Introducing the SRS Method for Mission Review and Strategy Development in Colleges and Universities [Video]

Developing strategy is a delicate and reflective process. Six interactive framing concepts help to shape strategy in higher education. The SRS Method is designed to provide a point of reference for the discussion of the six concepts. The SRS Pyramid depicts the schematic outlining a formal method for reviewing a mission statement and developing strategy in colleges and universities.

The SRS Pyramid frames seven interactive constructs built around and reflective of mission that shape an institution’s vision, focus its strategies, and achieve its position in the broadest global learning sphere. The SRS Pyramid recognizes that mission defines the role of an Institution within its defined sphere of influence. It is designed to provide a common reference point for structured dialog regarding each of the seven concepts and the relationships they have to mission and its fulfillment.

Dialogue begins with mission at the base of the pyramid and is directed right for a discussion of the Sphere of influence and left to illuminate the Role or roles played in that sphere or spheres. An institution’s or entity’s (school, college, department, program) sphere is defined by its geographic reach, competitive and collaborative contexts, and the communities of practice that influence or are influenced by the entity. The role of the entity – its purpose and function – within its sphere is defined by its mission. Environmental scanning and analysis (e.g., SWOT, GAP or other situational analyses) evaluate changes within the sphere for their impact on mission and role. As Sphere, Mission, and Role conditions and interactions are understood; strategists, planners, and constituents can invest in the creative process of determining a Vision for the future. Strategies are then developed to enable the vision. When implemented, the strategies modify and sustain an entity’s Strategic Position within its sphere of influence. In summary, Mission defines Sphere and Role, Vision relates Role to Strategy, Strategy redefines Strategic Position within and organizations Sphere of influence.

SRS Pyramid (Diagram)

The Sphere of an entity is defined by its geographic reach, competitive and collaborative organizations, subjects, disciplines, and communities of practice influenced by; and whose influence is exerted on the strategic entity. Each strategic entity is defined by its mission within a sphere that defines its role (purpose and function) within the sphere. Environmental scanning and analysis (often referred to as a SWOT Analysis for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) inform and evaluate changes within the sphere and how they impact mission and role. Environmental scanning without an analysis is a waste of time.

Once the Sphere, Mission, Role conditions and interaction are understood strategists, planners and constituents invest in the creative process of determining a vision of the future in which strengths are sustained or enhanced, weaknesses are addressed, opportunities are capitalized on and threats are mitigated. Strategies are then developed to enable the entity to realize its vision. When implemented the strategies modify and sustain the entities strategic position in its sphere of influence.

At the center of the pyramid lies the Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework (LCCF) providing a conceptual structure to guide dialog and inquiry about curriculum. It frames curriculum in its broadest strategic context and provides a framework for the design, implementation, and evaluation of curriculum within the broader context of institutional mission, vision, and strategy. The Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework, help unravel and clarify the complexities of translating mission, vision, and strategic position into effective curriculum as mapped across seven interlocking constructs:

  1. Learner Populations;
  2. Learner Objectives;
  3. Learning Provider Models;
  4. Learning Theory and Methods;
  5. Curriculum Architecture;
  6. Curriculum Configurations; and
  7. Learner Support Services

These constructs are, in turn, decoded or operationalized through seven learner-centered questions. When asked and answered, the questions are ideal for building, improving, and sustaining design integrity across curricular elements and guiding a wide array of institutional internal and external alignments.

The Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework is a tool that helps frame strategic dialog and analysis around the principles and practices of the concept learner-centered academic environments. This article describes the seven learner-centered questions that emanate from the Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework and  help frame a basic enrollment management perspective useful for strategic enrollment management professionals when they dialog with academics. The table below can be printed and guide deeper insight into the options revealed through each question.

Institute on Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning & Learner-Centered Curriculum 2015

Eventbrite - Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability

When: March 16 – 18, 2015

Where: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Claremont, California

The design of the Institute for Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning & Learner-Centered Curriculum recognizes the centrality of the learner to the curriculum and the primacy of the curriculum to the institutional strategic plan. It also recognizes that planning for education in the learning age is supported by a global digital learning ecosystem. The planning horizon is characterized by increased demands for accountability, increased competition, significant learner and institutional economic challenges, and significant differences of opinion on how the future should be approached.

Diagram-CCSPM

Who Should Attend

The institute is designed for institutional and academic leaders and planners, including chief planning officers, provosts, vice presidents, deans, department chairs, academic governance officers, interested faculty, accreditation team members, institutional planners, and institutional effectiveness professionals.  Our institutes explore critical elements of the academic and enrollment domains and shape new strategic horizons for colleges and universities.

I just completed a 3 day Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability (December 2014) with Michael and it was tremendously helpful. Not only did my enrollment VP and I gain a better understanding of the impact that the curriculum has on enrollment’s ability to recruit students but we learned many very practical examples of what works and what doesn’t in designing curriculum and attracting students. I think the Program of Study plan is very helpful in helping faculty design narratives that enrollment can use to sell programs. I would recommend Michael and his workshops to anyone who is open-minded enough to believe that higher ed needs to change and we have to get in front of that change if we are to survive and thrive! – Christine Pharr, Ph.D., Vice President for Academic Affairs, College of Saint Mary, Omaha, NE

Our Institute series recognizes the need for unprecedented collaboration between academic and enrollment domains guided by new visionary strategic plans that forge a cohesive approach to a future full of uncertainty. We continually develop resources to help the journey into the future.

I had the opportunity to attend Michael’s first institute of this series on Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability. As a former Chief Academic Officer who thought she had a pretty reasonable grasp of enrollment management strategies and their critical integration with academic affairs planning – I was astonished about how much I learned not just from MGD in his presentations and discussions, but from those enrollment management leaders in attendance . The institute served to crystallize in just 2 days an approach, a way of thinking and resources that all provide a pathway for the work we need to do for our own institutions. Based upon the postings already offered to us on https://mgdolence.com/, this next institute appears to be a very logical next step – especially for academic leadership – to fully grasp what is involved in a academic planning for meeting our enrollment challenges in this new learning age. – Margaret K. McLaughlin, Ph.D., Carlow University, Pittsburgh, PA

Session Summaries

  • Session I: Vision, Mission, Position Review
    Begins with a review of the vision, mission and strategic position of the institution and establishes a strategy baseline using the SRS method.
  • Session II: Learner Centrality
    Examines the tenets of learner-centerdness using a formal framework detailing seven framing questions.
  • Session III: Curriculum Architecture
    Reviews the basics of curriculum architecture and explores options and implications of choices on the alignment with enrollment markets.
  • Session IV: Master Academic Plan (MAP)
    Examines the fundamental role a MAP plays in the development of an institutional strategic plan. A focus on alignment with the principles of sustainability is maintained while exploring the implications of various curricular scenarios.
  • Session V: The Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning Model
    Examines the seven basic steps in the Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning Model.
  • Session VI: The Changing Learning Landscape
    Explores various dimensions of the emerging learning age paradigm powered by a global digital learning ecosystem. The current state of innovation is examined and the implications of several important case examples are explored. Innovative programs of study and the fundamentals of effective program design are explored, as-well-as methods of embedding market value into programs of study.
  • Session VII: Institutional Strategies, Tactics, Goals and Objectives
    Structuring effective institutional strategies, tactics, goals and objectives as a means of optimizing short range (bump), mid range, and long range enrollment and fiscal health.
  • Session VIII: Prototyping a Learning Age Strategic Plan
    Posits four essental strategies and eight supportive tactical plans designed to build a sustainable future.

Institute Agenda

March 16, 2015

  • 10:00 am – Check-in & Registration
  • 1:00 pm – Session I: Vision, Mission, Position Review
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session II: Learner Centrality
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

March 17, 2015

  • 8:00 am – Continental Breakfast (Provided)
  • 8:30 am – Session III: Curriculum Architecture
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session IV: Master Academic Plan
  • 12:00 pm Lunch (Provided) Break, Check In & Networking
  • 1:00 pm – Session V: The Curriculum Centered Strategic Planning Model
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session VI: The Changing Learning Landscape
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

March 18, 2015

  • 8:00 am Continental Breakfast (Provided) & Networking
  • 8:30 am – Session VII: Institutional Strategies, Tactics, Goals and Objectives
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session VIII: Prototyping a Learning Age Strategic Plan
  • 12:00 pm – Adjourn

Institute Philosophy & Pedagogy

COAS MGDA Cert0001The current paradigm shift to the learning age is powered by a global digital learning ecosystem and requires unprecedented focus on academic strategy to meet the challenges it presents. The institute is built around a philosophy that is both learner and learning centered, focused through a lens that is intensely curriculum-centered. The Institute curriculum frames a strategic plan that is designed to deliver practical strategic solutions for short, medium and long range impact. Institute pedagogy uses a blended seminar style guided by a digital interactive syllabus with readings, self-study and participant dialog. Participants will use their institution as the subject of their case study. Participants will have the opportunity for interaction with institute colleagues long after attending the program as they contribute to the strategic planning community of practice.

About the Faculty

Michael G. DolenceMichael Dolence is President of Michael G. Dolence and Associates, a global research and consulting firm specializing in innovation in education, academic planning, curriculum development and enrollment management. Michael developed the Strategic Decision Engine, a structured strategic planning model published in Working Toward Strategic Change. Continued development lead to the Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning model and the Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework. To facilitate the development of 21st century curricula he synthesized the Proficiency Based Curriculum Architecture Model.

MGDA has developed a comprehensive curriculum planning and prototyping software system used to design academic prototypes for new universities and academic facilities worldwide. The system supports program of study design and development as-well-as academic optimization scenario analysis and innovative curricula design.

Logistics

  • Institute Terms of Payment and Refund Policy
  • Enrollment is limited to 40 participants.
  • Accommodations are NOT included in Institute Registration and are the responsibility of the attendee. A separate link directly to the hotel is provided for convenience.
  • Institute seating is rounds of 6 providing ample space for each participant.
  • Wi-Fi will support access to online resources.
  • We recommend at least two individuals from an institution attend, one from institutional planning and one from academic governance or leadership.
  • Monday afternoon start time permits Saturday air travel and Wednesday departure and is served by five airports (LAX, SNA, BUR, ONT, LGB ).
  • Claremont location is central to Los Angeles area sites and attractions.
  • Participants are on their own for dinner Monday and Tuesday. Options include hotel dining or the numerous restaurants in the village of Claremont.
  • Hotel Shuttle is available for the short ride to the village or take your time and enjoy the walk through the streets of the City of Trees.

Selected Topics to be Covered

As we work through the concepts and construct individual pathways to developing a strategic plan there are a hosts of tools, methods, concepts and approaches we will introduce and use. Here are a few examples:

Curriculum Architecture

What is curriculum architecture and why is it important? How is it incorporated into SEM Strategy? How does academic strategy inform SEM strategy via curriculum architecture? How does SEM strategy inform curriculum and how are the insights rendered into implementable initiatives?

SRS Method of Strategy Development & Mission Review

The SRS Method provides a framework for structured dialog that integrates institutional mission and vision with curriculum and enrollment management. How does mission and vision translate to strategy and sustainability?

Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability 2015

Eventbrite - Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability

When: June 22 – 24, 2015

Where: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Claremont, California

CurriculumDrivesQuote

Strategies for Enrollment and Fiscal Sustainability

The design of the Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability recognizes that academic leadership and enrollment management professionals must join forces in order to meet the challenges and opportunities of higher education as it is carried into the future by the paradigm shift to a global digital learning ecosystem. Once joined, they form a resilient and effective Academic SEM community of practice capable of forging near, mid, and long term strategies for enrollment and fiscal health.

Session Summaries

  • Session I: Academic SEM Structures
    Reviews the various structures involved in Academic SEM. Participants will assess their institutional structures with the intent of developing collaboration between academics and enrollment managers.
  • Session II: Academic SEM Strategies
    Establishes a strategy baseline using the SRS method. Illustrates examples of Academic SEM strategies and extrapolates to institutional academic and SEM cultures.
  • Session III: Curriculum Architecture
    Reviews the basics of curriculum architecture and assesses the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats emanating from the degree of alignment between architecture and enrollment markets.
  • Session IV: Curriculum Options and Optimization
    Examines the principles of sustainability and applies them to various curricular scenarios.
  • Session V: The SEM Factor
    Examines basic principles of effective enrollment management and the fit and friction points encountered in academic SEM collaboration. Introduces the tyranny or the synergy of the link, or lack thereof, between academic and SEM calendars and cycles.
  • Session VI: Program of Study Strategies
    Programs of Study are the lifeblood of academic institutions. The fundamentals of effective program design, emergent models and methods of embedding marketable value into a program of study are examined and evaluated.
  • Session VII: Campaign Strategies
    Enrollment health is built via sustained campaigns. Campaign design will be presented as a means of optimizing short range (bump), mid range, and long range enrollment and fiscal health.
  • Session VIII: The Academic SEM Plan
    Evaluates and constructs the principles of integrating the Master Academic Plan with the Strategic Enrollment Management Plan.

Agenda

June 22, 2015

  • 10:00 am – Check-in & Registration
  • 1:00 pm – Session I: Academic SEM Structures
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session II: Academic SEM Strategies
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

June 23, 2015

  • 8:00 am – Continental Breakfast (Provided)
  • 8:30 am – Session III: Curriculum Architecture
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session IV: Curriculum Options and Optimization
  • 12:00 pm Lunch (Provided) Break, Check In & Networking
  • 1:00 pm – Session V: The SEM Factor
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session VI: Program of Study Strategies
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

June 24, 2015

  • 8:00 am Continental Breakfast (Provided)  & Networking
  • 8:30 am – Session VII: Campaign Strategies
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session VIII: The Academic SEM Plan
  • 12:00 pm – Adjourn

Institute Philosophy & Pedagogy

The current paradigm shift requires unprecedented synergy and collaboration between academic and enrollment management. A philosophy that is both learner and learning centered must be focused through a lens that is intensely curriculum-centered. The Institute curriculum delivers practical strategic solutions for short, medium and long range impact. Institute pedagogy uses a blended seminar style guided by a digital interactive syllabus with readings, self-study and participant dialog. Participant’s institution will be the subject of their case study. Participants will have the opportunity for interaction with institute colleagues long after attending the program as they contribute to the emerging Academic SEM community of practice.

About the Faculty

Michael G. DolenceMichael Dolence is President of Michael G. Dolence and Associates, a global research consulting firm specializing in innovation in education,  academic planning, curriculum development and enrollment management. He authored the first Primer on Strategic Enrollment Management and is the originator of the concept of Academic Strategic Enrollment Management. His career includes extensive research and analysis of financial aid efficacy, utilization, and policy impacts for both federal and state aid. He has conducted more than 140 post mortem analysis of colleges and universities that have failed and either closed or were merged with another institution. MGDA has developed a comprehensive curriculum planning and prototyping software system used to design academic prototypes for new universities worldwide. The system also supports program of study design and development as well as academic optimization scenario analysis.

Logistics

  • Institute Terms of Payment and Refund Policy
  • Enrollment is limited to 40 participants.
  • Accommodations are NOT included in Institute Registration and are the responsibility of the attendee. A separate link directly to the hotel is provided for convenience.
  • Institute seating is rounds of 6 providing ample space for each participant.
  • Wi-Fi will support access to online resources.
  • We recommend at least two individuals from an institution attend, one from enrollment management and one from academic leadership.
  • Monday afternoon start time permits Saturday air travel and Wednesday departure and is served by five airports (LAX, SNA, BUR, ONT, LGB ).
  • Claremont location is central to Los Angeles area sites and attractions.
  • Participants are on their own for dinner Monday and Tuesday. Options include hotel dining or the numerous restaurants in the village of Claremont.
  • Hotel Shuttle is available for the short ride to the village or take your time and enjoy the walk through the streets of the city of trees.

Certificate of Advanced Study

COAS MGDA Cert0001

Selected Topics to be Covered

As we work through the concepts and construct individual pathways to addressing enrollment shortfalls, recruitment yield, and developing strategic position in the enrollment marketplace there are a hosts of tools, methods, concepts and approaches we will introduce and use. Here are a few examples:

Curriculum Architecture

What is curriculum architecture and why is it important? How is it incorporated into SEM Strategy? How does academic strategy inform SEM strategy via curriculum architecture? How does SEM strategy inform curriculum and how are the insights rendered into implementable initiatives?

Strategic Enrollment Management Matrix

What is the SEM Matrix and how is it used in planning, decision making and campaign development? What are the seven learner-centered questions that help focus development of sustainable solutions?

SRS Method of Strategy Development & Mission Review

The SRS Method provides a framework for structured dialog that integrates institutional mission and vision with curriculum and enrollment management. How does mission and vision translate to strategy and sustainability?

Academic Strategies and Master Academic Planning 2015

Eventbrite - Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability

When: February 16 – 18, 2015

Where: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Claremont, California

The design of the Institute for Academic Strategies and Master Academic Planning recognizes that academic leaders must plan to meet the challenges and opportunities of higher education as it is carried into the future by the paradigm shift to a global digital learning ecosystem. Without a Master Academic Plan, an Institutional Strategic Plan is powerless at forging near, mid, and long term strategies for enrollment and fiscal health.

Master Academic Plan (Graphic)

Who Should Attend

The institute is designed for academic leaders, including provosts, vice presidents, deans, department chairs, academic governance officers, interested faculty, accreditation team members, institutional planners, and institutional effectiveness professionals.

Session Summaries

  • Session I: Academic Structures, Cycles and Workflows 
    Reviews the various structures involved in managing the Academic Enterprise. Participants will assess their institutional structures against the characteristics of the emerging global digital learning ecosystem and the transformations a number of institutions are already doing to serve contemporary learners.
  • Session II: Academic Strategies, Tactics and Capacities 
    Introduces a structured approach to designing, developing and implementing academic strategies and developing new capacities required to meet the challenges of the learning age powered by a global digital learning ecosystem.
  • Session III: Curriculum Architecture and Specifications 
    Reviews the basics of curriculum architecture and assesses the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats emanating from the degree of alignment between architecture, program design, course options, assessment strategies, and curriculum-learner optimization pathways.
  • Session IV: Curriculum Options and Optimization
    Examines the principles of sustainability and applies them to various curricular scenarios. Focuses on innovating from where you are with what you have.
  • Session V: Curriculum Prototyping and Modeling
    Examines basic principles of effective academic management and the fit and friction points encountered in academic collaboration, strategy development and implementation. Developing synergy between academic missions, visions, perspectives, calendars and workflow cycles.
  • Session VI: Program of Study Strategies
    Programs of Study are the lifeblood of academic institutions. The fundamentals of effective program design, emergent models and methods of embedding marketable value into a program of study are examined and evaluated.
  • Session VII: The Master Academic Plan I
    Examines the basic structure and functions of a Master Academic Plan beginning with Curriculum Architecture (Session III) and building to a comprehensive academic vision.
  • Session VIII: The Master Academic Plan II
    Evaluates and constructs the principles of integrating the Master Academic Plan with the institutional planning system and various plans. (e.g. Institutional Strategic Plan, Strategic Enrollment Management Plan, Campus Master Plan, Fiscal Plan, Human Resources Plan…).

Agenda

February 16, 2015

  • 10:00 am – Check-in & Registration
  • 1:00 pm – Session I: Academic Structures, Cycles and Workflows
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session II: Academic Strategies, Tactics and Capacities
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

February 17, 2015

  • 8:00 am – Continental Breakfast (Provided)
  • 8:30 am – Session III: Curriculum Architecture and Specifications
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session IV: Curriculum Options and Optimization
  • 12:00 pm Lunch (Provided) Break, Check In & Networking
  • 1:00 pm – Session V: Curriculum Prototyping and Modeling
  • 3:00 pm – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 3:20 pm – Session VI: Program of Study Strategies
  • 5:00 pm – Sessions Conclude

February 18, 2015

  • 8:00 am Continental Breakfast (Provided)  & Networking
  • 8:30 am – Session VII: The Master Academic Plan I
  • 10:00 am – Break, Check In & Networking
  • 10:20 am – Session VIII: The Master Academic Plan II
  • 12:00 pm – Adjourn

Institute Philosophy & Pedagogy

The current paradigm shift to the learning age powered by a  global digital learning ecosystem requires unprecedented focus on academic strategy. Our philosophy is both learner and learning centered, focused through a lens that is intensely curriculum-centered. The Institute curriculum delivers practical strategic solutions for short, medium and long range impact. Institute pedagogy uses a blended seminar style guided by a digital interactive syllabus with readings, self-study and participant dialog. Participants will use their institution as the subject of their case study. Participants will have the opportunity for interaction with institute colleagues long after attending the program as they contribute to the emerging Academic community of practice.

About the Faculty

Michael G. DolenceMichael Dolence is President of Michael G. Dolence and Associates, a global research consulting firm specializing in innovation in education, academic planning, curriculum development and enrollment management. Michael developed the Strategic Decision Engine, a structured strategic planning model published in Working Toward Strategic Change. Continued development lead to the Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning Model and the Learner-Centered Curriculum Framework. To facilitate the development of 21st century curricula, he synthesized the Proficiency Based Curriculum Architecture Model.

MGDA has developed a comprehensive curriculum planning and prototyping software system used to design academic prototypes for new universities and academic facilities worldwide. The system supports program of study design and development, as-well-as, academic optimization scenario analysis and innovative curricula design.

Institute Logistics

  • Institute Terms of Payment and Refund Policy
  • Enrollment is limited to 40 participants.
  • Accommodations are NOT included in Institute Registration and are the responsibility of the attendee. A separate link directly to the hotel is provided for convenience.
  • Institute seating is rounds of 6 providing ample space for each participant.
  • Wi-Fi will support access to online resources.
  • We recommend at least two individuals from an institution attend to provide a wider perspective and deeper insight.
  • Monday afternoon start time permits Saturday air travel and Wednesday departure and is served by five airports (LAX, SNA, BUR, ONT, LGB).
  • Claremont location is central to Los Angeles area sites and attractions.
  • Participants are on their own for dinner Monday and Tuesday. Options include hotel dining or the numerous restaurants in the village of Claremont.
  • Hotel Shuttle is available for the short ride to the village or take your time and enjoy the walk through the streets of the City of Trees.

MGDA Transformational Strategies Institutes 2015

LogoInsitute-Wide-500

In our continuing effort to support our clients, MGDA is excited to announce our schedule of Transformational Strategies Institutes for 2015.

The transformation of higher education is evolving more rapidly with each annual cycle. While dealing with the annual litany of challenges, remember that a longer more permanent transformation is underway. The paradigm shift to the learning age is powered by a global digital learning ecosystem requiring unprecedented focus on academic and enrollment strategy. The planning horizon is characterized by increased demands for accountability, increased competition, significant learner and institutional economic challenges, and significant differences of opinion on how the future should be approached.

I just completed a 3 day Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability (December 2014) with Michael and it was tremendously helpful. Not only did my enrollment VP and I gain a better understanding of the impact that the curriculum has on enrollment’s ability to recruit students but we learned many very practical examples of what works and what doesn’t in designing curriculum and attracting students. I think the Program of Study plan is very helpful in helping faculty design narratives that enrollment can use to sell programs. I would recommend Michael and his workshops to anyone who is open-minded enough to believe that higher ed needs to change and we have to get in front of that change if we are to survive and thrive! – Christine Pharr, Ph.D., Vice President for Academic Affairs, College of Saint Mary, Omaha, NE

Our Institute series recognizes the need for unprecedented collaboration between academic and enrollment domains guided by new visionary strategic plans that forge a cohesive approach to a future full of uncertainty. We continually develop resources to help the journey into the future.

COAS MGDA Cert0001MGDA began offering Institutes covering Transformational Strategies in 1998, shortly after publishing Transforming Higher Education. For 2015, we are planning five programs, all to be held in Claremont, California. Enrollment is limited to 40 participants in each event. All events will be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Claremont, 555 W. Foothill Blvd. Claremont (Los Angeles Area), California 91711. Each Institute begins Monday afternoon permitting Saturday air travel and Wednesday departure helping to keep air travel costs contained. Los Angeles is served by five airports (LAX, SNA, BUR, ONT, LGB ). The Claremont location is central to Los Angeles area sites and attractions. Registration can be completed online and participants can either be invoiced in advance or register by credit card.

Institute for Academic Strategies and Master Academic Planning

Events-EventBriteSideBar_01The Institute for Academic Strategies and Master Academic Planning recognizes that academic leaders must plan to meet the challenges and opportunities of higher education as it is carried into the future by the paradigm shift to a global digital learning ecosystem. Without a Master Academic Plan, an Institutional Strategic Plan is powerless at forging near, mid, and long term strategies for enrollment and fiscal health.

Institute for Curriculum Centered Strategic Planning & Learner-Centered Curriculum

Events-EventBriteSideBar_02The Institute for Curriculum-Centered Strategic Planning & Learner-Centered Curriculum recognizes the centrality of the learner to the curriculum and the primacy of the curriculum to the institutional strategic plan. It also recognizes that planning for education in the learning age is supported by a global digital learning ecosystem. The planning horizon is characterized by increased demands for accountability, increased competition, significant learner and institutional economic challenges, and significant differences of opinion on how the future should be approached.

Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability

Events-EventBriteSideBar_03The Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management and Sustainability recognizes that academic leadership and enrollment management professionals must join forces in order to meet the challenges and opportunities of higher education as it is carried into the future by the paradigm shift to a global digital learning ecosystem. Once joined, they form a resilient and effective Academic SEM community of practice capable of forging near, mid, and long term strategies for enrollment and fiscal health.

Institute for Academic Strategic Enrollment Management Campaign Design

Events-EventBriteSideBar_04The Academic SEM Campaign Planning Workshop acknowledges that the nature, scope, and methods of recruiting have changed dramatically over the past few years. The workshop recalibrates the fundamental components, restructures an alignment around five integrated workflows, the intent of which, is to develop a strong competitive position in the enrollment marketplace. A well constructed campaign once developed and launched is capable of sustaining near, mid, and long term strategies for enrollment performance and fiscal health.

Institute for Academic SEM Curriculum Development Workshop

Events-EventBriteSideBar_05The Academic SEM Curriculum Development Workshop recognizes that enrollment performance and the quality of the curriculum can both be significantly enhanced when curriculum is prepared, aligned, reengineered, or tweaked with enrollment markets in mind. The workshop articulates methods to recalibrate fundamental curriculum design and content to better align with the enrollment marketplace. The workshop is designed to help academics and enrollment managers to better position curriculum and programs of study in the complex global learning marketplace and improving enrollment performance.

“Curriculum drives enrollment, enrollment drives revenue, revenues drive everything else!”

There are numerous myths regarding the basics of managing an academic enterprise. Through them all shines one inexorable truth, “Curriculum drives enrollment, enrollment drives revenue, revenues drive everything else!” Because the curriculum generates the primary source of revenue, the relationship between revenue and expenditure per unit is the primary area of concern. In the case example below revenue are tallied by course section (as the primary unit of accounting), expenditures include direct section costs and the section share of overall institutional costs to sum to expenditure. The condition where revenue meets or exceeds expenditures, the difference between revenue and expenditure is called a margin. The difference is called a deficit when expenditures exceed revenue. When the average section size is lower than the break-even section size, the deficit is said to be structural.

Case study illustrating structural deficit and the principle of managing the margin. Shows impact of average section size on sustainability. This case example of margin is a highly distilled illustrative study from a client engagement.

Case study illustrating structural deficit and the principle of managing the margin. Shows impact of average section size on sustainability. This case example of the margin is a highly distilled illustrative study from a client engagement.

This case example of the margin is a highly distilled illustrative study from a client engagement. It shows that the actual revenue for the 5,000 enrollment institution was $44.3 million and could support for example 1,443 sections averaging 20.68 students per section. The actual expenditures for the institution were $57.4 million, the institution offered 1,871 sections and enrolled on average 15.96 students per section. This real scenario generated a structural deficit of $13.1 million offset by deferred maintenance, a suspension of non-essential travel, a hold on new hires, a reduction in staff, a reduction in benefits, the sale of real estate, increased cost recovery from grants and contracts, and creative cash management.

The curious element in this case study was a report to the Board of Trustees that mentioned a positive cycle developing in the economy and the potential for more favorable economic circumstances ahead. I offer Bill Gates observation on the subject,

 …the second biggest pot of money, which is the education pot, both K-12 and higher ed, gets raided. And, so, on a per student basis, that money has gone down, and there’s no likely prospect that it will go back up. Some people have thought of it as cyclical, but, in fact, if you look at the last several cycles, it goes down in the cycle and then, during the good years, it stays at that level, and then, as the next cycle is hit, it’s gone down again.  – Bill Gates, on The Future of College, NACUBO, August 8, 2014

Managing the margin requires massage of several variables including tuition, enrollment, the number of sections offered and average enrollment in each section. Every institution should calculate and know what their break-even sections size is given their other variables. Every academic should understand these basic relationships and the concepts of margin and structural deficit. Each institution is different in how revenues and expenditures are managed so talk to your Chief Financial Officer and get the facts.