The Keene State College self-study was designed to be an inclusive process, with numerous opportunities for campus discussion and feedback on the document drafts. The self-study was prepared following the guidelines of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
In preparation for the self-study, a campus task force chaired by Dr. Gordon Leversee, Dean of Sciences, was charged with reviewing the College's mission statement in the spring of 1998. The task force examined past accreditation reports, reviewed the mission statements of comparator institutions, and evaluated changes at Keene State since the last mission review. They presented a draft of a revised mission statement to President Yarosewick in the fall 1998.
In October 1998, President Stanley J. Yarosewick appointed a self-study steering committee co-chaired by the College's three vice presidents: Dr. Robert Golden, Academic Affairs; Dr. Delina Hickey, Student Affairs; and Dr. Jay Kahn, for Finance and Planning. The following task force members had responsibility for the eleven standards:
Dr. Sandra Price, Director of Institutional Research, also served on the steering committee, and Dr. Helen Frink was appointed editor of the self-study.
The first task of the self-study steering committee was to plan and organize a campus-wide conference to prepare the campus for the accreditation review processes. In addition to hearing presentations from Walter Eggers, Chair of CIHE, and Peggy Maki, Associate Director of CIHE, the President introduced the revised mission statement draft and the central role that it would play in the self-study process.
The chair of each standard assembled a subcommittee as well as a list of readers that was as representative of the campus as possible. At each stage in the process of preparing the self-study, the Steering Committee organized forums to familiarize the campus with the self-study process and to elicit the broadest possible feedback on the draft chapters. Drafts of the self-study documents were posted on the campus's intranet.
The standard chairs, working with representative subcommittees, drafted the chapters. The descriptive portions of the chapters were drafted in the spring 1999, followed by open campus discussions on the draft at the start of the fall 1999 semester. The assessment portions of the chapters were drafted in fall 1999, followed by discussion forums in January 2000. The projections were drafted in spring 2000 followed by forums in May. Feedback from these forums resulted in modifications to the draft at each stage of the process. The major themes which emerged from the process are described in the following chapters.