Undergraduate Analysis

Strengths

  • Diversity (broadly defined)
  • Student support
  • Location in big city, specifically Atlanta
  • Research opportunities
  • Consolidation with Perimeter College
  • Student engagement
  • Advancement path for lecturer-track faculty
  • Diversity of students in STEM majors; opportunities for students from all backgrounds in STEM programs, including research experiences
  • Integration of humanities and sciences at the undergraduate level
  • Instructor investment
  • Data-driven
  • No achievement gaps
  • Lecturer innovation
  • Compact and coherent core curriculum
  • Physical consolidation in 25 Park Place building

Weaknesses

  • Heavy focus on time-to-degree may decrease the richness of the undergraduate experience
  • Uneven quality of instruction of core curriculum courses
  • Lack of specialized classroom spaces and learning environments
  • “One size fits all” program disciplines
  • Limited major-specific engagement with students early on
  • Limited program opportunities compared with other regional institutions
  • Competition for resources between departments within large college
  • Lack of communication with interdisciplinary areas
  • Inability to hold classes in 25 Park Place
  • Students’ desires are not reflected in degree programs
  • Location: open campus; perception of safety concerns, especially from parents outside city
  • Not enough diversity of programs
  • Programs not closely linked to job needs

Opportunities

  • Internships
  • Specialized career advisors
  • Continuum of student services support and engagement from matriculation to graduation
  • Infusions of technological training
  • Models available among recent graduates to show how diverse students succeed
  • Diversity pipeline to graduate school and the academe
  • Turner Field
  • Large size of college (student opportunities)
  • Better college preparation through Perimeter College
  • Growing media industry in Atlanta and statewide (“Y’allywood”)
  • New clock schedule could cater to needs of different student populations, including adult learners (could also be a threat, if it is likely to do the opposite) (suggested during combined session)
  • Students can be matched with advisors, faculty and/or career services professionals who can help them prepare according to their skills and future plans (suggested during combined session)
  • Undergraduate T/A-ships similar to Carnegie Mellon undergraduate TA program
  • Increased numbers of students living near downtown means more active campus life
  • Undergraduate and graduate students can collaborate
  • New central location of college in 25 Park Place could provide sense of community
  • Rigorous Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SOTL) should count toward research
  • New and existing exchange programs could be promoted

Threats

  • Reduction of resources; threat of state/federal funding cuts
  • Focus on career training vs. research experiences
  • Priorities of state and federal administrations
  • Poor college preparation from high school education
  • Rapid changes related to consolidation with Perimeter College
  • External decision making at the University level
  • Losing contact with the arts
  • National metrics distort our ability to assess our unique strengths
  • Perception of GSU as unable to compete with other regional programs
  • Persistence of perception that research valued more highly than teaching with tenure-track faculty
  • IIT systems perceived as less effective because of external selection
  • Perception of “Liberal Arts” as ineffective career preparation or politically threatening