External academic review

The external academic review is an important mechanism for the initiation of departmental and institutional change to further the excellence of the university's educational programs. Each academic department at SCAD will complete a comprehensive program review of its graduate and undergraduate degree programs every five years. The purpose of the external academic review is to acknowledge strengths and pursue ways to further improve the quality of the institution's academic programs to enhance the fulfillment of SCAD's mission. The departments of academic services and institutional effectiveness are primarily responsible for the oversight of the program review.


The review process includes the following:

  1. The preparation of a departmental self-study
  2. An online review by two external reviewers
  3. An action plan based on the review results
  4. The department's follow-up reports

The program review should be a meaningful process based on academic criteria and student learning. It should be evaluative as well as descriptive, directed toward action and resulting in improvement. The program review process will identify areas that require immediate attention and establish priorities for action that can be implemented over time.


The information gathered will provide a critical and comprehensive review of the department focused on the following key areas:

  • Description and history of the department
  • Curriculum and methods that facilitate learning outcomes
  • Student trends and response to industry trends
  • Faculty credentials, accomplishments and development
  • Alumni accomplishments

Overseen by the dean (or delegated associate dean), the responsibility for completion of the program review is assigned to the department chair and associate chair. Department chairs and associate chairs are expected to collaborate with their colleagues at other SCAD locations and involve departmental faculty members throughout all steps of the program review process.