Winthrop University has undertaken Academic
Program Review (APR) since the 1980’s.
The guidelines for conducting APR were initially developed
at the state level by the South Carolina Commission on Higher
Education (CHE) with input from academic officers at each of the
public higher education institutions.
Until December 2000, CHE coordinated a statewide review of
academic offerings in disciplines that did not have specialized
State budget cuts forced the Commission to abandon all such reviews
except those related to teacher certification or teacher
advancement. In March
2010, CHE was forced to dissolve its partnership with SC Department
of Education and NCATE.
Winthrop continued the practice of program review,
conducting both internal and external reviews.
Current guidelines were adopted in 2007 and are updated periodically
to ensure compliance with regional accrediting bodies and government
An excellent monograph entitled,
Program Review: A Tool for
Continuous Improvement of Academic Programs, published in the
Association of Institutional Research Professional File, Number 105, Fall
2007, was used in the development of these guidelines.
It describes the conceptual framework underlying APR and “includes
more recent accountability and assessment issues” (p.1). Portions of
the present document have been adapted, with permission, from James Madison
Program Review Guidelines.