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King University News :: Quality Enhancement Plan Represents Best Practices for King

Many people hear the phrase, Quality Enhancement Plan, and automatically think assessment. For Matt Roberts, associate dean of teaching and educational development for King College, those three words represent best practices for the King community.

In the Principles of Accreditation: Foundations for Quality Enhancement, by the Commission on Colleges - Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, The Commission on Colleges expects institutions to dedicate themselves to enhancing the quality of their programs and services within the context of their missions, resources, and capacities, and to create an environment in which teaching, public service, research, and learning occur. The concept of quality enhancement is at the heart of the Commission's philosophy of accreditation...

We need to be able to show how our QEP flows from our mission statement, said Roberts. It is a logical connection to say that if you are going to build meaningful lives of achievement and have cultural transformation in Christ, you must have the necessary communication skills to articulate the change you want to execute or develop. You must be able to communicate effectively to create action in the world.

Another way of thinking of QEP is as our signature curriculum improvement project on campus, continued Roberts. In 2007, faculty determined the QEP focus that would have the broadest impact was improvement of written and oral communication skills. This goal has resonated throughout the faculty, staff, and students.

QEP has positively influenced programs throughout campus. Currently, there are 14 unique projects across campus including the creation of a sound lab for theatre students; the development of a blog to accompany a campus read for a Buechner lecturer, engaging faculty, staff, and students; addition of peer instructors, students leaders chosen from the Launch committee, to assist a faculty partner in teaching the First Year Experience course; and development of student writing skills in a second language; along with many other projects.

Chris Slaughter, associate professor of theatre for King, commented, This has changed the culture among some of the theatre students. They now have an understanding of what QEP is and it's importance.

It is all about continuous improvement and quality enhancement, said Roberts. The key is curricular integration. The hope is the QEP projects will become a best practice for faculty, thereby further increasing the quality of education at King.