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EDHE 6740: Planning and Analytical Systems in Higher Education

Spring 2009

Thursdays 5:30-8:20pm

  • Location:  Mean Green Village B
  • Instructor:     Associate Professor Marc Cutright, Ed.D.
  • Office:        138 MGVB
  • Phone:        940.369.7875
  • e-mail:        Marc.Cutright@unt.edu
  • Office hours:    Thursdays 1-4, and by appointment, including evenings and weekends if mutually convenient


Benchmarking Project: Embedded Librarianship


Class Meetings

  • January 22
    • NO CLASS. Dr. Cutright presenting at National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students Annual Conference
  • January 29
    • Distribution of syllabus and related materials.  Discussion of class projects and requirements. Lecture on benchmarking in higher education.
  • February 5
    • NO CLASS. Dr. Cutright presenting at SERA.  Make appointments for individual consultations on benchmarking projects in the days surrounding. 

  • February 12
    • Discussion of Keller, Academic Strategy.  Reflection paper #1 due day before.
  • February 19

    • Discussion of Keller, Higher Education and the New Society. Reflection paper #2 due day before.

  • February 26

    • Morrill, Strategic Leadership, Parts I and II (No reflection paper), Guest Speaker: Dr. Jan Hillman

  • March 5
    • Morrill, Strategic Leadership, Parts III and IV. Reflection paper #3 due day  before.  Can be on Morrill in its entirety.

  • March 12

  • March 19

    • NO CLASS. Spring break.

  • March 26

    • MacTaggart, Academic Turnarounds.  Reflection paper #5 due day before

  • April 2

    • Bryson, ½, via class presentations of chapters

    • Annie and I will be GONE at TLA Annual in Houston

  • April 9

    • Bryson, ½, via class presentations of chapters.

  • April 16

    • Benchmarking presentations, 1/3 of class

  • April 23

    • Benchmarking presentations, 1/3 of class

  • April  30

    • Benchmarking presentations, 1/3 of class

  • May 7

    • Wrap up, if necessary; good date to present to external client




Objectives include:

1.    Broad familiarity with planning in higher education

2.    Examination of the dynamic environments in which planning operates

3.    Execution of a practical benchmarking project

4.    Understanding of the Institutional Research office and other functions supportive of institutional planning


Required course texts

  •     Keller, G. (1983). Academic Strategy: The Management Revolution in American Higher Education. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  •     Keller, G. (2008). Higher Education and the New Society. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  •     MacTaggart, T. (Ed.) (2007). Academic Turnarounds: Restoring Vitality to Challenged American Colleges and Universities. Westport, CT: ACE/Praeger.
  •     Morrill, R.L. (2007). Strategic Leadership: Integrating Strategy and Leadership in Colleges and Universities. Westport, CT: ACE/Praeger.


Recommended text

    Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 5th edition


Other readings:

    Provided by instructor, via advanced handout, advanced electronic access, or same-class distribution and discussion.



Class Assignments and Weights in Final Evaluation

Note 1:  Readings are to be completed before the class at question.

Note 2:  Listed activities will be supplemented by instructor presentation/lecture, occasional guest presentations, and light supplemental reading.


Individual class presentations of one chapter each from Bryson, J.M. (2004, 3rd Ed.). Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.  (20%)

--  Chapter 10: Key Steps in Using the Strategy Cycle --


    Each student will be responsible for the presentation of one chapter from this book. The instructor will present the preliminary chapters of the book as a classroom/presentation model, and other chapters in the book if there are an insufficient number of students enrolled to cover the important chapters of the book. The text for each individual will be provided by the instructor.


    If you wish, you may distribute a handout.  The handout should clearly identify the book and the chapters at hand.  These handouts should not exceed three double-sided pages (six pages of text over three physical pages). If the format is PowerPoint, which is not required but often used, the format should be the “Handouts” one, with three slides (with note spaces) per page, or a total of no more than 18 slides.  


More notes on this assignment: most students do too much, not too little.  Effectively present the essential information--very little text on PowerPoint slides.


Benchmarking project (45%)

    Each student will conduct a formal benchmarking project, e.g. formal examination of a topic across several institutional circumstances, with the intention of improving processes or outcomes. Ideally, this will be a “real world” project, with a “client” who commissions the study and is interested in the results.  In most cases, the student will present or deliver the findings twice: once in class, and once for the client. 


The last class has been “reserved” for allowance for this external presentation.    Present FIRST to class for formative evaluation, to improve the presentation/project before it is formally presented to the client.


Reflection papers (25%)

    Five reflection papers will be due during the course. Each student will hand in a two-page (three pages maximum), double-line-spaced reflection paper based on one or more of the week’s readings/chapters. This reflection paper can take a variety of forms, e.g. contrasting one author’s perspective to another’s, identification of common themes, relating one or more of the readings to one’s personal experience in higher education, and so on. Memorization of pieces and key points is not important. The ability to critically consider and discuss the ideas presented in them is important.


NOTE: The reflection paper for each class is due not at the top of that class, but the WEDNESDAY EVENING BEFORE, BY 8PM, BY BLACKBOARD OR E-MAIL. This will allow me to mark your papers and return them at class, and more importantly, use them as the basis of that Thursday’s discussion of the readings.  


Additional references are not necessary for these assignments. However, if other resources are cited, they should be included in a reference list in APA format.


Be sure to put your name, the course title, the date, and the reflection paper number (of 5) at the top of your first page.  PAGINATE anything you send in.  Name your file LASTNAME Reflection # before submitting it to Vista.  (Compose your own title for the paper.)


The exercises are “graded” as check +, check, or check - . The first two earn you all 5 points for the exercise.  The last might, but I might ask you to do over; I will certainly do so if you hand in two such papers in a row.


Class attendance and participation (10%)

    Students are expected to have read all of the week’s readings before coming to class, and to be prepared to discuss them critically.


The class is essentially seminar in nature. Therefore, not only your own learning, but that of your classmates, is dependent upon your preparation, attendance, and participation. Failure to address these responsibilities will impact final evaluations.


Professional responsibilities and personal circumstances can make absence unavoidable on occasion. In such cases, you are expected to notify the instructor in advance whenever possible, and to make arrangements for completion of due work and possibly a compensatory assignment.



    The class will utilize the Blackboard electronic class system, assuming it is regularly functional.  Please familiarize yourself with it by the second class session.  Also, read your EAGLEMAIL account regularly, or have it forwarded to an account that you do read regularly; I will be depending on this for many class item distributions.  


Academic honesty

    Substantiated plagiarism—the use of another’s words and work without attribution and represented as one’s own—will result in a failing grade for the class and appropriate referral to institutional review and action. Other instances of academic dishonesty—for example, handing in work that has previously been submitted in another class—can similarly result in failure and referral for further review.


Instructor office hours/availability

    Anticipated, formal office hours are 1-4 Thursdays.  However, duties may require my absence at that time.  I am happy to make appointments at your convenience, including weekend and evening hours if necessary. I check my e-mail frequently and this tends to be the most reliable way to reach me.  


Individual absences

    I’ve learned that trying to decide between “legitimate” and other absences is a fool’s errand.  The bottom line is that if you miss the class, you miss the content, and we are jointly responsible for a learning experience for you that justifies graduate course credit.

    If you miss a class, make arrangements to get notes or a briefing from another student.  You will also be responsible for an additional, compensatory assignment. Excessive absences from class could adversely affect your final grade.  



    “The Department of Counseling and Higher Education is committed to full academic access for all qualified students, including those with disabilities. In keeping with this commitment and in order to facilitate equality of educational access, faculty members in the Department will make reasonable accommodations for qualified students with a disability, such as appropriate adjustments to the classroom environment and the teaching, testing, or learning methodologies when doing so does not fundamentally alter the course.

     “If you have a disability, it is your responsibility to obtain verifying information from the Office of Disability Accommodation (ODA) and to inform me of your need for an accommodation. Requests for accommodation must be given to me no later than the first week of classes for students registered with the ODA as of the beginning of the current semester.  If you register with the ODA after the first week of classes, your accommodation requests will be considered after this deadline.

“Grades assigned before an accommodation is provided will not be changed. Information about how to obtain academic accommodations can be found in UNT Policy 18.1.14, at www.unt.edu/oda, and by visiting the ODA in Room 321 of the University Union. You also may call the ODA at 940.565.4323.”


Inclement weather and university closure policy

    The class will follow the university’s policy for closure. In the event of a class session cancellation, students are expected to stay on pace with assignments.


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