Auburn University Strategic Plan

Priority 2: Building the Research-Enterprise Foundation
The Auburn University System values the research, scholarship, and creative endeavors of our faculty and will build the foundation for a stronger and larger research enterprise.


Initiative 2: Expand graduate programs.

Strategic Priority 21: Graduate Students | 75% COMPLETE

Auburn University continues to place an emphasis on increasing the number of graduate students to 5,000.

"The Auburn campus will recommit to enrolling 5,000 graduate students on campus or through distance learning. The Montgomery campus will set a goal of enrolling 800 graduate students. The Auburn campus will maintain stipends for graduate teaching and research assistants, in general, at national norms. The Montgomery campus will maintain stipends, in general, at regional norms. We will also continue to increase health benefits for graduate students to at least the SREB median.  In addition, the Auburn and Montgomery campuses should increase the number of international graduate students by 50 percent."

Summary of Progress Achieved:

  • A number of initiatives for increased growth have been developed, including increased graduate certificate programs (16 have been approved by the Board of Trustees), new distance learning offerings, and eight new Accelerated Bachelors-Masters Programs.
  • Graduate student enrollment for 2011-12 was 4,005 total students. In fall 2012, post-baccalaureate enrollment was 4,959 students. This category is composed of 1,042 professional-doctorate students in Pharmacy and Veterinary Medicine (up 2.4%) and 3,917 graduate students in other programs (down 2.2%).

 

Strategic Priority 22: Distance Education | 30% COMPLETE

Auburn University continues to support the development of Distance Education by creating additional online courses and targeted programs at both undergraduate and graduate levels.

"While the capacity to greatly expand the number of students on the Auburn campus is limited, we will examine specific disciplines that may present opportunities for distance education. Our goal is to offer 20 such graduate degree programs."

Summary of Progress Achieved:

  • Auburn University continues to support the development of Distance Education by creating additional online courses and targeted programs at both undergraduate and graduate levels.
  • As of fall 2011, nine new Distance Course offerings have been developed and are being offered. An additional six courses are in development to be taught beginning in spring 2012. A long-term goal is to offer 20-30new undergraduate distance courses with a minimum enrollment of 25 students per section. This will assist with the capacity issue by adding 500 seats in core and high demand courses.
  • New university guidelines were established for Distance Education that address a new funding approach and oversight of course construction and instruction, in conjunction with SACS standards. The Office of Distance Education has participated in the AG Idea Consortium (graduate level), to encourage online degree programs and increase graduate student enrollment.
  • The Office of Distance Learning & Testing Services in the Biggio Center continues to support academic units in developing and offering new online courses in a wide variety of academic disciplines. Pedagogy support, instructional design, technology innovation and assessment are all areas in which Auburn faculty receive professional development services from the Biggio Center. In addition, the unit works closely with academic programs and other units (such as the Miller Writing Center) to ensure that distance students receive appropriate support services that are comparable to those received by on campus students.

Strategic Priority 23: Graduate Programs | COMPLETED

Auburn University has examined graduate school policies and ensured they are aligned with those of our peer institutions.

"We expect to continue the systematic review and evaluation of graduate programs. The provost will charge the new dean of the Graduate School with performing a comprehensive review and situation assessment of Auburn's graduate programs in research disciplines."

Summary of Progress Achieved:

  • Auburn University has examined graduate school policies and ensured they are aligned with those of our peer institutions.
  • In fall 2009, the Graduate School worked with a peer review team and had two evaluators visit campus. The reviewers identified a number of areas and provided suggested changes, such as continuous enrollment and the Accelerated Bachelors/Master's Program.

Last Updated: Feb. 22, 2013

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