What does COPRA say about Standard 4?
October 2016, Graduation and Persistence Rates: To enhance the quality and comparability of one of the most critical outcomes of public affairs programs – graduation rates – the Commission will amend student completion data collection to specific collection benchmarks of 2 years, 3 years, and 4 years. To ensure the comprehensive context of students continuing to graduation outside of four years, programs will also be asked to provide a persistence rate2 . These changes will be effective for self-study reports submitted by the 2017-2018 cohort in August 2017. COPRA expects this change will more closely align with how institutions currently collect completion rates.
October 2013, Diversity: COPRA continues to evaluate diversity against the context of the program itself, allowing programs based in different geographic locales and regions to be sensitive to local diversity issues and concerns. Programs are expected to provide program- and mission-specific diversity plans that detail strategies to promote faculty, student, and curricular diversity and foster an overall climate of inclusiveness.
Programs in recent cohorts have had difficulty articulating to COPRA how the program works to “promote diversity and climate of inclusiveness” without a strategic diversity plan, developed with respect to a program’s unique mission and environment. The Commission seeks more substantial evidence regarding programmatic efforts to promote diversity and a climate of inclusiveness, specifically demonstrable evidence of good practice, a framework for evaluating diversity efforts, and the connection to the program’s mission and objectives. The requirement of a written diversity plan will be reflected in forthcoming changes to the Self-Study Instructions and expected of the 2014-15 Cohort.
June 2013, Diversity: COPRA expects that student and faculty diversity will be reflected in each aspect of a school’s programs. COPRA evaluates diversity against the context of the program itself, allowing programs based in different geographic locales and regions to be sensitive to local diversity issues and concerns. Programs are expected to provide program- and mission-specific diversity plans that detail strategies to promote faculty, student, and curricular diversity and foster an overall climate of inclusiveness.
June 2011, Student retention. For both the pre and post-2009 accreditation standards, COPRA continues its focus on ensuring the connection between mission and goals, admissions, student tracking, retention, graduation, and student services. Tracking student success and retention is critical to ensuring consistency between the mission, admissions practices, student services, and graduation placement. Programs that have difficulty tracking students tend to struggle to meet accreditation requirements in many of these areas.
Click to read more COPRA Policy Statements.