The policy review process began at the end of 2012 when a USG Policy Review Task Force was formed to examine system policies and procedures through the lens of college completion. The goal is to assess which policies may be inadvertently stifling creativity on our campuses, potentially creating barriers for students as well as determine what policies do we not have in place that could support student success. This unique process revealed that many current policies and procedures were put into place nearly two decades ago, when the landscape of higher education looked very different. A number of these antiquated policies are cumbersome to navigate, seem unreasonably inflexible and are potentially impeding student progress.
With Complete College Georgia (CCG) and the effort to dramatically increase the number of Georgians with postsecondary credentialing, institutions will need to engage in creative thinking and strategizing to meet the completion goals specified under CCG. Policy should encourage this type of strategizing and not serve as an inadvertent hindrance. The USG policy review task force made broad recommendations from this perspective.
A number of the task force’s more general recommendations have undergone an in-depth analysis by more issue-focused committees. The result has been the emergence of more specific policy and procedure recommendations that have led to changes to the Board of Regents Policy Manual and the Academic & Student Affairs Handbook. While we have seen some initial “policy victories”, there are still a number of outstanding policy areas in need of further analysis. More generally, as an inherently stable body of work, policy is in need of systematic review in order to adapt to higher education’s changing environment. For these reasons and more, maintaining a policy and procedural review process is imperative.
POLICY REVIEW COMMITTEES
USG Completion Policy Leadership Council – The USG Completion Policy Leadership Council (Council), working closely with the USG Completion Policy Working Group (Working Group), manages the policy review and approval process. The Council will intake policy and procedural issues from the Working Group. After reviewing, the Council will assist with developing a work plan for each issue. The Council will vet initial recommendations and facilitate the final approval and communication process. The group will be key for ensuring that the review process moves forward and is carried through in an efficient manner. The group will meet quarterly or as needed.
Potential Representation From:
USG Completion Policy Working Group – The USG Completion Policy Working Group (Working Group) will consist of eight to ten members from the system office and from the institutions who will work together to carry out the “on the ground” functions of the policy review process. The Working Group will be responsible for the collection, organization and dissemination of policy issues. These issues will be funneled to the appropriate USG Academic and Administrative committees or to a newly created ad hoc policy group to conduct an in-depth review and provide recommendations. The Working Group will compile recommendations and direct them to the USG Completion Policy Leadership Council (Council) for review and to facilitate the final approval process. This group will be key for the overall management of the policy review process including providing research on policy issues and evaluating policy updates. This group will meet monthly or as needed.
Potential Representation From:
“Ad Hoc Policy Review Committee” – An “Ad Hoc Policy Review Committee” (Ad Hoc Committee) is a general name to represent a group that conducts an in-depth analysis of a policy and/or procedure and produces a set of detailed recommendations. This type of committee will consist of members who are experts with extensive content knowledge of the policy and/or procedure under review. The USG Completion Policy Working Group will provide assistance to such a group. This group may be an existing USG Advisory Committee (Administrative or Academic) or could be newly formed.
These three groups will work in tandem to drive a continuous review process and to ensure the relevancy of USG policy and procedure.
POLICY REVIEW PROCESS
A visual representation of this process can be found here.