Pre-approve programs that transfer courses into a major, focusing on deeper relationships with quality programs
  10. Provide access to courses that will meet a degree requirement
  11. Focus on freshman --- continually tell the story
1.6 Entrepreneurial experiences

GOAL: Foster entrepreneurial thinking among our students and faculty

Strategies for fostering entrepreneurial thinking among faculty and students include:

  1. Establish a definition for the College that clarifies concepts of entrepreneurial thinking and entrepreneurial practices
  2. Each school will examine opportunities in entrepreneurial skills development appropriate to their field
  3. Establish strong ties with the Lavin and Zahn centers
  4. Promote the campus-wide entrepreneurship minor from the College of Business Administration
  5. Identify PSFA courses that can be added to the campus entrepreneurship minor
  6. Consider folding the entrepreneurship minor into a degree emphasis
  7. Identify and promote correlation between entrepreneurial development within program and course level learning outcomes
  8. Incorporate portfolio preparation within classes (e.g. internship)
  9. Establish a working group to outline goals for arts entrepreneurship
1.7 Internships, mentoring and professional development

GOAL: Be a campus leader in providing access to academically related internships or professional development to all of our students

Strategies for leading in providing student access to internships or professional development include:

  1. Establish internship coordinators in units across the college
  2. Establish college-level communication between and among internship coordinators through regular meetings
  3. Clearly define the responsibilities and expected outcomes for internship coordinators
  4. Develop a best practices internship manual
  5. Identify and raise funds for internship stipends
  6. Set targets of graduating students in each school who will have a quality, academically related internship (as defined by Federal labor law)
  7. Develop professional growth/career competitive grants for students
  8. Require students to apply for internship scholarships where such funding is available
  9. Create measures for job placement, tracking, workforce development
  10. Establish consistent practices for quantity of hours, intern academic mentorship, and advising across the College
  11. Have conversation with enrollment services about direct admits to the schools, pre-major issue
  12. Review the processes involved in getting funds to students and financial need
  13. Invite career services to present about campus practices and opportunities

FRAME 2 - Advancing Faculty Achievement in Research and Creative Endeavors

GOAL: Each school in PSFA will establish interdisciplinary research/creative collaboration, within or across the college that will be eligible for consideration as an area of excellence with a view to achieving external funding or donor support

GOAL: Arts Alive SDSU will serve as a catalyst to identify and advance collaborations between the arts and other research areas

GOAL: The College will promote a culture of ongoing professional growth among its faculty, across all ranks

Strategies for accomplishing these goals include:

  1. RTP process must validate interdisciplinary professional growth, being careful to delineate as to quality/prestige in the profession
  2. Encourage involvement across campus to attain Area of Excellence
  3. Create structures around which interaction can occur; outreach to faculty who are known to be interested in inter/cross disciplinary work
  4. Each academic year have a PSFA interdisciplinary theme (e.g. 15-16 collaborative efforts surrounding 2016 election cycle)
  5. Link relevant research and creative endeavors to community needs as a way to increase external support
  6. Connect community-based research/creative work with donors
  7. Encourage the pursuit of grants and external support for relevant research/creative endeavors
  8. Invite funding agencies and foundation representatives to speak with faculty
  9. Develop focused messages and case statements for external support
  10. Cultivate community-based support that leads to meaningful research/creative opportunities for faculty
  11. Encourage inclusion of grant-writing (as appropriate) in faculty hiring job descriptions
  12. Encourage Schools to align the securing of grants and external support with relevant outcomes in research/creative excellence
  13. Provide effective mentorship at school and college level for probationary faculty
  14. Promote continual professional growth across the ranks

FRAME 3 - Community engagement and impact

GOAL: Be recognized by our communities as having significant impact in addressing issues important to the region

Strategies for accomplishing this goal include:

  1. Community engagement will match our intellectual capital
  2. Clearly articulate what level of community engagement aligns with quality measures/achievement in professional growth for faculty
  3. Clearly articulate what level of community engagement aligns with quality exemplars in teaching
  4. Differentiate what type of community engagement is best attributed to service
  5. Create a college statement defining academically informed, research-based professional growth community engagement activities as an important college value
  6. Devise a rubric that can be used in assessing measures of quality for community engagement and impact, a taxonomy that describes what the community does in response to our work
  7. Develop consistent messaging (“brand”) that captures PSFA’s community engagement and impact; e.g. research-based community impact
  8. Utilize existing frameworks (UGP, Assigned Time, PLF etc.) as primary method to identify faculty whose research or creative endeavors can be promoted and highlighted in messaging, engaging donors, external support etc. (modify forms as appropriate to enable information to be shared from the faculty)
  9. Identify the indicators for engagement; e.g. impacting behaviors, policies, quality of life, and/or helping to solve problems of the region
  10. Engage communities of supporters, emeriti faculty and staff to advance College goals
  11. Our communities will recognize or have been impacted through their connection to our academic programs