LSSU and NCA logo

LSSU and NCA logoThis page presents historical information from the year 2000 related to LSSU Institutional Accreditation Self Study.


Executive Summary of the Self-Study Report:

This is an executive summary of Lake Superior State University’s Self-Study Report that has been submitted to the North Central Association (NCA) for their review. More than 100 trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, students, and community members examined the University and prepared the Self-Study Report. The campus community was provided with several opportunities to comment on the self-study process and on drafts of the Self-Study Report during 1999 and 2000.

The self-study process was viewed not only as a requirement of the re-accreditation process, but also as an opportunity for introspection. It was an opportunity to evaluate performance, to review strengths, and to ascertain how well those strengths support the University’s mission. It also provided a forum to identify areas of potential improvement and to crystallize, through oral and written articulation, issues surrounding the future directions of the University.

From February 5-7, 2001, the NCA Site Evaluation Team will be on campus to examine Lake Superior State University’s request for continuing accreditation. The Team members will visit with faculty, staff, students, and others about the progress the University has made since1991, the current state of the University in relation to NCA criteria, and the future plans for the University.

The full Self-Study Report is available for review in the Kenneth J. Shouldice Library, in each department, and on the University’s common “O” drive. It provides a history of the University, contains a response to the 1991 NCA Team report and other NCA visits, outlines the self-study findings in relation to the NCA requirements and criteria, and looks to the future.

The resulting self-study document stands as evidence of the effectiveness of the self-study process and affords Lake Superior State University the opportunity to demonstrate, both to itself and to its external examiners, the quality and dedication with which the University has pursued its goals in the past decade. And, perhaps most importantly, it will serve as an invaluable starting point for continued planning as the University strives for excellence in the next decade.

Executive Summary of the Self-Study Report: Introduction

Lake Superior State University (LSSU) has renewed its accreditation with the North Central Association (NCA) from 1968 to 2000 and is again requesting re-accreditation for another ten-year period. Through the Self-Study Report, the University believes that it has presented strong patterns of evidence indicating that it meets all NCA accreditation criteria and requirements.

Overview and Historical Perspective

Lake Superior State University is situated at the northeastern tip of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, overlooking the City of Sault Ste. Marie (population 16,000). One of the state’s 15 public universities, it is primarily a baccalaureate degree-granting institution. By design the smallest of the state-supported institutions of higher learning, LSSU affords its 3,717 annually-enrolled students an opportunity to study in a unique international environment rich in beauty and historical significance.Lake Superior State University was established in 1946 as a branch campus of the Michigan College of Mining and Technology (now Michigan Technological University) and was accredited by the NCA from 1946 to 1968 as part of the parent institution. The University was established on the site of Fort Brady, a decommissioned Army post, to address the educational needs of returning World War II veterans. The remaining Fort structures with their unique architecture are registered today as national historic buildings. During the past 54 years, enrollment has grown from 227 to over 3,000.

Significant Developments Since 1991

The self-study has provided the University with a valuable opportunity to appreciate the changes made since 1991. The following is a sample of those developments.Strategic Planning. In 1992, President Robert Arbuckle initiated a major strategic planning effort. This effort resulted in the 1994 Strategic Plan document and the institutionalization of a yearly process to keep the plan updated and implemented.Mission. In the ongoing task of assessing and defining its goals, the University, through the strategic planning process which involved the input of over 300 persons, revised the Mission Statement to more clearly express and reflect these goals. The Board of Trustees adopted the present Mission Statement on May 13, 1994.Academic. (1) Various programs have received accreditation from the following external bodies: National League for Nursing, the Council on Medical Education and Hospitals of the American Medical Association, Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, and the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress. (2) A $1.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education was received to improve the academic success of the University’s at-risk students. (3) The Great Lakes Academy was established to help the University meet its state-mandated community college role. (4) Ten faculty positions have been added in response to enrollment growth in selected disciplines. (5) The implementation of the Severance Incentive Plan in 2000 and 2001 will provide the University with an opportunity for academic revitalization and the ability to better match faculty with student enrollment preferences. (6) In 1997, based on input from faculty, the president, vice presidents, and approved by the Board of Trustees, four colleges were established-College of Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences; College of Engineering, Mathematics, and Business; College of Natural and Health Sciences; and the University College (now the Great Lakes Academy). In 1999, to provide a more prominent focus on the University’s business programs, Business was separated from the College of Engineering and Mathematics to form its own College of Business and Economics. (7) A formalization of the program review process was initiated in the fall of 1999. It is designed to facilitate continuous improvement and is an opportunity to gather data that documents program accomplishments, to reflect on those accomplishments, and to plan for the future.Facilities Additions and Renovations. The University engaged in a massive remodeling and building program in the 1990s that included: (1) A $6 million addition to the Cisler Student and Conference Center, providing a larger and more modern food service facility. (2) A $6.1 million renovation to the existing Norris Center Ice Arena. (3) A $12 million renovation and addition to the Kenneth J. Shouldice Library. (4) A $3 million new Student Activity Center. (5) A $23 million renovation and addition to the Crawford Hall of Science. (6) State approval for a $15.3 million Arts Classroom Building. Design work is underway for an anticipated opening in 2002.

Response to 1991 Concerns

The 1991 NCA site team identified seven areas of concern in addition to concerns associated with the Master of Business Administration program. (Response to concerns resulting from the MBA program focused visits of 1994 and 1998 are highlighted at the end of this section.) The University addressed all of these concerns during the past decade and made substantial progress in all areas.

  • Concern: A downturn in the Michigan economy would affect a small institution such as LSSU.Progress: Since 1991, the University has made a number of changes which provide for a margin of protection against changing economic conditions. (1) A debt reduction plan was implemented in 1992-93 that had a minimal impact on the academic mission of the University. (2) A new budgeting process was implemented that allows for better use of resources. (3) Foundation and grant activities have increased. (4) Tuition and fees have increased. (5) An enrollment management process was established and involves the entire University community. (6) State support for LSSU has been significant in the 1990s.
  • Concern: The University needs to be more diligent in its planning, in the communication of that planning, and in involving students, faculty, and administrative unit heads in those efforts.Progress: Since 1991, the University has developed a variety of procedures to enhance planning and to improve communications, both internally and externally. (1) In 1993 and 1994, constituents of the University and community members (over 300 persons) developed a Strategic Plan for the University. Extensive meetings held over the two-year period resulted in the development of a vision statement, a mission statement, and goals. Each goal was supported by specific objectives and action plans to implement the objectives. Every year the implementation of the Strategic Plan is evaluated relative to the achievement of the goals. (2) A new budgeting process was implemented that allows for better use of resources as well as better communication and participation. The budget is linked directly to the Strategic Plan. (3) All units of the University are now engaged in assessment. (4) The University has renewed its commitment to its state-mandated community college role with the creation of the Great Lakes Academy.
  • Concern: There are significant space problems in the library.Progress: In the fall of 1997, a newly renovated and expanded Kenneth J. Shouldice Library was formally opened. The $12 million project increased space by 35,000 square feet.
  • Concern: Several of the educational programs are dependent on a single faculty member.Progress: The University has added 10 faculty positions since 1992. These positions have been added in response to enrollment growth in selected disciplines. One- and two-person departments such as Geology, Computer Science, and Spanish have been augmented. Within the College of Business and Economics, several positions at regional centers were moved from part-time to full-time status.
  • Concern: A broad range of programs is offered by a small faculty. As a result, there is little faculty depth in any disciplinary area.Progress: Additional faculty have been added since 1992, and program revisions have occurred to address this issue.
  • Concern: The engineering technology enrollment is declining and its programs have long been an important part of the educational tradition of the University.Progress: In 1994, the College of Engineering and Mathematics began an extensive self-study of the technical and curricular needs with respect to the changing environment for engineering and engineering technology on statewide, national, and global scales. The final self-study report contained three recommendations for restructuring the program and involved the implementation of certificate and associate programs in technology and baccalaureate programs in engineering technology and engineering. In addition, potential minority and female students have been sought by instituting special summer programs for Native American and female students. Engineering has received National Science Foundation funding for the implementation of introductory courses designed to attract students to engineering.
  • Concern: There are a number of areas where the institution has made moves to improve its situation, yet there is a concern that these initiatives may lack sufficient staff and financial support to continue their implementation. A plan with a timetable and a projected budget would help to alleviate many of the communication problems and criticism currently being leveled.Progress: Since 1991, the University has greatly expanded its system of budgetary and academic planning and implementation. The University has used these processes to creatively respond to the needs of its students and the community by developing new, appropriate programs such as Teacher Education and by modifying existing programs to meet current needs. The University has greatly improved the physical plant for student residences, classrooms, and library resources, and at the same time, improved the educational and social resources represented by teaching, counseling, financial access, and other support services. Again, strategic planning and budget processes address this issue.
  • Response to the 1994 and 1998 Focus Visits Regarding the Master of Business Administration and Master of Public Administration Programs

    The NCA teams in 1991, 1994, and 1998 identified areas of concern with the University’s Master of Business Administration program. One of the concerns was that the faculty in the Department of Business did not have oversight of the program. Another concern was the lack of doctorally-qualified business faculty teaching in the program. In response, the University conducted an extensive self-evaluation in which future roles of the University as a graduate and undergraduate institution were reconsidered. A task force was appointed, and it delivered its final report in April 1999. The University believed it would be detrimental to the undergraduate programs to provide additional resources to correct the remaining deficiencies. The faculty in Business and Economics and the Board of Trustees voted to discontinue the program and to not accept new students after the fall 1999 semester.The 1998 focused visit report also indicated that reviewers thought that the Master of Public Administration program suffered from some of the same shortcomings as the MBA program-overloads for faculty, lack of doctorally-qualified faculty, and lack of an assessment plan. In compliance with the recommendations of the report, the University began a teach-out in May 1998 for the 72 MPA program students.


    Executive Summary of the Self-Study Report:
    2000 Self-Study Process

    In the fall of 1998 and the spring of 1999, President Robert Arbuckle established the membership of the self-study steering committee and invited volunteers to serve on five subcommittees arranged around the five criteria for accreditation. The steering committee and the five subcommittees were comprised of trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, students, and community representatives.

    During 1999 and 2000, the subcommittees collected, compiled, and reviewed information related to their assigned areas. Their work culminated in written reports to the steering committee. Initial drafts of the reports were presented to the campus community at six campus-wide meetings held during the 1999-2000 academic year. Feedback from the sessions was incorporated into the Self-Study Report and reviewed by the steering committee and the entire campus community.

    The steering committee was charged with the following primary tasks: (1) To coordinate implementation of the Self-Study Plan. (2) To oversee the preparation of the Self-Study Report. (3) To provide assurance that the patterns of evidence provided demonstrate that Lake Superior State University has met the 24 general institutional requirements, the five criteria for accreditation, and the concerns set forth in the last self-study process. (4) To ensure that the University has fairly examined any difficult or controversial issues and self-reported concerns uncovered by self-examination.

    NCA Self-Study Steering Committee
    Dr. Robert Arbuckle,
    Ms. Kay Floyd,
    Self-Study Report Editor,
    Director, Grants/Contracts
    Dr. Dennis Merkel,
    Coordinator/Criterion 3 Chair,
    Assoc. Prof. of Biology
    Mr. Thomas Bugbee,
    Vice President for Student Affairs
    Mr. James Madden,
    Criterion 4 Chair,
    Prof. of Criminal Justice
    Dr. Susan Ratwik,
    Prof. of Psychology
    Dr. George Denger,
    Criterion 1 Chair,
    Asst. Prof. of Speech
    Dr. Donald McCrimmon,
    Steering Committee Chair,
    Executive Vice President & Provost
    Mr. Scott Smart,
    Vice President for Business & Financial Operations
    Dr. Polly Fields,
    Criterion 2 Chair,
    Assoc. Prof. of English
    Ms. Debra McPherson,
    Faculty Assoc. President,
    Asst. Prof. of Rec. Studies
    Ms. Heidi Witucki,
    Criterion 5 Chair,
    Upward Bound Director
    Criterion 1:
    Clear & Publicly Stated Purpose
    Criterion 2:
    Criterion 3:
    Accomplishing its Purpose
    Criterion 4:
    Continue to Accomplish
    Criterion 5:
    Demonstrates Integrity
    Coates, Tom
    Denger, G. (C)
    Fabbri, Tony
    Gadzinski, Eric
    King, Jeff
    LaVoy, John
    Marinoni, Ann
    Miller, Cary
    Moody, James
    Payment, D.
    Shibley, John
    Yanni, Steve
    Back, Richard
    Bawks, Judy
    Becker, Bill
    Brown, Meg
    Bugbee, Tom
    Childs, Sally
    DePlonty, S.
    Faust, Deb
    Fields, P. (C)
    Freedman, Lee
    Hendrickson, J.
    Hronek, B.
    Madden, Jim
    Marinoni, Ann
    Merkel, Cindy
    Michels, Fred
    Pink, Tom
    Rye, Colleen
    Rye, George
    Smart, Scott
    Sobeck, A.
    Stai, Deb
    Swanson, S.
    Tadgerson, A.
    Tucker, H.
    White, B.
    Willobee, M.
    Albrough, K.
    Atkinson, Steve
    Brown, Meg
    Camp, Susan
    Childs, Sally
    DePlonty, S.
    Freedman, Lee
    Gordier, Paige
    Hayward, Pam
    LaVoy, John
    Madden, Jim
    McCrimmon, D.
    Merkel, D. (C)
    Rynberg, Nina
    Schuemann, K.
    Stanaway, J.
    Sutton, Trent
    Witucki, Heidi
    Adams, Ray
    Besteman, Paul
    Comer, Lee
    Faust, Deb
    Fenlon, Paul
    LeGreve, N.
    Madden, J. (C)
    Manor, Robbin
    McPherson, D.
    Merkel, Dennis
    Scheelk, R.
    Schuemann, K.
    Smith, ScottSmith, Tom
    Weber, Brenda
    Weiss, Richard
    Back, Richard
    Blashill, Jim
    Castner, Dave
    Crawford, Bill
    Fitzpatrick, S.
    Jastorff, Mark
    Pateman, J.
    Pavloski, Sherri
    Rye, Colleen
    Smith, Scott
    White, Beverly
    Witucki, H. (C)

    Recommendations and action plans developed as a result of the self-study process will be incorporated into the University’s next strategic planning cycle for 2001-2002.

    Strengths and Challenges

    The following are the dominant strengths and challenges that have emerged from the self-study process. They are arranged according to the University’s four goals.

  • UNIVERSITY GOAL I: To develop and provide academic programs in the liberal arts and in technical and professional education which demonstrate excellence and relevance for the students served by the University.
      • Goal I Strengths:
    • Human Resources. LSSU has always been able to point with pride to its faculty and staff, who have demonstrated significant dedication to the University and its primary mission of educating and serving the student body.
    • Collaborative Efforts. LSSU continually works on various initiatives with other universities, including two institutions in Ontario, Canada, as well as with local school districts. The undergraduate research initiative involves faculty and students in a variety of areas such as environmental science, Great Lakes studies, criminal justice, geology, and engineering.
    • Facilities. Since 1992, over $60 million has been invested in the upgrading of academic and non-academic facilities for the 21st century. The University had more upgrades to its physical plant in the 1990s than any other public university in Michigan.
    • Academic Programs. The strength of the University’s academic programs has always been an area of pride at LSSU. Evaluations of several programs by external accrediting agencies validate the University’s perception of excellence.
    • Formalization of Program Review Process. The Provost’s Council established an annual academic program review process in the fall of 1999. The main purpose of the University’s review process is to improve student learning. The process is designed to facilitate continuous improvement and is viewed as an opportunity to gather data that documents program accomplishments, to reflect on these accomplishments, and to plan for future directions of the program.Goal I Challenges:
    • Human Resources. As the smallest of the state supported universities, LSSU must create more flexibility, an increased ability to respond to new initiatives, and the empowerment to reallocate resources to areas of greatest need. To continue to thrive, the University must be willing and able to move faculty and staff resources from areas of lesser need to areas of greater need. Attrition, term contracts, and retirement can aid in the short-to-intermediate range. The long-term goal requires the above and a focusing of the University’s mission.
    • Assessment. As the assessment effort continues to grow, personnel resources will be stretched thinner. Workshops and staff are necessary to assist many faculty to find the richness and uses of internal, external, and course assessment efforts. Much has been done, but more is needed. Contractual changes will be necessary, and questions of use by the administration must be addressed. Cost of efforts and instruments must continue to be assessed in light of the University’s mission, resources, and ability to excel.
  • UNIVERSITY GOAL II: To provide services and programming for students which will complement their educational experiences and prepare them to live and work in the 21st century.
      • Goal II Strengths:
    • Great Lakes Academy. The development of the Great Lakes Academy has provided a focal point for student support and academic enhancement for a significant portion of the student body. It has also facilitated the University’s state-mandated community college mission. ¨ Fletcher Student Center Reorganization. A one-stop student services structure has been adopted and implemented. This has improved student services and helps to reinforce the University’s personal approach to education. A new admissions strategic plan has been developed and is being implemented.
    • Student Life. The University has a highly involved residence life staff. There are many clubs and Greek organizations with concomitant involvement on campus. The new Student Activity Center has been built and was partially funded by a self-imposed student activity fee. The facility has generated significant student use and acceptance. The University has one of the largest intramural programs in the Midwest, with over 2,100 students participating on an annual basis.
    • Continuing Education. In 1998-99, Continuing Education enrollment grew by 11 percent. This has increased the effectiveness and visibility in those regional center communities, as well as increased the University’s ability to provide even better student support services to its off-campus students. New initiatives have been developed with Admissions to promote the University through the regional centers.
    • Technology. The Integrated Technology Strategy and the technology fee approved by the Board of Trustees have gone a long way to not only continue technological upgrading and expansion, but to ensure a source of funding for continued updating of the University’s technology efforts.Goal II Challenges:
    • Student Computer Laboratory and Access. The availability of computer laboratory time and instructional time in laboratories is a scheduling challenge. Program software is a continuing problem that the University is trying to address. Steps have been taken to correct this by opening and then expanding the computer laboratory/classroom in the Norris Center. Site licensing and expansion of usable copies of Statistical Packages for the Social Sciences (SPSS) have eliminated most problems.
    • Distance Education. The support services both on campus and at the regional centers must be constantly assessed. The financial and technological components must be examined in light of utilization, alternatives, and delivery effectiveness. Other types of delivery systems may prove to be more advantageous than compressed and digital interactive television delivery modality. The University must invest in the next technology and know when to phase out or by-pass other types of remote delivery systems. The University utilized three outside consultants to help with this process and determination. The environmental scan helped to provide input for the continuing improvement of information technology on the campus and informed the current strategic planning for technology process.
  • UNIVERSITY GOAL III: To offer a holistic, caring, and supportive environment for all learners.
      • Goal III Strengths:
    • Facilities and Upgrades. The physical plant has been improved greatly in the 1990s to meet the current and future needs of the students and the community. Much of this has been made possible by state support, private fundraising, and by the Board of Trustees who require that 8.8 percent of all tuition be reserved for the physical plant.
    • Housing. The University offers a wide range of on-campus housing. Housing surveys have led to changes and enhancement of the housing and residential life program. The units have been renovated, upgraded, and wired for computer access.Goal III Challenges:
    • Student Satisfaction. The perennial complaints concerning parking, housing, and snow-related problems will not go away. As students become more aware of their power as consumers and citizens, they will have constantly rising expectations. Whether these problems are real or perceived, they must be continually addressed in an open and timely manner, involving all the campus community. A potentially more serious problem is that of student advising. Senior exit interviews have identified this as a problem area. The President’s Special Committee on Freshman Advising is addressing this problem.
    • Child Development Center. Students, faculty, and staff are requesting expansion of the Child Development Center’s scope and hours of operation. Removing this potential barrier, that some student-parents face, increases the chances that they will persist and graduate. A larger facility for the center has been identified. The University is awaiting a decision of the present owners.
    • Housing. While the variety of campus housing, as well as the quality, has increased, the demand has not. The oversupply of affordable off-campus housing has continued to increase. Further actions are necessary to make campus housing more desirable and more cost effective.
  • UNIVERSITY GOAL IV: To enhance the University’s efficiency and effectiveness in order to help fulfill its vision and mission.
      • Goal IV Strengths:
    • Foundation and Alumni Efforts. Existing annual programs have been successful, as have the other friend- and fundraising activities. Foundation gifts have increased over 200 percent since 1998. Annual support now exceeds $2 million. In the first 18 months of the $11 million capital campaign, over $6 million has been raised. The telemarketing function is becoming more viable, as is volunteer support. New fundraising programs have been introduced that will provide for greater support for the University now and in the future.
    • Lobbying, State, and Local Relations. State funding has been very favorable in most areas due to effective personnel and favorable state economic conditions. The Governor and the State Legislature have demonstrated their commitment to higher education. Michigan’s system of higher education is one of the most respected in the nation. In general, the economic climate in the State of Michigan is very strong and has resulted in favorable funding for higher education.
    • Grants. Recognizing the need for an organized grants system, as well as to facilitate an increase in the quality and quantity of proposal submissions, the President established the Office of Grants and Contracts in 1997. Over the past ten years, revenue from grants and contracts has been steadily increasing. During 1998-99, $3.5 million was received through grants and contracts-the highest in the University’s history. This represents a 61 percent increase since 1991-92. A federal facilities and administrative cost rate (indirect cost rate) was negotiated and established in 1999-the first in the University’s history. The rate allows the University to recover indirect costs incurred as a result of grants received.Goal IV Challenges:
    • Enrollment. A downturn in the exchange rate on Canadian funds, as well as socio-economic changes in Ontario, have adversely affected the University’s Canadian enrollment. In 1991, 24 percent of enrollment consisted of Canadian learners. This has fallen to 15 percent. In addition, overall enrollment must increase to remain cost effective. The downturn in first-time-in-college students and transfer students from Canada must be addressed by providing avenues for exchange rate scholarships or increasing the market share of U.S. students. Further, the phase-out of the two graduate programs resulted in a decline of over 400 students. These students must be replaced. Strategies are being implemented to accomplish this.
    • Regional Centers and Interactive Television. The fall 1999 regional center enrollment made up seven percent of the University’s overall headcount. New programs that take advantage of distance education technology need to be evaluated for potential benefit and enrollment growth. The use of interactive television for course delivery needs to continue to be evaluated for cost effectiveness and student satisfaction. Web-based delivery is currently being explored.
    • Term Limitations. As Michigan has enacted term limitations for state elected officials, the legislative funding process will be constantly changing. Rural areas like this region will be disadvantaged because seniority will not be a major factor in committee membership. It will be more important now and in the future to maintain positive relationships with key legislative staff members.
    • Internal Communications. LSSU has endeavored to involve all segments of the University in its decision-making matrix. As the University relies more on electronic transfer of information and as personnel changes due to attrition, retirement, or reallocation of budget lines, the University must be wary of instrumental communication as opposed to personal information exchange. Improvements in personal communication included well-attended faculty forums and self-study sessions. The University’s Vision and Mission Statements express the University’s values. These are heavily laden in personal interactions and caring for each other and for students.
    • Technology. While the University has a technology plan and a funding source, it must always be vigilant to assure proper choices. In the rapidly changing world of technologies, dead ends and lack of interfacing must be avoided. The University must continue to have a holistic view of how the institution is affected by each addition or deletion. The University must also be cognizant that technology is a means to an end-more effective student service and learning. The new strategic planning for technology is addressing these issues.
  • NCA Criteria for Accreditation

    Evidence that the University has met the five criteria for accreditation is presented in detail within the Self-Study Report and is summarized below.

    NCA Criterion 1: The institution has clear and publicly stated purposes consistent with its mission and appropriate to an institution of higher education.

    LSSU’s clear and publicly stated purposes are grounded in an exercise of constitutional authority by the State Legislature, through the Board and the Administration. The Mission Statement is linked to the day-to-day operations of the University by goals, objectives, and annual action plans. Through an annual cycle of action plans, budget hearings, and implementation reports, expenditures and human effort are tied to the purposes of the University. The University publicizes its purposes through a variety of venues. The University meets Criterion 1.

    NCA Criterion 2: The institution has effectively organized the human, financial, and physical resources necessary to accomplish its purposes.

    LSSU effectively organizes its human, financial, and physical resources. The decision-making, administrative, and communications structures and processes are well understood and appropriately used. The University’s human resources are appropriate for its purposes, and its economic strength adequately supports programs and activities. The University’s means of obtaining income and its distribution of human, financial, and physical resources reflect values consistent with those widely held by institutions of higher education. The University meets Criterion 2.

    NCA Criterion 3: The institution is accomplishing its educational and other purposes.

    LSSU’s educational programs are appropriate to an institution of higher education with assessment of appropriate student academic achievement present. Effective teaching is evident. Ongoing support is in place for professional development for faculty and staff. The University’s student services support the University’s purpose. Staff and faculty service contributes to the University’s effectiveness, and service to the citizens of the region and beyond is provided. The University meets Criterion 3.

    NCA Criterion 4: The institution can continue to accomplish its purposes and strengthen its educational effectiveness.

    LSSU is well positioned to carry out its mission in this new decade and beyond. It has instituted and utilized an internal planning process with feedback loops. Collaboration among the various constituencies of the University community has been vastly improved. Facility needs have been addressed with an eye to the future. More budgetary responsibility has been enacted with short, intermediate, and long-term plans being implemented and evaluated. The University has tried to view its strengths and challenges with realism. The University anticipates continued progress toward fulfilling its goals. The University meets Criterion 4.

    NCA Criterion 5: The institution demonstrates integrity in its practices and relationships.

    LSSU’s written documents describe institutional relationships and include appropriate grievance procedures. Policies and practices exist for the resolution of internal disputes and for equity of treatment, non-discrimination, affirmative action, and other means of enhancing access to education and the building of a diverse educational community. The University’s publications, statements, and advertising accurately and fairly describe the University, its operations, and its programs. The University’s relationships with other institutions of higher education are conducted ethically and responsibly and appropriate support exists for resources shared with other institutions. Policies and procedures are in place regarding institutional relationships with and responsibility for intercollegiate athletics, student associations, and related business enterprises. Oversight processes exist for monitoring contractual arrangements with government, industry, and other organizations. The University meets Criterion 5.

    Executive Summary of the Self-Study Report:

    Lake Superior State University is requesting re-accreditation for another ten-year period. The University believes that it has presented strong patterns of evidence indicating that it meets all accreditation criteria, and it has demonstrated fulfillment of all requirements.

    NCA Self-Study Plan (Fall 1999)

    Table of ContentsNCA Steering Committee Membership
    Steering Committee Duties
    Goals for the Self-Study Process
    Table of Contents for Self-Study Report
    Comprehensive Evaluation Process
    Self-Study Calendar and TimetableNCA Steering Committee Membership (1999-2000)Dr. Robert Arbuckle President
    Mr. Thomas Bugbee Vice President for Student Programs and Services
    Dr. George Denger Criterion One Chair, Assistant Professor of Speech
    Dr. Polly Fields Criterion Two Chair, Associate Professor of English
    Ms. Kay Floyd Self-Study Report Editor, Director of Grants and Contracts
    Mr. James Madden Criterion Four Chair, Professor of Criminal Justice
    Dr. Donald McCrimmon Acting Executive Vice President and Provost, Committee Chair
    Ms. Debra McPherson Faculty Association President
    Dr. Dennis Merkel Coordinator and Criterion Three Chair, Special Assistant to the Provost, Associate Professor of Biology
    Dr. Susan Ratwik Professor of Psychology
    Mr. Scott Smart Acting Vice President for Business and Financial Operations
    Ms. Heidi Witucki Criterion Five Chair, Upward Bound DirectorSteering Committee DutiesThe primary tasks of the Steering Committee are:

    To coordinate implementation of the Self-Study Plan

    1. To oversee the preparation of the Self-Study Report
    2. To provide assurance that the patterns of evidence provided demonstrate that Lake Superior State University has met:
      1. the 24 General Institutional Requirements (GIR)
      2. the five Criteria for Accreditation; and
      3. the concerns set forth in the last self-study process
    3. To ensure that the University has fairly examined any difficult or controversial issues and self-reported concerns uncovered by self-examination

    Goals for the Self-Study Process

    Goal 1 Lake Superior State University will demonstrate that the University satisfies the five criteria and 24 general institutional requirements for reaccreditation by North Central Association for Colleges and Schools. Goal 2 The self-study process will involve a broad representation of the University community. Goal 3 The self-study process will foster openness among University constituents, enhance information sharing, and stimulate dialogue about present concerns and future directions. Goal 4 The recommendations and action plans developed, as a result of the self-study process, will be incorporated into the University’s next strategic plan update.Table of Contents for the Self-Study Report


    A. Lake Superior State University: Past and Present B. Accreditation History C. Purposes of the Self-Study Report D. Self-Study Report E. Self-Study Process F. Response to NCA Team Reports (1991, 1994, 1998) and Response to Staff Analysis of Progress Reports G. Significant Developments Since 1990-91 Chapter 1–Criterion One: Clear and Publicly Stated Purpose A. Introduction B. Mission and Vision Statements C. Goals D. Operational Significance of the Mission and Goals E. National and Regional Recognition of University’s Commitment to Higher Education F. Summary Strengths and Challenges Chapter 2–Criterion Two: Effectively Organized Resources A. Introduction B. Organization and Governance C. Human Resources: Faculty, Staff, and Students D. Financial Resources E. Physical Resources F. Information Technology & Resources G. Business/Financial Operations Resources H. Student Services Resources I. Learning Center Resources J. Summary Strengths and Challenges Chapter 3–Criterion Three: Accomplishing Educational and Other Purposes A. Introduction B. Academic Programs

    1. General Education
    2. Masters in Business Administration
    3. Masters in Public Administration
    4. Academic Delivery—Continuing Education, Distance Education

    C. Academic Colleges and Schools 1. College of Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences a. School of Criminal Justice, Fire Science, and Education b. School of English and Speech c. School of History and Humanities d. School of Social Sciences 2. College of Business and Economics 3. College of Engineering and Mathematics a. School of Engineering and Technology b. School of Mathematics and Computer Science 4. College of Natural and Health Sciences a. School of Natural Sciences b. School of Nursing and Health Sciences 5. University College D. Assessment

    1. Introduction
    2. History
    3. Assessment of General Education
    4. Assessment of the University Environment

    E. Student and Faculty Academic Services F. Student Support Services G. Service to Community and Region

    1. Faculty and Staff Participation
    2. Outreach and Extension

    H. Summary Strengths and Challenges Chapter 4–Criterion Four: Continue to Accomplish Purposes A. Introduction B. Strategic Planning Process C. Impact of Self-Study Process D. Issues for the Next Decade and the New Millennium E. Summary Strengths and Challenges Chapter 5–Criterion 5: Demonstrate Integrity in Practices and Relationships A. Introduction B. University Publications C. Policies and Practices for Resolution of Internal Disputes D. Policies and Practices for Equitable Treatment E. Institutional Publications, Statements, and Advertising F. Relationships with Other Institutions of Higher Education G. Appropriate Support for Shared Resources H. Policies and Procedures Regarding Institutional Relationships and Responsibility I. Oversight Processes for Monitoring Contractual Arrangements with Government, Industry, and Other Organizations J. Summary Strengths and Challenges Chapter 6–Summary and Request for Continued AccreditationA. Basic Institutional Data Forms B. General Institutional Requirements C. List of Items Available in Resource Room D. Self-Study Subcommittees
    E. University Committees

    Steering Committee

    Members of the Steering Committee:Robert Arbuckle, Bill Becker, Tom Bugbee, Carol Campagna, George Denger, Polly Fields, Kay Floyd, Kari Jastorff, Jim Madden, Dennis Merkel, Sue Ratwik, David Toppen, Heidi Witucki

    The Chair of the Steering Committee is Dr. David Toppen, ext. 2211.

    Criterion 1: Clear and Publicly Stated Purpose

    Members of Criterion 1 Subcommittee:Tom Coates, Bill Crawford, George Denger, Tony Fabbri, Eric Gadzinski, Cheri Hoornstra, Daretha Huntz, Mark Jastorff, Jeff King, John LaVoy, Leisa Mansfield, Ann Marinoni, Cary Miller, James Moody, Donna Payment, Annette Ryckman, Shirley Schoenemann, John Shibley, Steve Yanni.

    The Chair of the subcommittee is Dr. George Denger, ext. 2330.

    Criterion 2: Effectively Organized Resources

    Members of Criterion 2 Subcommittee:Kathy Albrough, Richard Back, Judy Bawks, Bill Becker, Meg Brown, Sally Childs, Stella DePlonty, Deb Faust, Polly Fields, Lee Freedman, Judy Hendrickson, Beth Hronek, Jim Madden, Ann Marinoni, Cindy Merkel, Fred Michels, Tom Pink, Colleen Rye, George Rye, Kahler Schuemann, Scott Smart, Deb Stai, Stacey Swanson, Aaron Tadgerson, Houston Tucker, Beverly White.

    The Chair of the subcommittee is Dr. Polly Fields, ext. 2179

    Criterion 3: Accomplishing its Purpose

    Members of the Criterion 3 Subcommittee:Kathy Albrough, Steve Atkinson, Meg Brown, Susan Camp, Sally Childs, Stella DePlonty, Polly Fields, Lee Freedman, Eric Gadzinski, Paige Gordier, Pam Hayward, John LaVoy, Jim Madden, Don McCrimmon, Dennis Merkel, Nina Rynberg, Jessica Stanaway, Trent Sutton, Heidi Witucki

    The Chair of the Subcommittee is Dr. Dennis Merkel, ext. 2152.

    Criterion 4: Continue to Accomplish its Purpose

    Members of the Criterion 4 Subcommittee:Ray Adams, Paul Besteman, Lee Comer, Deb Faust, Paul Fenlon, Nancy LeGreve, Jim Madden, Robbin Manor, Deb McPherson, Dennis Merkel, Rebecca Scheelk, Kahler Schuemann, Scott Smith, Tom Smith

    The Chair of the Subcommittee is James Madden, ext. 2173

    Criterion 5: Demonstrates Integrity in its Practices

    Members of the Criterion 5 Subcommittee:Richard Back, Jim Blashill, Dave Castner, Bill Crawford, Susan Fitzpatrick, Mark Jastorff, Jacquey Pateman, Sherri Pavloski, Colleen Rye, Scott Smith, Beverly White, Heidi Witucki

    The Chair of the Subcommittee is Heidi Witucki, ext. 2186.