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Columbus State University Campus Plan Update 2015

Institutional Mission and Student Body Profile

Columbus State University is a four-year public institution that offers more than 100 programs at the certificate, associate, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, and doctoral levels. Many degrees are conferred in professional areas of pursuit at both undergraduate and graduate levels in response to student demand and service area needs.

Institutional Mission

The mission of Columbus State University is:

We empower people to contribute to the advancement of our local and global communities through an emphasis on excellence in teaching and research, life-long learning, cultural enrichment, public-private partnerships, and service to others.

The institutional focus on excellence in teaching and research as well as the emphasis on life-long learning, cultural enrichment, public-private partnerships and service to others influences the key priorities of the college completion work undertaken by Columbus State University. Because effective teaching is a central component of student success, the CSU Faculty Center for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning supports faculty members as they investigate and implement new pedagogical strategies that support millennial learners. The University financially supports student research and creative inquiry projects facilitated by faculty mentors. CSU has a strong commitment to service and has provided significant leadership in meeting the needs of the community, the region, and the state through endeavors such as the Early College initiative, service to military-affiliated students, and the development of high-quality online programs that allow students to decrease time to completion and increase the timely accomplishment of their educational goals regardless of their geographic location.

Student Body Profile

In Fall 2014, CSU enrolled 8,194 students, including an undergraduate student population of 6,879. Enrollment has remained flat over the past four years with a 2.7% decline in undergraduate enrollment from Fall 2010 – Fall 2014. The institution’s population is comprised of 64% full-time students. CSU also follows national trends with the female population representing 60% of the student body. The student population is 53% white, 36% black, 2% Asian, 5% Hispanic, and 4% other (American Indian or Alaskan Native, international, two or more races, or unknown). Since Fall 2010, the number of transfer students has risen by 13.9%.  In Fall 2014, the institution increased the number of new transfer students by 36 (5.5%) from the previous year. Of the new transfer students in Fall 2014, 61 (9%) transferred from Columbus Technical College, with whom the university has a robust articulation agreement. Of the total undergraduate student population, 2,143 (31%) of these students were first generation college students.

Columbus State University utilizes moderately selective admissions standards and processes for most applicants (high school grade point average of 2.5 and SAT minimum scores of 440 Critical Reading and 410 Math or ACT English 17/Math 17). Modified standards are utilized for applicants within the local service area in accordance with the University System of Georgia-mandated local access mission (high school grade point average of 2.0 and SAT minimum scores of 330 Critical Reading and 310 Math or ACT English 12/Math 14).

The University System of Georgia (USG) designates CSU as one of the three “access” institutions within the state because no state colleges in the USG are located within the geographic service area. The service area of Columbus State University is defined in terms of the following Georgia counties: Chattahoochee, Harris, Marion, Meriwether, Muscogee, Stewart, Talbot, Taylor, and Troup. In Fall 2014, 45.4% of the new student population was drawn from these counties.

The University takes pride in its role as an access institution, but this role also presents challenges in student recruitment and retention. As noted in Tables 1.1 and 1.2 below, students admitted with learning support status through the institution’s access mission were retained and graduated at much lower rates than students admitted with regular admission status.

Table 1.1: CSU Retention Rate Trends: 2008-2009 through 2013-2014








Non-Learning Support







Learning Support














Table 1.2: CSU Bachelor’s Degree Six-Year Graduation Rate Trends: 2003-2009 through 2008-2014








Non-Learning Support







Learning Support















Columbus State University continues to address the goals and objectives identified in the CSU Complete College Georgia plan. We look forward to continuing this work as we believe that it will positively impact the lives of our students.

Institutional Completion Goals, High-Impact Strategies and Activities

Goal 1.2 Increase degree completion in STEM fields.

CSU has been and will continue to be successful in attracting students to and graduating students from our STEM programs. In 2014-2015, we focused our efforts on outcomes designed to address recruitment efforts, RPG concerns, and instructional best practices.  Meeting this goal would make Columbus State a contender in the competition for math, science, computer science and engineering students. CSU is striving to become a “First Choice” institution for STEM study. 

Strategy 1.2 Increase degree completion in STEM fields.


Increase the number of students graduating with degrees in the STEM fields.

High-impact strategy

Our high impact strategy focused on successful outcomes designed to address recruitment efforts, RPG concerns, and instructional best practices.

Summary of the Activities

Recruitment Efforts

1.Offered STEM Honors Camp (a two-week residential experience) to encourage high school students’ interest in STEM fields at CSU, and to encourage CSU students to consider teaching in STEM fields. Students are recruited from all over Georgia and from nearby Alabama counties.

·        24 students attended and 23 completed an end-of-camp survey with over 50 items. Highlights of that survey:

  • 18 of the students associated camp experiences with moderate/large gains in their          enthusiasm for STEM.
  • 18 of the students associated camp experiences with moderate/large gains in their desire to take more STEM classes.          
  • 19 of the students associated camp experiences with moderate or large gains in their desire to pursue a degree in STEM.

·       We bring, on average, one of those students to CSU as a student each year.

2.      Participated in the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program. In the past, we have offered these scholarships to CSU juniors and seniors but plan to expand the program to attract more transfer students into the UTeach Program.

·       We participated in Noyce but have not yet done all that we wanted in terms of recruiting transfer students. We began the development of a new brochure to recruit transfer students but a variety of circumstances have delayed its completion. Still aiming to pursue this in 2015-2016 to recruit students to start Fall 2016. Six out of 9 Noyce scholarships awarded for Fall 2015, went to students who transferred in more than 60 credit hours. Two of those scholarship recipients were newly enrolled at CSU in FY16.

·       CSU is one of three schools in the state to offer Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowships starting in Fall 2015. CSU has 1/3 of the fellows (12/36).

3.      Projected FOCUS replication via the first two courses in the UTeach Columbus program

·       In 2014-2015, offered 6 sections of UTCH 1201 that enrolled a total of 43 students, and offered 2 sections of UTCH 1202 that enrolled a total of 25 students.

RPG Efforts

4.      Provided free tutoring to students in gateway STEM courses. In FY15, 456 students (17+254+185, by term) logged 1839 visits (42+997+800) to seek tutoring in gateway courses (4.03 visits per student).  Just to emphasize – this does not capture all of the tutoring that was conducted. It omits tutoring for Learning Support courses, some upper division STEM courses, math/science courses for Early Childhood Education majors, and non-STEM courses such as BUSA 3115 (Quantitative Analysis for Business Decisions I) and others.

5.      Trained and provided Peer Instruction Leaders for targeted STEM introductory level courses. (See data in #6 below.)

6.      Added peer leader support for developmental math courses and continued this practice for college algebra. Since math is one of the chief obstacles of college completion for many students (including students majoring in science and computer science), boosting success rates in this area should help with retention of students in STEM paths.

·       Provided support for developmental math courses in Fall 2014, but not in Spring 2015. Peer leaders for Learning Support math courses were paid out of Learning Support course fees, which were not available for employing Peer Leaders in Spring 2015.

·       Provided peer leader support for College Algebra as well as gateway science courses in biology, chemistry and geology both semesters; provided support for physics in Fall 2014. Some data on the FY15 peer leader program, collected for the Institutional Services report:

  • In FY15, the Peer Leader program fielded 19 peer leader slots covering BIOL 1215, CHEM 1211, CHEM 1212, GEOL 1110, GEOL 1121, MATH 0097, MATH 0098, MATH 0195, MATH 1101, MATH 1111, and PHYS 1111. The following metrics  were obtained:
    • -1914 students registered in course sections served
    • 196 unique students served
    • Over 4,157 hours of student support provided

7.      Submitted a grant proposal to launch a summer bridge program, peer leader support, and academic community building among targeted groups of freshmen (1st generation, rural, and female students) interested in STEM fields.

·       The Project Fusion proposal was submitted to the National Science Foundation in January 2015. We learned in July 2015 that it will not be funded. The PI for that proposal will communicate with the program officer to determine whether we should adjust the proposal and resubmit.

Instructional Best Practices

8.      Provide faculty mini-grants (1 funded in FY14) to encourage STEM faculty engagement in the scholarship of teaching and learning, and to promote the implementation of established best practices.

·       We did not provide any awards in FY15. Interest has waned, and so we did not pursue it this year.

Baseline Status

FY10: 86 students completing bachelor’s degrees in STEM fields

Interim Measures of Progress

Number of students currently enrolled in STEM programs.

·       Bachelors: Fall 2013  - 1,144

·       Bachelors: Fall 2014 – 1,154 or .8% increase

Number of currently enrolled students making satisfactory academic progress (Overall GPA of 2.0 or higher).

·       Bachelors: Fall 2013  - 1,019

·       Bachelors: Fall 2014 – 1,040 or 2% increase

Measures of Success

Outcome Metrics

1.8: Increase of 5% per year of students completing bachelor’s degrees in STEM fields (mathematics, environmental science, chemistry, biology, computer science, geology, secondary science, or mathematics education). Target of 150 by FY20.

FY 15: 119  or 5.3% increase (outcome achieved)

FY 14: 113

FY 13: 92

FY 12: 83

FY 11: 98

FY 10: 86

Lessons Learned

We have made great strides in keeping STEM students by emphasizing tutoring and peer instructional leaders. Retaining them has resulted in an increase in number of graduates of 5+% per year (since FY10).


Goal 2.1 Change institutional culture to emphasize taking full-time course loads (15 or more credits per semester) to earn degrees “on time.”

A review of institutional data indicated that many students were not enrolled in a minimum of 15 credit hours each term. In Fall 2013, 3,680 undergraduate students were taking less than 15 credit hours per term. This group had an average overall GPA of 2.81. During the same term, 1,015 were enrolled in 15 or more credit hours. The average overall GPA of that group was 3.12. A campus-wide initiative was implemented in Summer 2014 to provide new students beginning in Fall 2014 with 15 hour schedules for their first term of study. These schedules were developed in advance by academic advisors with input from the students.

We provided information on the 15-to-Finish campaign to incoming students through our orientation presentations and to faculty staff advisors through our advising training sessions throughout fall and spring semesters. 

Strategy 2.1 Change institutional culture to emphasize taking full-time course loads (15 or more credits per semester) to earn degrees “on time.”


Increase the number of students enrolled in 15 or more credits per semester.

High-impact strategy

Focus on changing the institutional culture and educating stakeholders.

Summary of the Activities

  • Used orientation survey to determine preference of course times and courses for incoming freshmen.
  • Preregistered most entering FT freshmen with a schedule of 15 or more credits (90%+).
  • Did not create videos to educate students/faculty about the importance of 15-to-Finish (GPA higher, loan debt less, fewer life emergencies) since USG already had an excellent 15-to-Finish video available on YouTube. This video was shown to students at every orientation.

Baseline Status

  • Metric 2.1: Does the institution have a well-defined program to encourage on-time graduation? It does now due to the preregistering of freshman, the use of videos to encourage full-time enrollment, and the use of program maps (see next goal).
  • Fall 2013: 1,951 students enrolled in 15 hours or more.

Interim Measures of Progress

  • Creation of videos by early Spring 2015—Not completed since an excellent quality video was already available on YouTube.
  • Increased number of students at all levels enrolled in 15 or more hours.

Measures of Success

Increased number of students enrolled in 15 hours or more—increase of 4.3% from Fall 2013 to Fall 2015. (Our goal was 10 %.)

Fall 2013: 1,951 (27.8%)

Fall 2014: 2,115 (30.7%)

Fall 2015: 2,228 (32.1%)

See Appendix I for cohort progression of earned credits.

Lessons Learned

Anecdotally, we discovered that few students change a schedule if one is given to them at orientation.  Using the orientation survey and preregistering students appears to have had a significant impact on full-time enrollment.


Goal 3.1 Provide “program maps” that plot the path to a degree and reduce choice through “choice architecture.”

While academic advisors have guided students through individual advising sessions each term, they were only provided with course requirements for the major, not with documentation that mapped the order of their classes from beginning to end.

In Fall 2014, department chairs developed program maps for each major. These maps were then published in the online catalog and shared with students in an effort to help them stay on track toward degree completion and to increase their understanding of program requirements and course sequence. In addition, the Academic Center for Excellence (ACE) developed interest-area maps (metamajor maps) for undecided students. The program-map goal was achieved by good communication with the Chairs Assembly and with the Faculty Senate as well as stringent attention to time restraints.  

Strategy 3.1 Provide “program maps” that plot the path to a degree and reduce choice through “choice architecture.”


  • Developed bachelor and associate program maps for all undergraduate degrees.
  • Developed interest-area maps for students still searching for a major.

High-impact strategy

  • Our high-impact strategy involved developing a campus campaign around the existence and use of these maps to improve progress toward graduation.

Summary of the Activities

  • Asked department chairs to develop maps for all undergraduate degrees by November 3, 2014; asked ACE to develop interest-area maps for undecided students.
  • Verified accuracy of all maps by late Spring 2015.
  • Uploaded maps into online academic catalog (2014-2015)—completed May 2015.
  • Educated faculty on how to use maps; asked departments to provide these to students.

Baseline Status

  • Metric 3.1: Have program maps been established for programs of study (must include appropriate mathematics pathways)? Yes
  • Metric 3.3: Have meta-major maps been created for the first semester (associate degree institutions) or first year (bachelor's degree institutions) for all meta-majors (must include appropriate mathematics pathways)? Yes
  • Number of program maps in Fall 2014: 0

Interim Measures of Progress

  • Meeting of deadlines—met all.
  • Emailing students and faculty about information availability in catalog—worked with chairs and faculty to communicate with students. 100% of maps completed by May 2015
  • Counseling of advisors on how to appropriately use maps when advising—worked with chairs, faculty, and professional advisors to achieve this end.

Measures of Success

  • We consider this goal 100% achieved since we accomplished and published these maps as we said we would do.
  • Increased number of students enrolled in 15 hours or more—increase of 4.3% from Fall 2013 to Fall 2015. (Our goal was 10 %.)
    • Fall 2013: 1,951 (27.8%)
    • Fall 2014: 2,115 (30.7%)
    • Fall 2015: 2,228 (32.1%)

Lessons Learned

Creating program maps for all degree programs and for five interest areas for undecided majors was labor intensive. However, now that the maps have been created, keeping them updated from year to year should be relatively easy. How much these maps affect RPG will be demonstrated in the next year or two as students and advisors all over campus begin using them.

The completion of this goal reinforces to students the importance of “15-to finish.” We consider this goal 100% achieved in that we did all of the tasks that we wanted to do. In addition, 98% of the program maps are already completed and uploaded to the 2015-2016 catalog. In addition, we are redesigning our catalog to make the maps easier to find and use.

Goal 4.2 Use predictive analytics (EAB, D2L, or Ellucian) to help identify students who are off-track and help students understand their likelihood of success in particular programs.

In an effort to boost RPG, CSU developed an advising information system that includes an early alert system and academic analytic functionality. After viewing demos of similar software and consulting with our Information Technology department, we decided to build our own Student Advising Portal (SAP) to meet our specific needs. The system complements DegreeWorks and includes student information such as demographic data, contact information, academic history, standardized test scores, and academic analytics that will assist students in choosing appropriate majors. The product was tested in the Academic Center for Excellence in Fall 2014; ACE continued beta testing in Spring 2015 and expanded it to select faculty advisors and professional staff advisers, representing all colleges within the university.

The creation of SAP has resulted in targeted, timely interventions for underclassmen, allowing advisors to create action plans and/or refer students to appropriate resources on a daily basis.

Strategy 4.2 Use predictive analytics (EAB, D2L, or Ellucian) to help identify students who are off-track and help students understand their likelihood of success in particular programs.


  • Provide intrusive advising to keep students on track to graduate.
  • Increase use of D2L Brightspace to report in-progress grades.
  • Implement software (SAP) that supplements the Academic Advising Record with diagnostic analytics and graphical displays of degree progress.
  • Challenge the extant culture that limits assessment practices to summative evaluations of student performance.

High-impact strategy

  • Identify students who may need special interventions in the semester

Summary of the Activities

  • Educated faculty to use the Early Alert System (EAS). EAS is designed to assist undergraduate students who demonstrate difficulty in their classes by making them aware of support services available and by encouraging them to use these resources to promote academic success and student retention.  100% of faculty were notified (trained) with an email explaining the process of referral.
  • Emailed faculty the link to the online referral form. Faculty members completed the referral at a secured site and students were contacted by the Academic Center for Excellence.
  • 38 students were referred in Fall 2014; 37 in Spring 2015.  
  • Met with identified at-risk students and referred them to appropriate and effective campus resources, such as Tutorial Services, Counseling, Office of Disability Services, and the Center for Career Development. Every day, ACE advisers checked their list of students with new alerts in the portal. Within 24 hours they contacted the student (via email, phone, etc., depending on the student’s preference). The adviser then referred the student to an appropriate resource or created an action plan to monitor the student and hold them accountable. The adviser then logged all activity in the notes section of the portal.  2,765 students total were served with SAP (1,515-Fall 2014, 1,250-Spring 2015).
  • Developed campus signage to increase foot traffic to Tutorial Services. Signage updated campus-wide for all buildings and services.
  • Offered more workshops for faculty to learn how to use D2L Brightspace to report in-progress grades and to understand why such communication is important. Center of Online Learning did 2,334 faculty consultations in 2014, a number that reflects multiple consultations with same faculty. COOL had 144 attend training—this is an increase of 2,041% for consultations over 2013 and an increase of 37% for training attendance.
  • Required midterm grade submissions for all core classes. This was mandated by the Provost’s Office.
  • Did not offer faculty development workshops on best assessment practices that explore multiple purposes for assessment (e.g. student self-assessment, formative assessment, summative evaluations) and strategies that enable students to identify and respond to course content deficiencies (e.g. backward design, feedback frequency). Focused attention on other activities instead.

Baseline Status

  • Percentage of credits successfully completed (A, B, C, P, S) versus attempted (A, B, C, D, F, U, W, WF. Baseline is Fall 2009: 70%. See chart below in Measures for Success.

Interim Measures of Progress

  • Increase faculty referral rate of EAS by 20% in 2014-2015. There were 48 student referrals from faculty in 2013-2014. The number of student referrals increased to 75 in 2014-2015 representing an increase of 56%.
  • Increase number of faculty using D2L Brightspace as their grade book through training and consultations. Center of Online Learning (COOL) collected data based on number of consultations and number who attend training, but not a headcount of individual faculty who use the services.  COOL did 2,334 faculty consultations in 2014, a number that reflects multiple consultations with same faculty. COOL had 144 attend training—this is an increase of 2,041% for consultations over 2013 and an increase of 37% for training attendance.
  • Increase use of assessment instrument (EvaluationKIT) for formative assessment. (Activity not performed so measure here is null.)

Measures of Success

Success is measured by student pass rate and retention. 

Percentage of credits successfully completed (A, B, C, P, S) versus attempted (A, B, C, D, F, U, W, WF) each fall semester for the past 5 years.

For freshmen, the percentage of earned to enrolled credits were:

Fall 2014: 83%

Fall 2013: 82%

Fall 2012: 74%

Fall 2011: 73%

Fall 2010: 66%

Fall 2009: 70%

Retention rate:

Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 retention rate for students seen in ACE = 85%

Fall 2014 - Fall 2015 retention rates for students seen in ACE = 79%

Overall Retention increase from FY14 to FY15 was 1.21 %.

Lessons Learned

  • Academic Center of Excellence greatly improved intrusive advising efforts through the SAP and EAS.
  • Creating an internally-developed academic analytics system such as SAP is resource intensive.

Goal 7.2 Combine remediation in English and reading.

In accordance with recommendations made by the USG Committee on Transforming Remediation, CSU revamped the remediation model for students requiring support in English and reading. Beginning Fall 2015, there were only two areas of remediation: English and math. Reading remediation as a separate course no longer exists.

Entering freshmen who scored significantly below the institution’s admission requirements in English and reading were placed in an Integrated Reading and Writing course, ENGL 0989, Foundations for English Composition. Following the successful completion of this course, students then enrolled in ENGL 1101 with a co-requisite, one-credit remedial course ENGL 0999 Support for English Composition. The goal for combining English and reading remediation was for students with significant reading and writing remedial needs to complete the gateway English composition course within two semesters, or one academic year. 

Students who required only writing remediation, or whose placement scores were not significantly below admissions requirements, were placed in the gateway course, ENGL 1101, with the co-requisite ENGL 0999. The goal for these students was successful completion of the gateway course in one semester by providing the additional support of ENGL 0999.

Creating these two new courses (ENGL 0989 and ENGL 0999) required having numerous committee meetings, offering training sessions (for advisors, enrollment services staff, and instructors), and working with UITS.

Strategy7.2 Combine remediation in English and reading.


Reduce time for completion of gateway course.

High-impact strategies

  • Combined English and Reading into one Foundations course (ENGL 0098) for students with significant English and/or reading deficiencies at the college level.
  • Provided a co-curricular course for students with minimal writing deficiencies (ENGL 0999).

Summary of the Activities

  • Developed the four-credit hour ENGL 0989 pre-requisite course content and the one-credit hour ENGL 0999 co-requisite course content.
  • Created appropriate English Placement Index (EPI) to determine students’ placement at the Foundations level or the co-curricular level.
  • Provided training for enrollment services and advisors so that students were appropriately enrolled.
  • Provided training and assistance for instructors of the new courses, especially the Foundations course.
  • Provided adequate technological support for these courses

Baseline Status

  • Metric 7.2: Number of students receiving co-requisite remediation in Fall 2015 in English (or combined English/reading): 29

Interim Measures of Progress

  • Received approval of these courses by the University Curriculum Committee.
  • Met deadlines for 2015-2016 catalog.
  • Scheduled new courses for Fall 2015.
  • Completed progression of activities on schedule and placed students in appropriate courses.

Measures of Success

  • ENGL 0989, the foundations course, was taught for the first time in Spring 2015 and we will not have the results for two more terms to see how close we come to the 60% mark.
  • We will start teaching ENGL 0999 in Fall 2015, so we cannot validate, at this time, these target metrics:
    • 60% of students assigned to ENGL 1101/0999 will exit LS and pass ENGL 1101 on the first attempt.
    • 60% of students assigned to the IRW foundations course (ENGL 0098) will successfully complete ENGL 1101 within one year of enrollment.

Lessons Learned

  • Teachers of the ITW Foundations course and of the co-requisite ENGL 1101/0999 courses are English teachers trained to teach writing; they needed to be cross-trained to teach reading as well, quite a different discipline from that of their SACS qualifications.

With this goal accomplished, we hope to significantly increase completion rates for our students by removing obstacles to entering college credit courses, while providing appropriate support for those who need remedial help.  We will have to wait to see whether we achieve the 60% success rate.

2015-2016 Goals

We derived the specifics for our 2015-2016 goals by creating an interactive website where stakeholders (faculty, students, staff, alumni, retired faculty and staff) could offer suggestions for ways to improve RPG at Columbus State.  CSU’s CCG Council then met to determine which suggestions seemed the most feasible and the most likely to positively impact RPG.

Next year we are focusing on these five goals, three of which are continued but modified from last year and two of which are new:

  • Targeting STEM Recruitment, Retention, and Completion (Strategy 1.2) CONTINUATION
  • Creating a Culture of 15-to-Finish (Strategy 2.1) CONTINUATION
  • Using Predictive Analytics for Identifying At-Risk Students (Strategy 4.2) CONTINUATION
  • Ensuring that all remediation is targeted toward supporting students in the skills they need to pass the collegiate course (Strategy 7.3) NEW
  • Expanding Completely Online Opportunities (Strategy 8.1) NEW

See Appendix II for charts detailing our 2015-2016 goals.


Successful Strategies from last year:

Targeting institution culture to increase number of students enrolled in 15 or more hours.

Success here is due to preregistering students and showing the 15-to-Finish video to students and families at orientation. There was an increase of 9.1% in the number of students enrolled in 15 or more hours.

Increasing STEM retention/recruitment/graduation by using a multipronged approach.

We saw an increase in the retention of students due to our emphasis on tutoring and peer instructional leaders and an increase in productive grades, as well as a 5.3% increase in the number of graduates. We also improved future recruitment opportunities through our STEM Honors Camp, Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program, and Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowships.

Creating SAP (Student Advising Portal) for an improved academic analytics system.

Beta tested in Fall 2014 and expanded in Spring 2015, this system has already proven invaluable to offering intrusive advising and helping at-risk students:

  • Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 retention rate for students seen in ACE = 85%
  • Fall 2014 - Fall 2015 retention rates for students seen in ACE = 79%

Overall retention increase from FY14 to FY15 was 1.21 %.

Expanding the Early Alert System to target at-risk students.

Numbers of students referred has dramatically increased from just a few each semester to approximately 38 per semester.

Transforming the catalog to include program maps for all undergraduate degrees.

We are confident that these maps will positively impact RPG in the future. In addition, interest-area metamajor maps were developed for entering freshmen who are having difficulty deciding on a major.  We completed 100% of the maps in accomplishing this goal.

Creating a Discussion Board requesting suggestions for improving RPG at CSU. 

We derived the specifics for our 2015-2016 goals by creating an interactive website ( where 50+ stakeholders (faculty, students, staff, alumni, retired faculty and staff) offered suggestions for ways to improve RPG at Columbus State.  CSU’s CCG Council then met to determine which ideas seemed the most feasible and the most likely to positively impact RPG.

Least Effective Strategies from last year:

All strategies tried seem to be effective but a couple of times we dropped the ball and did not do what we said we would do. Lesson learned: When proposing something, we also need to assign every activity to a specific department, program, or person.

Adjustments to Completion Strategies compared to years past:

See Appendix II for detailed charts for our 2015-2016 Goals.

The main difference over the past three years is that we have moved from a model which casts a wide net to a model that strategically targets certain populations in need of assistance/attention or specific changes that are likely to improve RPG. This has been accomplished by reducing the number of projects involved and focusing on a limited number of projects that will make a bigger impact. Focusing our resources and energies on five areas will increase the likelihood of success and permanent value to the institution.

Suggestion for improving this reporting form:

While the Narrative is primarily about assessing last year’s plan, we propose that there be a part specifically for announcing next year’s plan. CSU suggests that next year’s plan be summarized at the end of part 2 (or in part 3) and detailed in an appendix (as presented in this report). This allows the narrative to serve as an assessment of the previous year’s plan as well as a projection of the specific goals to be accomplished (end of part 2 and the appendix).