For Immediate Release 28 June 2001
Dakota State University Receives Accreditation Renewal
Regents Presented with Program Review Reports
SIOUX FALLS-At its regular business meeting held today at the South Dakota School for the Deaf, the Board of Regents was presented with the accreditation report for Dakota State University from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association. The Regents also heard program review reports from Dakota State University (DSU) and Northern State University (NSU).
Following a complete review of DSU that included aspects of educational programs to student services, DSU was given approval for full ten-year accreditation renewal from the North Central Association.
The North Central Association report cited DSU's emphasis on technology and its role in the entire institutional program. Aspects of technology have been integrated into all courses and degree programs. The success of the DSU graduates in securing positions demonstrates the relevance of the education students receive to the needs of the workplace. Students and employers expressed great satisfaction with the academic programs at DSU.
The report also commends DSU's focus on faculty teaching with the tools of technology and its commitment to faculty development. "The Regents feel that faculty development, especially in learning new technology, is crucial for preparing students for the workplace. Along with the outstanding efforts of DSU in offering technology training to faculty, Governor Janklow's Faculty Awards for Teaching with Technology awards aided many faculty in developing technology for their courses," said Regents Executive Director Robert T. Tad Perry.
A full ten-year renewal is the highest accreditation awarded by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.
The Regents also heard program review reports from DSU and NSU. "To ensure quality programs the Board of Regents requires that all university academic programs be evaluated on a regular cycle. Each program must be reviewed at least every five years. The review process includes an internal study and an external reviewer. Upon receiving the external reviewer's report, program directors must respond to the external reviewer's observations and recommendations by stating what the appropriate steps would be to meet those recommendations," said Senior Administrator Dr. Lesta Turchen.
Programs reviewed were DSU's Business program and NSU's Biology, Community Services, Environmental Biology, Medical Technology, and Sociology programs.
"The Regents require the program review process to monitor quality in the programs at the universities. We are pleased when a program is commended for its performance, but if areas for improvement are found the board and the university need to set to work to make the necessary improvements," said Perry.
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