QEP Executive Summary
The Southern University Law Center (SULC) accreditation was reaffirmed by the SACSCOC Board of Trustees on December 2, 2021, for the next ten (10) years. As required by the Reaffirmation process, SULC developed a comprehensive Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP). The QEP “is an integral component of the reaffirmation process and is derived from an institution’s ongoing comprehensive planning and evaluation processes.”
To identify an adequate QEP, SULC formed a committee that gathered information, developed a proposal, and developed a timeline for implementation of a QEP compliant with SACSCOC standards. Leveraging an existing annual engagement process with faculty, alumni, and employers, the committee gathered information on various topics that included matters that impacted student learning outcomes, strengths and weaknesses of SULC students’ performance at internships, and matters that impacted student matriculation. The information gathered from the meetings with constituents helped the committee determine that improved analytical skills was the greatest area of opportunity to improve student learning and student success.
The committee determined that it would be best to create a pilot program for its QEP intervention. With this in mind, the committee recommended the creation of new courses which would replace one section of Legal Analysis & Writing I and one section of Legal Analysis & Writing II. The pilot courses were designed for the express purpose of exploring pedagogical strategies in a selected population of first-year students beginning in Fall 2018. One of the key goals for the pilot courses was for students, upon completion of the courses, to properly analyze and synthesize case law in various subject areas, with a focus on first year courses. The QEP committee proposed a plan of data collection to allow an assessment of whether the intervention/pilot had a positive impact on the development of analytical skills of students enrolled in the piloted courses as compared to those students who were not enrolled in the courses. The proposed pilot QEP intervention courses were reviewed and approved by the Curriculum Committee, and the SULC faculty.
The QEP committee was tasked with creating and selecting a slogan for the QEP. The committee agreed on the slogan of “Analysis Matters.” The committee marketed its intervention by using the “Analysis Matters” slogan throughout all departments of SULC. The QEP committee also hosted a launch event for the students, featuring food, games, and a raffle drawing that emphasized the importance of analysis.
The pilot QEP courses were initially taught from the Fall of 2018 through Spring 2020. After the approval of full implementation based on the pilot’s success, the QEP courses were taught to all first-year students starting in Fall 2020. Assessment results at the end of the first and second year of full implementation yielded the desired result of more than 85% of first-year students performing at or above accomplished in the area of analysis. SULC will continue to collect data and make decisions based upon the data collected.