Blue Ribbon Commission Concludes with Suggested Performance Measures

Posted: May 17, 2000 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

The final report of the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Higher Education concludes with a series of recommended performance measures designed to help state leaders assess each college and university’s overall effectiveness. Each measure can be used system-wide or can be reshaped to better accommodate individual institutions.



Under the category of quality, the recommended measures include the following:


  • Graduation and retention rates for four-year institutions based on actual versus predicted rates, historical trends, and/or peer analyses.


  • National standardized test scores compared with peer institutions, predicted/projected rates, and historical trends.


  • Transfer-completion/progression rates for community colleges and for institutions with nontraditional populations.


  • Specific measures for competencies such as technological, writing, and speaking skills.


  • Post-graduate experience evaluations, including a review of trends over time and comparison with peers and national benchmarks.



Under the category of efficiency, the recommended measures include the following:


  • Research productivity as viewed by National Science Foundation and National Research Council ratings.


  • Audits of assessment, program review, and post-tenure review processes by external auditors.


  • National rankings of institutions and program-specific rankings.


  • Percent of alumni who contribute.


  • Crime statistics, including comparisons over time and to other institutions in similar environments.


  • Expenditure of funds on instruction and academic programs.


  • Attainment of national accreditation.


  • Faculty members’ productivity in terms of the number of credit hours they teach and the amount of research funding they generate.



The report, available on the SCHEV website, was produced by a committee including President Alan Merten; Sidney Dewberry, a member of George Mason’s Board of Visitors; representatives of many of the commonwealth’s other colleges and universities; members of the General Assembly; and business leaders.

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