A department or program review provides an occasion to reexamine learning goals and course offerings, identify programmatic strengths and weaknesses, envision the future shape of the curriculum, articulate goals and aspirations, and consider developments in the discipline of all kinds, including, for example, responses to the need for diversity, equity, and inclusion as well as intellectual, technological, and pedagogical developments. One of the central values of the review process comes from extended, collective reflection among all department/program colleagues that results in a self-study, which is shared with an external consulting committee of reviewers. Respected colleagues in relevant fields, including those aligned with efforts to diversify the discipline, are invited by the associate dean for academic affairs to serve on the review committee and support the department/ program in the review. Rather than serving as an evaluative body, review committees are requested to act as consultants to the department/program and the deans, offering critical and empathetic counsel. The reviewers read materials provided by the department/program and meet with faculty, students, and administrators during a two- or three-day campus visit. Typically, reviews of academic departments and programs are conducted approximately every ten years; the specific timing is arranged by the Office of the Dean for Academic Affairs in collaboration with the department/program.
The process begins approximately one year prior to the anticipated review team visit, with the associate dean, department chair/program director, and academic department coordinator meeting to determine the desired semester for review as well as to outline the process and specific schedule for the review. The chair/director subsequently meets with all members of the department/program to discuss their overall goals for the review.
The associate dean will ask the department/program to recommend colleagues from other institutions to be considered for the external review committee. This list should include those with expertise in relevant fields within the discipline along with demonstrated experience in a distinguished academic setting. Normally, the review committee consists of three members and includes tenured faculty from liberal arts colleges and larger research universities who have attained some prominence in their discipline and who, together, represent a variety of disciplinary orientations and viewpoints. The list of proposed reviewers should include scholars who are engaged in the work of compositional, curricular, and/or pedagogical diversity in their departments and/or fields. The review committee is formally appointed by the dean for academic affairs. Details of their campus visit and the itinerary of meetings will be arranged by the Office of the Dean for Academic Affairs in coordination with the department/program.
 The chair/director will consult with the associate dean about which faculty members will be involved in the external review process.