Deans release prioritization recommendations

Click for full resolution. Infographic by Ashley Spencer | The Appalachian

Stephanie Sansoucy

Click for full resolution. Infographic by Ashley Spencer  |  The Appalachian
The Office of Academic Affairs at Appalachian State University released deans’ rankings of programs Nov. 11 as part of the program prioritization process.

The Office of Academic Affairs will take the list and use it to make recommendations to the chancellor, said Lori Gonzalez, executive vice chancellor of academic affairs.

The deans ranked each program based on what they considered “most core” and “least core,” according to the list released on

The programs that ranked highest among deans were English, elementary education and exercise science. English received seven votes from deans for being “most core,” while elementary education and exercise science received six votes.

The programs that ranked the lowest were Appalachian studies, women’s studies and health education for secondary education. They each received seven votes for being “least core.”

Each college was given a list of guidelines for program review in October 2012, but each college was able to rank programs based on their own rubric.

The College of Arts and Sciences, for example, had a list of both quantitative and qualitative factors to rank programs at Appalachian, said Neva Specht, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“There was a pretty substantial rubric developed with the department chairs and some faculty that looked at various metrics,” Specht said.

Specht said she thought the process was stressful.

“It was as open as it could be,” Specht said. “I think we got a lot of data from our faculty. This process has been very stressful because it’s not just a program, it’s students and faculty. It’s not just a name on a page.”

The College of Fine and Applied Arts is currently working on program prioritization and strategic plan discussions at the same time. The strategic plan discussions are looking at changing the organization of the college, said Glenda Treadaway, dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts.

“This, while separate from program prioritization, will greatly impact suggestions that I make to Academic Affairs concerning the future of the programs in the college,” Treadaway said.

The final report, which will be used to determine which programs may be cut or consolidated, will be completed by the chancellor Dec. 2, according to

Story: CHELSEY FISHER, Senior News Reporter 
Infographic by Ashley Spencer  |  The Appalachian