The Office of Institutional Effectiveness Services

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness provides a variety of services that contribute to the improvement and promotion of the University. For all services, contact Institutional Effectiveness at ie@usm.edu

Institution-wide Accreditation Activities

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness’s primary mission is to ensure that The University of Southern Mississippi is continually monitoring its compliance with the Principles of Accreditation of the Southern Association of Colleges and School’s Commission on Colleges.  By maintaining an updated inventory of documents and archives of information that support compliance, Institutional Effectiveness will be able to provide the evidence needed for the next SACS reaffirmation process. We work with faculty, staff, and administrators across campus to record evidence of meeting the Principles.

Program and Unit Assessment Support

Institutional Effectiveness works with departments and units on an individual basis to define assessment activities. We can help to define student learning outcomes and/or administrative objectives that are in line with the mission of the unit, and can assist in identifying appropriate measurements and targets for these. Working with faculty and staff who contribute to the unit’s goals, IE can help develop academic and administrative assessment plans that reveal the accomplishments of your program.

Program Review

Administration Academic and Graduate Councils have established policies that every academic program must conduct a program review every seven years.  Institutional Effectiveness administers this process.  We orient the program faculty to the Southern Miss process, provide the required documents, help the departments to gather and analyze data if they request this help, and answer all questions about the process.  We will also help in any way needed during the evaluation by an external team of reviewers.  We then work with the Academic and Graduate Councils to execute the review of the program and provide feedback to the departments, and to record the outcomes for the Provost and the Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning. Finally, IE assists Academic and Graduate Councils to review periodically the program review process and make changes when necessary.

Program-Specific Accreditation Assistance

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness is available to assist academic departments and administrative units in external accreditation reviews.Although we are not experts about every accrediting agency in the nation, we can work with program faculty to understand the accrediting agency standards, involve the right people, create a plan of action, review documents for accuracy and thoroughness, and participate in site visits.  And, because we are the repository for the institution’s accreditation responses, we can sometimes provide prepared responses about institution-wide topics like governance. Institutional

Improvement Projects

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness has unique exposure to many university documents and processes. As a result, opportunities for institutional improvement can be identified.  The most current enhancement project is the Undergraduate Bulletin Revision, which involves standardized presentation of program plans and revision of text to ensure consistent and accurate information.  The intent of these projects is to improve facets of Southern Miss’s institutional effectiveness.

Undergraduate Bulletin Revision

Bulletin Degree Plan Template

Bulletin Revision Consistency Guidelines