AQIP Categories Explanations

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Together, the nine AQIP Categories analyze interrelationships among systems essential to all effective colleges and universities. To advance the core purpose of all higher education, the Categories take a systemic view, defining and evaluating all of the key systems or processes within an organization as they relate to learning, and demanding concrete indicators that measure the effectiveness of those systems and processes. The questions in each Category provide every organization a roadmap for the examination of its systems by posing two questions repeatedly: Are we doing the right things to achieve our mission? and Are we doing those things well? Mission-focused and holistic, the Categories provide a framework that supports improvement within any organization whose mission targets learning.

Using the AQIP Categories

Each of the Categories deals with a related group of processes, and allows an organization to analyze, understand, and explore opportunities for improving these processes. Thus each Category asks:

How does your organization approach these processes? How do you design and stabilize key processes? Have you evolved methods you use consistently to achieve the goals you want?

How broadly have you implemented your approach across different departments, operations, and locations?

How do you measure your processes and evaluate your results? What trends do you perceive? How do your results compare with the results of others’ approaches designed to achieve similar goals?

How do you use information about your processes’ performance results to improve your own approach? How does your organization learn to improve continuously from your experience with these processes?

How effectively do your processes and their results serve your students’ and other stakeholders’ needs?

Categories are for processes Looking at the big picture Finding your key processes

Deciding if process work and produce the desired results.

Encouraging institutions to not just manage process, but to systematically improve them.

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