Staff Resources

SACS Institutional Effectiveness


Southern Methodist University is accredited as a Doctoral I educational institution by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Every ten years, SMU undergoes a self-regulatory review process to maintain accreditation status. The review process, conducted in the spring of 2011, involves the submission of a Self-Study Report and a visit by a team of peer evaluators from other universities to ensure that SMU satisfies criteria for re-accreditation. The Self-Study Report consists of six sections: Principles and Philosophy of Accreditation: Institutional Purpose: Institutional Effectiveness: Educational Programs: Educational Support Services: and Administrative Processes. Institutional Effectiveness is an assessment of the planning and evaluation procedures within an institution. All units on the SMU campus (academic and support) have developed plans that include means for assessing the effectiveness of programs and services. The results of the assessment are used for program improvements, planning and decision making. The four stages of Institutional Effectiveness are:

  • Establish a clearly defined purpose that supports SMU's mission.
  • Formulate goals that support that purpose.
  • Develop and implement procedures to evaluate and assess the extent to which these goals are being achieved.
  • Use of the results of the evaluations and assessments to improve services and programs.

SACS considers the Institutional Effectiveness (IE) Program one of the most important components of the re-accreditation review. SACS Institutional Effectiveness guidelines state that plans should be implemented every year, integrated in the planning processes of the institution at all levels and widely disseminated among constituents. The SACS review committee visited the SMU campus for an On-site visit conducted April 5-7, 2011. SMU's accreditation was reaffirmed on December 5, 2011 at the annual meeting of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Institutional Effectiveness Program projects for Central University Libraries:

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