IBHE to redirect PQP

By Peter Schuh

The Illinois Board of Higher Education will be meeting today to discuss administrative functions, support systems and academic calendars of Illinois public universities.

The IBHE will be directing its Priorities, Quality and Productivity initiative toward university administrative and support functions such as libraries, counseling and career services and executive management. Last year the IBHE recommended eliminating 190 academic programs under the PQP initiative.

To try to improve the quality and efficiency of administrative and support services, the IBHE will be calling for Illinois universities to apply the PQP guidelines to these areas.

The IBHE will recommend universities examine their services in order to reduce or eliminate state funds that support programs considered non-essential to the universities mission, ensure that growth in administrative areas is justifiable by growth of clientele or improved productivity, locate and remove functional overlap and restructure services that operate inefficiently.

The IBHE will ask universities to report the findings and recommendations of their examinations in their 1993 Productivity Reports. The reports are due to be received by the IBHE in September.

IBHE Deputy Director Ross Hodel said the IBHE will make its own recommendations to the universities during its November meeting, however, he said he was uncertain as to the magnitude of the impending recommendations.

In addition, the IBHE will be reviewing the university’s academic calendars. The IBHE will ask universities to examine their academic calendars to ensure they promote quality graduate and undergraduate education and to determine whether they best benefit students and staff and utilize institutional resources.

The IBHE also will vote to establish a committee to study the issue of affordability in higher education. The committee will study several factors regarding the cost of education, such as the availability of financial aid, recent raises in tuition and fees and the changing needs of the undergraduate student.

The IBHE will hold its meeting at 9 a.m. today at Lewis University in Romeoville.