Date of Graduation

5-2016

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Public Policy (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Political Science

Advisor

Michael T. Miller

Committee Member

Brinck Kerr

Second Committee Member

Ketevan Mamiseishvili

Abstract

The purpose for conducting the study was to form an understanding of the online program assessment and assessment processes in higher education, and how program review processes were adopted and implemented through institutional policies in regard to industry quality assurance standards. The study looked at institutions classified as very high, high, or research universities by the Carnegie Classifications, and which offered online masters programs focused on preparing students for positions in educational administration or leadership roles. The study used an electronic survey and content analysis through institutional policy and quality assurance documents to develop a recommendation for institutional level quality procedure of online programs to assure reviews are performed. The electronic survey was distributed to 194 institutions and results were analyzed using descriptive statistics, cross-tabulation with chi-squared analysis, and ANOVAs. Research results showed that program reviews were integrated into institutional policy and required for program operation, but the results also showed that institutions and programs needed to review the policies to examine if the reviews truly reflected the needs of the programs and accreditors, or if they needed to be edited for elimination of repetition. The practices and responses illustrated the necessity for institutions and programs to find common ground for gathering the information needed on program performance and student learning outcomes for program reviews and reports.

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