The Role of Advisory Groups in the Development of the UW Flexible Option
In addition to participating program faculty and staff from the UW System institutions who have stepped forward to pioneer the development of the UW System’s Flexible Option, three system-wide advisory groups have been convened to determine key components and principles guiding the development of UW Flexible Option programs:
- A Faculty/Instructional Academic Staff advisory group is developing principles for quality, competencies, assessments, and levels of mastery, as well as identifying an ongoing oversight role for faculty as UW Flexible Option programs are developed.
- An Administrative Advisory group is working through infrastructure issues and assisting in the development of a business model focused on tuition pricing and revenue sharing.
- An Academic and Student Support group is assisting in the development of the operational mechanisms and support needed to allow students to enroll and progress in UW Flexible Option programs.
UW-Extension will partner with each UW Flexible Option program to provide operational and administrative support.
The UW Flexible Option Faculty and Instructional Academic Staff (IAS) Advisory Group, composed of faculty and IAS from all 14 of the UW System’s degree-granting institutions, has been convened to make recommendations in the following academic areas:
- A consensus understanding of the UW Flexible Option, for dissemination among faculty and staff at UW System institutions.
- A set of core values and principles covering, among other things, the role faculty will play in the development and implementation of UW Flexible Option programs, adherence to shared governance, adherence to accreditation standards and requirements, assurance of quality and rigor in UW Flexible Option curricula and assessments, competency mastery, and a strong focus on student learning and success.
- An ongoing oversight role for faculty and IAS from across the UW System to monitor adherence to core values and principles as UW Flexible Option programs are developed and offered to students.
The Faculty/IAS Advisory Group began meeting in late October 2012, and will complete its work in late January or early February 2013. A successor group will be formed to provide ongoing faculty and IAS oversight of UW Flexible Option programs as they are developed and implemented.
The UW Flexible Administrative Advisory Group, composed of chancellors, provosts, and staff from the UW System Administration offices of the Budget and Academic and Student Affairs, and several representatives from key student support areas, has been convened to make recommendations in the following business and operational areas (among others):
- A business model developed for UW Flexible Option programs that will include recommendations on tuition pricing, the investment required to support development, and operational costs of participating programs.
- The relationship between UW Extended Campus and the UW institutions offering UW Flexible Option programs, including suggestions for operational roles.
- Review of market research conducted by UW Extended Campus to ascertain potential student interest and demand in Cohort I UW Flexible Option program areas.
- An ongoing oversight role for high-level administrators from across the UW System.
The Administrative Advisory Group began meeting in November 2012, and will continue to meet through March 2013. A successor group will be formed to provide ongoing budgetary and administrative oversight of UW Flexible Option programs as they are developed and implemented.
The Operational Advisory Group for UW Flexible Academic and Student Support, composed of admissions and financial aid directors, registrars, bursars, transfer coordinators, advisers and others from across UW institutions, has been convened to make recommendations in the following areas (among others):
- Admissions: Where/how/by whom admissions criteria will be set to promote both access and student success.
- Financial aid: How students will receive financial aid, in accordance with Department of Education regulations.
- How will students become enrolled?
- Grading and transcripting: How competencies and assessments will be graded and transcripted, and how UW Flexible Option programs will be designated on student transcripts.
- How will transferring work, both in and out?
- Student engagement and success: What additional support will be needed to lead to student success.
- The relationship between UW-Extension and the UW institutions offering UW Flexible Option programs, including suggestions for which operational roles should be housed where, and with particular attention paid to ensuring both efficiency and effectiveness.
The Operational Advisory Group will begin meeting in January 2013, and continue to meet through Spring 2013, as needed. A successor group may be formed to provide ongoing operational oversight of UW Flexible Option programs as they are developed and offered.