Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services, Revised and Updated: Reallocating Resources to AchieveStrategic Balance
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Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services


Increasing economic concerns make the new edition of this best-selling classic an invaluable resource for those who want and need to implement a proven step-by-step approach to reallocating resources in tough times. Thoroughly revised and updated, Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services includes new recommendations from the field, communication strategies for more successful campus implementation, a new section on the sources of hidden costs, and a Prioritization Process and Implementation workbook designed to help administrators avoid costly mistakes. This book includes access to additional content online, including models for prioritization from a variety of campuses. Based on the author's extensive consulting experience, this necessary and timely resource offers the best advice for addressing the current economic concerns affecting most colleges and universities.

Praise for Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services

"For more than a decade, higher education leaders have turned to Dickeson's practical guide to academic program assessment. These newly expanded approaches are just in time for today's competitive environment."
—SUZANNE SHIPLEY, president, Shepherd University

"Dickeson provides a compelling rationale for program prioritization as well as a practical planning structure that promotes alignment between programs, resources, and university mission. Presidents and provosts can use his approach to frame campus discussions around the future of the institution and away from legacy programs whose time has passed."
—KYLE R. CARTER, provost and senior vice chancellor, Western Carolina University

"Dickeson's approach ensures that critical decisions regarding academic programs and resource allocation are aligned with strategic goals and institutional mission. As one of the early adopters of the process that he proposes, I am convinced that it is a powerful and practical tool for any college or university committed to remaining focused, resilient, vital, and relevant in a dynamic and increasingly challenging environment."
—DAVID MAXWELL, president, Drake University


ROBERT C. DICKESON is a higher education consultant, president emeritus of the University of Northern Colorado, and former senior vice president of Lumina Foundation for Education.


Preface to the Revised Edition ix

Foreword to the First Edition xiii
Stanley O. Ikenberry

Preface to the First Edition xvii

About the Author xxv

1. Recognizing the Need for Reform 1

2. Identifying Responsible Leadership 25

3. Reaffirming Institutional Mission 37

4. DefiningWhat Constitutes a Program 53

5. Selecting Appropriate Criteria 65

6. Measuring, Analyzing, Prioritizing 89

7. Anticipating Process Issues 105

8. Implementing Program Decisions 123

9. Achieving Strategic Balance 139

Resource A: Outsourcing Practices in Higher Education 151

Resource B: Sample Process Agenda Adopted by a Land-Grant University 155

Resource C: Criteria for Measuring Administrative Programs 161

Resource D: Case Studies: Excerpts from Implementation Plans 165

Resource E: Sources of Hidden Costs 183

Resource F: Model Communication Plan 187

Resource G: Prioritization Process and Implementation 191

References 213

Index 221