UNH Faculty Senate

Motion on the Academic and Strategic Plans


on the Academic and Strategic Plans


1.  Motion presenter:   Michael Ferber

2.  Date of Faculty Senate discussion:   11/14/2011 and 11/28/2011

3.  Rationale:

Questions have arisen as to the status of the Academic Plan in the light of the more recent Strategic Plan.  The original version of the “Academic Plan for the Future of the University of New Hampshire”  bore the dates “2003 – 2008,” while “The University of New Hampshire in 2020:  Breaking Silos, Transforming Lives, Reimagining the University” was promulgated in 2009.  Thus it has seemed on the face of it that the later plan has replaced the earlier one.  While the later plan was arrived at through wide consultation, with members of the Faculty Senate among many others, that plan was not submitted for formal endorsement by the senate, as the Academic Plan had been.  While concerns as to whether “shared governance” has been bypassed are reasonable, the Academic Affairs Committee believes that nothing in the Strategic Plan itself cancels or alters any section of the Academic Plan.  They are different sorts of plans and may co-exist amicably.  The Strategic Plan explicitly refers to the core categories of the Academic Plan and adds:  “This plan thus builds on and reinforces the central themes of UNH’s existing Academic Plan” (page 2).  It is the opinion of the provost that, despite the apparent “sunset” provision implied by the dates, the Academic Plan is still in force and the Strategic Plan does not supplant it.  No revision of the Academic Plan is under consideration at present.  This is not to say that there are no concerns regarding the Strategic Plan; but they have to do with the implementation of particular features of the plan, such as the J-term e-courses; and the Academic Affairs Committee believes that these features, like any other program at the university, should be monitored from time to time to be sure that they are consistent with our academic standards and with the values of the Academic Plan.  We think it might nonetheless clarify the situation if the Faculty Senate issued a simple statement along the following lines.

4.  Motion:

The Faculty Senate holds that the Academic Plan of 2003 is still in force as the guiding document concerning academic matters at UNH.  The newer Strategic Plan (“The University of New Hampshire in 2020”) builds on the Academic Plan and does not supplant it.  Should conflicts between them arise, it is to the Academic Plan that we must refer for guidance.

5.  Senate action:  passed unanimously.

6.  Senate chair’s signature:  Larry Prelli

Forwarded to:  President Mark Huddleston, on December 7, 2011

Forwarded to:  Provost John Aber, on December 7, 2011

Forwarded to:  Lisa MacFarlane, Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs, on December 7, 2011


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