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DRAFT FOR DISCUSSION. AUBURN UNIVERSITY STRATEGIC PLANNING SITUATION ASSESSMENT SUPPLEMENT May 2007. Messina & Graham. Introduction.

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auburn university strategic planning situation assessment supplement may 2007

DRAFT FOR DISCUSSION

AUBURN UNIVERSITYSTRATEGIC PLANNINGSITUATION ASSESSMENTSUPPLEMENTMay 2007

Messina & Graham

slide2

Introduction

  • This draft document is a supplement to the Situation Assessment produced in October 2006. It contains two chapters that extend the information base for strategic planning.
  • The first chapter, Overview of Graduate Education,profiles graduate programs at Auburn and illustrates the interrelationships among graduate studies, undergraduate instruction, and the funded-research enterprise.
  • The second chapter, Faculty Profile, summarizes basic information about Auburn’s approximately 1,200 faculty members.
  • Both these information sets also contain comparisons of Auburn data with corresponding measures at selected peer institutions.
overview of graduate education

DRAFT FOR DISCUSSION

OVERVIEW OF GRADUATE EDUCATION

May 2007

Messina & Graham

George Flowers, Interim Dean, Graduate School

Joe Pittman, Interim Dean, Graduate School

Sharon Gaber, Associate Provost, Academic Administration

slide4

Contents

  • Graduate Students at Auburn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
  • Situation Assessment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
  • Assessment of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities,
  • and Threats (“SWOT” Assessment) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30
  • Strategic Implications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
  • Appendices
    • Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at
  • University of Alabama than at Auburn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
    • Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at Auburn
    • than at Clemson . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
    • Glossary of Selected Terms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

Note: This profile does not encompass the First Professional programs in Pharmacy, Audiology, Speech Pathology, and Veterinary Medicine that are administered by their respective colleges, not by the Graduate School

2

slide5

Roles of Graduate Students at Auburn

  • Contribute to undergraduate instruction and research by undergraduates

INSTRUCTION

  • Essential participants in performing faculty-led
  • research, both funded and unfunded, which has significant economic impact in the state

RESEARCH

  • Significant contributors to faculty-led
  • scholarship and service in community settings

OUTREACH

AND EXTENSION

  • Important in attracting and retaining quality faculty

FACULTY

  • Upon graduation, key factor in building the reputation of the University

REPUTATION

3

slide6

Masters and Ph.D. degrees predominate

Distribution of Auburn Graduate Students by Degree Offering – Fall 2006

Chart 1

100% = 3,245 Students

Other*

5.9%

Masters 54.9%

Ph.D.

34.7%

Ed.D.

3.8%

Ed.S.

0.7%

4

* Includes graduate provisional and graduate non-degree students, most of whom will soon enroll in a graduate degree program

slide7

The vocationally-oriented Education and Business Masters programs account for 38 percent of AU’s graduate students

Distribution of Auburn Graduate Students by School – Fall 2006

Chart 2

100% = 3,245 Students

Human Sciences 3%

Architecture 3%

Agriculture 7%

Education 22%

Other 7%

Science/Math 9%

Business 16%

Liberal Arts 13%

Engineering 20%

5

slide8

Almost two-thirds of Auburn graduate students come from out-of-state

Enrollment of Graduate Students by Source 2006

Chart 3

100% = 3,245 Students

Foreign 21.9%

Alabama

39.2%

Other U.S.

38.9%

6

slide9

Almost one-half of Auburn graduate students are graduate assistants

Distribution of Graduate Students by Graduate Assistant Role – Fall 2005

Chart 4

100% = 3,169 Students

Combined Assistantships

2.5%

Graduate Research Assistants 22.8%

Students Without Assistantships

51.2%

Graduate Teaching Assistants

23.5%

7

slide10

Contributions to Mission Elements

by Graduate Students at Auburn

  • INSTRUCTION
  • •High-quality graduate students are models of academic seriousness for undergraduates
  • •Graduate teaching assistants interact in small groups and one-on-one with undergraduates
  • •Graduate assistants act as mentors for undergraduate students doing project and research activities

8

slide11

Contributions to Mission Elements

by Graduate Students at Auburn

  • RESEARCH
  • •Graduate students are essential for serious research programs
  • •Graduate student involvement in research provides an apprenticeship for future researchers
  • •Graduate students conduct experimental and field research; do data analysis, modeling and simulation; and contribute through team activity to the training of new graduate students
  • OUTREACH AND EXTENSION
  • •Graduate students are on the front lines of delivery and evaluation through “service learning,” practicum experiences, internships, and/or assistantships
  • •Graduate students amplify the faculty’s outreach effort, with accompanying economic benefits

9

slide12

Science and Engineering Graduate Students

INSTRUCTION

RESEARCH

EXAMPLE

  • Teach primarily labs and recitation sections
  • Tutoring and homework grading, project supervision and mentoring
  • Role models for undergraduate students
  • Guide undergraduate research
  • Perform funded and unfunded research
  • Co-author publications
  • Prepare and give presentations at conferences and technical meetings
  • 16 graduate students in Dr. David Bevly’s GPS and Vehicle Dynamics Laboratory (GAVLAB)
  • Work on navigation and control of autonomous ground vehicles
  • $500K in annual research, funded by government and industry

Undergraduate student and Graduate Student working together on DARPA Grand Challenge vehicle

Doctoral student Rob Daily working in GAVLAB

10

slide13

Agriculture, Forestry, and Human Sciences Students

INSTRUCTION (class and community)

RESEARCH (basic and applied)

EXAMPLE

  • Assist faculty in classes
  • Teach classes with faculty supervision
  • Help develop and implement extension curricula and materials
  • Participate in faculty-led community outreach activities
  • Help supervise interns and service learning students
  • Help design experimental and field research
  • Help guide student research
  • Evaluate outreach and extension efforts
  • Co-author reports and publications
  • 10 graduate students on Dr. Francesca Adler-Baeder’s Community Capacity Projects
  • Work with community groups across Alabama to enhance and evaluate educational services in support of marriage and families
  • $1.3M in annual outreach service, research, and evaluation funded by Federal and State government (through the Healthy Marriage Initiative)

Drs. Adler-Baeder and Ketring (at ends) with four graduate students and Governor Riley at the Governor’s Mansion for the “Marriage Celebration” event on 2/18/07

11

slide14

Department of History

INSTRUCTION

RESEARCH

EXAMPLE

  • Assist faculty in core curriculum classes: World History and Technology & Civilization
  • Teach independent classes
  • Assist faculty in outreach, most notably Alabama Review and Encyclopedia of Alabama
  • Conduct original research
  • Prepare and give presentations at professional conferences
  • Publish single-author articles under the guidance of faculty
  • Upon graduation, publish dissertations as books
  • Assist in major projects, such as documentary history of NASA or Slavery Interpretation Project at Westville, GA
  • 7 students enrolled in Dr. Joseph Turrini’s Fundamentals and Theory of Archives Class
  • 5 archival internships across the state during the last calendar year
  • Under Dr. Jeff Jakeman’s direction, program graduates include Director of the Clinton Presidential Library, Assistant Director of Alabama State Archives, and archivists at institutions throughout the United States
  • Department has placed 15 of 15 graduates in last three years in professional positions

Doctoral student

Mark Wilson

presents his research at a statewide conference

12

slide15

Research is the primary assistantship role in agriculture and forestry, while core-curriculum teaching is emphasized in science/math and liberal arts

Percentage of Graduate Students With a Research or Teaching Assistantship 2005-06

Chart 5

Emphasis on Research

Students Involved in Teaching and Research

Emphasis on Teaching Core

% Research

Assistants

% Teaching

Assistants

Agriculture

Forestry

Human Sciences

Engineering

Science/ Math

Liberal Arts

13

slide16

Situation Assessment

  • AU’s graduate programs are small relative to SREB peers. Chart 6. Some schools award more graduate degrees because they have large Social Work, Communications, and Public Health programs that AU does not offer. Charts 7 and 8. The somewhat erratic growth trend in graduate degrees awarded may reflect the priorities of different Presidents and the impact of strategy reviews. Chart 9. In general, however, AU’s graduate program growth lags behind both Alabama and SREB schools overall. Chart 10
  • AU faculty have fewer graduate students and graduate assistants to leverage their instruction and research than do faculty at peer institutions. Charts 11 and 12
  • AU is significantly less selective in its admissions than are many leading competitors, and GPA, GRE, and GMAT scores of entering graduate students are somewhat lower than at many peer institutions.Charts 13 and 14
  • AU does have some stand-out programs according to external rankings. Chart 15. Nevertheless, many AU programs – such as Mathematics and Engineering – are in the middle of the pack relative to regional competitors. Chart 16. Others – such as Education and Business – rank lower relative to regional competitors. Chart 17
  • The financial package offered to graduate assistants is uncompetitive compared to regional peers. Charts 18, 19, and 20

14

slide17

AU’s graduate programs are small relative to SREB peers

Degrees Awarded (Per 100 Bachelors Degrees) 2002-05

Chart 6

Masters Degrees

Doctoral Degrees

55.3

54.5

43

11.9

39.2

34.6

29.9

27.5

7.9

7.9

25.2

7.1

6.9

24.6

6.4

22.6

6.3

5.6

19.9

4.2

4.0

3.8

USC

GA

Tech

UTN

UAL

UFL

VA

Tech

Clemson

UGA

UMS

Texas

A&M

AU

GA

Tech

UFL

USC

UGA

UTN

VA

Tech

Texas

A&M

UAL

AU

Clemson

UMS

Rank of 24 SREB Schools:

1

2

7

8

10

16

18

19

21

23

24

1

5

7

9

10

12

13

15

21

22

23

Source: SREB Fact Book

15

slide18

University of South Carolina’s higher number of Masters degrees are mostly in the Communications, Social Work, Interdepartmental, and Public Health programs

Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at University of South Carolina than at Auburn – 2005-06

Chart 7

24

Negative numbers where Auburn’s program has more graduate students than University of South Carolina’s

58

88

-51

737

-45

124

-40

164

200

215

Comm.

& Inf.

Sciences

Social

Work

Inter-

depart.

Public

Health

Bus.

Arts &

Sciences

Other

Arch.

Agric.

Eng.

Net

Difference

Source: University of South Carolina Fact Book

16

slide19

University of Tennessee’s Masters degree awards exceed AU’s across the board, but Education and Social Work account for half of the difference*

Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at University of Tennessee than at Auburn – 2004-05

Chart 8

83

776

56

-40

58

96

98

196

229

Ed., Health

& Human Dev.

Social

Work

Comm.

& Info.

Studies

Health

Science

Business

Arts &

Sciences

Other

Arch.

Net

Difference

* Please see similar charts for Alabama and Clemson in the Appendix

17

Source: University of Tennessee Fact Book

slide20

1200

1100

1000

900

800

700

600

500

400

300

200

100

0

1980-81

1985-86

1990-91

1995-96

1970-71

1975-76

2000-01

2005-06

The somewhat erratic growth trend in graduate degrees awarded may reflect the priorities of different Presidents and the impact of strategy reviews

Graduate Degrees Awarded Annually Since 1970

Chart 9

F

u

n

d

e

r

b

u

r

k

21st Century Commission

R

i

c

h

a

r

d

s

o

n

Martin

Philpott

Walker

Muse

Visions of Excellence

Bailey Report*

* President Bailey 1983 to 1984

18

slide21

However, AU’s graduate program growth has not kept pace with the state’s or with SREB schools’ growth

Percentage Increase in Graduate Degrees Conferred

Between 1987-88 and 2003-04

Chart 10

100%

80.5%

69.2%

65.7%

55.1%

42.5%

Masters/Doctorate

Alabama

Masters/Doctorate

SREB States

Masters/Doctorate

Auburn

Source: SREB Fact Book

19

slide22

AU has the fewest graduate students per tenured and tenure-track faculty member of its peers, and of all SREB schools

Number of Graduate Students Per Full-Time Tenured and

Tenure-Track Faculty Member (Students/Faculty) – Fall 2005

Chart 11

6.8

6.4

5.1

4.6

4.4

4.3

4.2

4.1

4.0

3.3

2.8

USC

GA

Tech

Texas A&M

UAL

UFL

VA Tech

UTN

UGA

UMS

Clemson

AU

20

slide23

AU faculty have fewer graduate assistants to leverage their instruction and research than do faculty at peer institutions

Number of Graduate Assistants per Full-Time Tenured and

Tenure-Track Faculty Member (Assistants/Faculty) – Fall 2005

Chart 12

4.5

2.0

1.9

1.9

1.9

1.7

1.7

1.7

1.5

1.2

1.2

GA

Tech

Clemson

VA Tech

UGA

UMS

UTN

UAL

UFL

AU

Texas A&M

USC

21

slide24

AU is significantly less selective in its admissions than are many leading competitors

Average Graduate Student Acceptance Rates for the

Colleges of Engineering, Education, and Business* – 2006 Admissions

Chart 13

71.3%

56.7%

56.8%

56.2%

52.7%

45.0%

44.0%

42.1%

41.8%

UGA

Texas A&M

VA

Tech

UFL

UAL

Clemson

AU

USC

UTN

* Only includes Universities with all three programs. Average acceptance rates are weighted by number of new students enrolled

22

Source: USNWR

slide25

GPA, GRE, and GMAT scores of entering graduate students are somewhat lower than at many peer institutions

Colleges of Engineering, Education and Business Graduate Students Average Undergraduate GPA and GRE/GMAT Scores* – 2006 Admissions

Chart 14

GPA

GRE Quantitative/GMATScores

3.81

715

3.70

697

3.58

655

3.38

3.31

3.28

604

603

577

541

UGA

UFL

VA

Tech

AU

UTN

UAL

UFL

Texas

A&M

Clemson

AU

UTN

UGA

UAL

* Only includes Universities with all three programs. Average scores are weighted by number of new students enrolled

23

Source: USNWR

slide26

AU does have some stand-out programs according to external rankings

Recent External National Rankings of Selected Auburn Graduate Programs

Chart 15

PROGRAM

RANKING*

Fisheries 1

Industrial Design 3

Physicians Executive MBA Program 4

Landscape Architecture 14

Industrial and Systems Engineering 27

Health and Human Performance 28

MBA Program (Public) 39

Civil Engineering 49

Electrical Engineering 49

Chemical Engineering 52

Computer Engineering 53

Mechanical Engineering 65

* Rankings include public and private programs/schools unless otherwise indicated

Source: American Academy of Kinesiology & Physical Education 2007; Auburn Office of Communications & Marketing; DesignIntelligence 2005 & 2006; Forbes 2005; Modern Physician 2006;U.S. Dept. of Agriculture 2006; USNWR 2004, 2006 & 2007

24

slide27

Nevertheless, many AU programs – such as Mathematics and Engineering – are in the middle of the pack relative to regional competitors

AU Competitor Rankings in USNWR* – Public and Private Programs/Schools

Chart 16

BEST MATHEMATICS PROGRAMS (Ph.D.)

BEST ENGINEERING SCHOOLS

2006

2006 2007

1 MIT

2 Harvard

35 Georgia Tech

47 Univ. of Georgia

47 Texas A&M

56 Univ. of Florida

56 Virginia Tech

67 Florida State

73 Univ. of Tennessee

80 Auburn

89 Clemson

89 Univ. of S. Carolina

94 Univ. of Alabama

NR Univ. of Mississippi

1 1 MIT

2 2 Stanford

4 4 Georgia Tech

14 14 Texas A&M

26 26 Univ. of Florida

30 33 Virginia Tech

71 66 Univ. of Tennessee

74 74 Auburn

68 77 Clemson

NR NR Florida State

NR NR Univ. of Alabama

NR NR Univ. of S. Carolina

* Rankings based on varying combinations of (1) opinions about program quality gathered from deans

and recruiters and (2) quantitative measures of faculty resources, research activity, and student caliber 

25

slide28

AU’s Education and Business programs rank lower relative to regional competitors

AU Competitor Rankings in USNWR – Public and Private Programs/Schools

Chart 17

BEST EDUCATION PROGRAMS

BEST BUSINESS SCHOOLS

2006 2007

2006 2007

2 1 Teachers College, Columbia Univ.

1 3 Harvard

21 26 Univ. of Georgia

45 34 Texas A&M

35 41 Univ. of Tennessee

35 44 Univ. of Florida

53 53 Florida State

70 NR Auburn

74 NR Clemson

NR NR Univ. of Alabama

NR NR Univ. of S. Carolina

1 1 Harvard

2 2 Stanford

34 25 Georgia Tech

31 29 Texas A&M

41 37 Univ. of Florida

46 46 Univ. of Georgia

59 55 Univ. of S. Carolina

66 NR Univ. of Tennessee

69 NR Auburn

73 NR University of Alabama

NR NR Clemson

NR NR Florida State

* Rankings based on varying combinations of (1) opinions about program quality gathered from deans

and recruiters and (2) quantitative measures of faculty resources, research activity, and student caliber 

26

slide29

AU’s stipends for graduate teaching assistants are not competitive with those at regional peers in Mechanical Engineering . . .

GTA Stipends in Mechanical Engineering 2006

Chart 18

$22,800

$15,600

$15,300

$13,200

$12,000

$9,500

$8,040

$7,932

Georgia Tech

Univ. of KY

Univ. of MS

Univ. of TN

Texas Tech

Univ. of Florida

Clemson

Auburn

Source: American Society for Engineering Education University Profile

27

slide30

. . . or in Human Development/Family Studies

GTA Stipends in Human Development and Family Studies 2006

Chart 19

$18,660

$17,328

$17,220

$16,656

$15,996

$15,192

$9,804

Florida State

Univ. of GA

Virginia Tech

Arizona State

Texas Tech

Univ. of NC

Auburn

Source: Survey by Virginia Tech

28

slide31

The benefit package offered to AU graduate assistants is also below that of many peer institutions

Health Insurance Benefit for Graduate Students 2006

Chart 20

Source: Survey by AU Graduate Student Council

29

slide32

Assessment of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities,

and Threats (“SWOT” Assessment)

Auburn University Graduate Programs

STRENGTHS

• AU offers a wide array of graduate programs, both vocational and academic

• AU’s graduate programs in Fisheries, Industrial Design, and Landscape Architecture, as well as the Physicians Executive MBA program, rank very highly at a national level

• Several other AU graduate programs – including Engineering, Business, and Kinesiology – rank well among public universities

30

slide33

WEAKNESSES

• The size of the graduate programs at Auburn does not reflect a deliberate strategic decision by the University. Overall, based on comparisons with other institutions, the number of graduate students may be too small to effectively support Auburn’s research and instruction missions

• The average caliber of students in AU’s graduate programs is lower than that at many national institutions and regional peers

• The three large programs that US News & World Report ranks do not fare as well as those at leading national institutions and regional competitors

31

slide34

OPPORTUNITIES

• Grow overall graduate program size by selectively supporting programs that have most potential to contribute to the research mission and to undergraduate instruction

• Rationalize programs by rigorously assessing the viability, competitiveness, growth prospects, and graduate student quality of each

•Build on strengths to attract additional research-oriented faculty who tend to recruit high-

quality graduate students

• Fund competitive graduate assistant stipends and benefit packages while setting a high standard for students to receive financial support

32

slide35

THREATS

• A lack of strategic direction for – and resources behind – the graduate programs may inhibit AU from reaching its potential in both research and undergraduate education

•Uncompetitive stipends and benefits may lead to erosion of the size and quality of the graduate student body in the research-oriented programs, and may demoralize faculty and undermine the University’s research mission

33

slide36

Strategic Implications

  • Overall, graduate education at Auburn University is not in a strong position
    • Many of AU’s graduate programs are not highly selective, lack clear distinctiveness, and the faculty are under-leveraged with regard to graduate student support
    • The small size of AU’s graduate-education enterprise relative to SREB peers increases the challenge of attracting and retaining exceptional research-oriented faculty
    • Slower relative growth in Masters and Doctorate degrees conferred over the past decade and a half (compared to SREB overall and within the State of Alabama) means that AU is losing market share in graduate education among SREB states and, to an even greater extent, in Alabama
  • AU needs to determine the appropriate overall size of its graduate-education enterprise to most effectively support its mission elements of research, instruction, and outreach / extension
  • AU’s graduate programs should be reviewed by discipline and rigorously assessed along significant dimensions – including viability, competitiveness, growth prospects, and graduate student quality

34

slide37

Strategic Implications (continued)

  • Should Auburn decide to continue to increase the size of its research enterprise, then the University may well need to expand the number of graduate assistantships to better leverage faculty in both research and teaching
  • Financial packages for graduate assistants need to be upgraded to achieve parity with competitors and thus help maintain the quality of graduate applicants
  • AU needs to review the organization structure of the graduate school and its Dean, and the graduate school’s relationship with the Office of the Provost and with the Vice President for Research, to help ensure strategic alignment

35

slide38

Appendices

  • Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at University of Alabama than at Auburn
  • Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at Auburn than at Clemson
  • Glossary of Selected Terms

36

slide39

University of Alabama’s higher number of Masters degrees are mostly in the Social Work, Communication & Information Science, and Human & Environment Science programs

Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at University of Alabama than at Auburn – 2005-06

Chart 21

43

91

-38

-51

111

266

-45

156

Social

Work*

Comm.

& Inf.

Science*

Human

& Environ.

Science

Arts &

Sciences

Eng.

Arch.**

Agric.**

Net

Difference

* AU does not have College

** U of A does not have College

37

Source: University of Alabama Fact Book

slide40

While Clemson and Auburn award about the same number of Masters degrees, Clemson awards many more Engineering and Forestry Degrees – Auburn many more in Business and Liberal Arts

Sources of Greater Number of Masters Degrees at Auburn than at Clemson – 2005-06

Chart 22

19

15

29

55

88

-107

-46

34

-19

Business

Liberal

Arts

Agric.

Education

Other

Eng. &

Science

Forestry

Arch.

Net

Difference

Source: Clemson University Fact Book

38

slide41

Glossary of Selected Terms

  • Graduate assistant (GA) – a graduate student who is awarded a fellowship that provides financial aid in exchange for providing teaching, research, and/or outreach-related duties
  • • Graduate research assistant (GRA) – a graduate assistant who works on
  • academic research projects with one or more full faculty members
  • • Graduate teaching assistant (GTA) – a graduate assistant who works under the supervision of a professor to teach labs, recitation sessions, and
  • introductory classes
  • Recitation session – a class held to expand upon and discuss a lecture given by a senior faculty member

39