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2014 Self-Study Design

1) Overview

A. Description of New York University

The opening of the University of London in 1828 convinced New Yorkers that New York, too, should have a university, and in 1831 a group of prominent citizens founded New York University. This was an historic event in American education. At the time, most students in American colleges and universities were members of the privileged classes. The founders of New York University intended to enlarge the scope of higher education to meet the needs of persons from other strata of society who aspired to careers in business, industry, science, and the arts, as well as in law, medicine, and the ministry. The first president of New York University’s governing council was Albert Gallatin, secretary of the treasury in Thomas Jefferson’s cabinet. Gallatin and his cofounders said that the new university was to be a “national university” that would provide a “rational and practical education for all,” regardless of national origin, religious beliefs, or social background.

While the University’s commitment to these ideals remains unchanged, Albert Gallatin would scarcely recognize NYU today. New York University is one of the 60 institutions, of the more than 3,000 US colleges and universities, that are members of the Association of American Universities. It is the largest private university in the United States, and perhaps the world, and is recognized nationally and internationally as a center of research, scholarship, and teaching. There are approximately 21,000 undergraduate students, the same number of graduate and professional students, and 20,000 non-credit students. Students attend from all 50 states and more than 130 countries. The University includes numerous schools, colleges, institutes, and programs, a major center in Abu Dhabi (UAE), and 13 study away sites. In 2013, NYU and NYU Abu Dhabi will be joined by a third portal campus in Shanghai, China, and a study away site will open in Washington, D.C. in fall 2012.

NYU’s schools and colleges are the College of Arts and Science, School of Law, Graduate School of Arts and Science, (which includes the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, the Institute of Fine Arts and the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World), Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, School of Continuing and Professional Studies, Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, Silver School of Social Work, Tisch School of the Arts, Gallatin School of Individualized Study, School of Medicine and Post- Graduate Medical School, and the College of Dentistry (which includes the College of Nursing). In addition, the University operates a branch campus program in Rockland County at St. Thomas Aquinas College. The Nelson Institute of Environmental Medicine is located in Sterling Forest, near Tuxedo, New York. Although the University is large, most of the divisions are small to moderate-sized units, with its own traditions, programs, and faculty. Enrollment in the undergraduate divisions of the University ranges between 130 and 7,672. While some introductory classes are large, many classes are small. Nearly 4,600 undergraduate courses are offered. The University grants more than 25 degrees.

The University provides housing for over 11,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Its eight libraries hold over 4.5 million volumes. The Elmer Holmes Bobst Library and Study Center at the main campus on Washington Square alone holds over 3.3 million volumes.

The faculty totals over 7,200 full-time and part-time members. Among them are 12 MacArthur fellows, 4 Nobel and Crafoord Prize winners, 21 members of the National Academy of Sciences, 68 members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and 7 Howard Hughes Investigators. There are over 9,000 administrative and staff employees.

B. NYU Mission Statement

Great cities are engines of creativity, and New York University takes its name and spirit from one of the busiest, most diverse and dynamic cities of all. The University lives within New York and other great cities, from Abu Dhabi to Shanghai, Paris to Prague, Sydney to Buenos Aires—all magnets for talented, ambitious people.
Thriving beyond borders and across academic disciplines, NYU has emerged as one of the most networked and extensive worldwide platform for learning, teaching, researching, building knowledge, and inventing new ways to meet humanity’s challenges. Its students, faculty and alumni feed off the stimulating power of swirling intellectual and cultural experiences by mastering academic disciplines, expressing themselves in the arts, and excelling in demanding professions.
New York University’s mission is to be a top quality international center of scholarship, teaching and research. This involves retaining and attracting outstanding faculty who are leaders in their fields, encouraging them to create programs that draw outstanding students, and providing an intellectually rich environment. NYU seeks to take academic and cultural advantage of its location and to embrace diversity among faculty, staff and students to ensure a wide range of perspectives, including international perspectives, in the educational experience.

C. Recent Developments

Several significant recent developments relate to the Self-Study. In March, President John Sexton announced the inauguration of the NYU Global Institute of Public Health, which will help “…galvanize the existing intellectual critical mass in global public health at NYU, [and] also…serve as a model for other mulit-university initiatives that seek to create bridges across traditional academic disciplines and units.” In April, the Mayor of New York announced that NYU’s proposed Center for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP) was a winner of the Applied Sciences NYC Initiative. CUSP, which is being developed in conjunction with several other educational institutions and with the support of corporate partners, is “…an applied science and engineering institute that will conduct research, support graduate study, and fashion real-world technologies to address the challenges of an increasingly urbanized planet….” [CUSP] will be located adjacent to the Brooklyn campus of the Polytechnic Institute of New York University.

D. Expectations

New York University will continue to evolve as a global network university. Provost David McLaughlin pointed out in a September 2011 letter to the faculty: “The developing research programs in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai, coupled with the excellence of our academic programs in New York, will open a whole new range of possibilities for future developments…. [C]oordinated development within and across schools and campuses…is intended to create the kind of synergies and interdisciplinarity that will make the most of our resources and bring them to bear on the complex issues of our time. Accordingly,...NYU will focus its attention on multi-school initiatives….” Among the initiatives he cited were the humanities, global public health, the future of the cities, and statistics and bio-statistics.
Arrangements continue to progress for the Polytechnic Institute of New York University to become the school of engineering and technology of NYU. Several administrative systems have been intergraded and academic integration has begun. 
In terms of physical facilities, the main development at the Washington Square campus will be the implementation of a twenty-year expansion plan, NYU2031: NYU in NYC, which has been approved by the New York City Planning Commission and City Council. This will provide new and increased facilities for academic purposes, research, student uses, and housing.

E. Preparation for the Self-Study

In the summer of 2011, President John Sexton asked Professor Norman Dorsen of the School of Law, and Counselor to the President, to chair the 2014 Middle States Self-Study, and Assistant Provost Barnett W. Hamberger to serve as Self-Study Coordinator, as both had done for the 2004 Self-Study on undergraduate education and the 2009 Periodic Review Report. As was the case for previous Middle States self-studies, it was decided to choose a topic of importance to the University (what Middle States classifies as a Selected Topics Report). During the ensuing months, Professor Dorsen and Assistant Provost Hamberger had a series of meetings with the president, provost, other senior University officers, and several deans about the possible focus of the self-study. Eventually, the University selected the theme of multi-school programs because of the many important University initiatives of this kind.  Four areas were selected for primary study: cities and the environment, data science and statistics, humanities, and public health. In April 2012, President Sexton appointed members of the Self-Study Steering Committee and subsequently Professor Dorsen appointed four Steering Committee members to chair the working groups, which were then constituted. Over the course of the 2011-12 academic year, the deans of individual schools made presentations about their multi-school programs to the University’s senior leadership. Professor Dorsen and Assistant Provost Hamberger drafted charges to the working groups, which were reviewed and affirmed by the group chairs and the Steering Committee in July 2012.

2) Nature and Scope of the Self-Study

As a large research university which is historically school-centric, NYU has a special need to address and integrate the increasing interdisciplinarity of knowledge in its educational offerings and research activities. What have been its experiences to-date? What are its opportunities for the future? What are the challenges to overcome?
Working groups have been established for the four selected areas of multi-school collaboration.

• Cities and the Environment. The working group will build on a recent report by the dean of the Law School on cities, the environment, and sustainability.

• Data Sciences and Statistics. A new discipline “with the goal of extracting knowledge from the deluge of data. ” It reaches “…across many disciplines in the sciences, social sciences and humanities.”

• Humanities. Exemplified by the three multi-school programs under the aegis of the Provost—the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics, the Humanities Initiative, and the Remarque Institute.

• Public Health. Multi-school collaboration is “…forming a truly interdisciplinary approach to addressing our most pressing global health challenges.”

• Depending on preliminary results of the working groups, we may develop a questionnaire to distribute to a sample of other multi-school programs and to collect additional information which might be helpful in developing our final conclusions and recommendations. 

3) Intended Outcome of the Self-Study

The goals of the Self-Study are to demonstrate compliance with the accreditation standards of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and to develop an understanding of major initiatives—their structure, how they function— to facilitate  improvements in existing multi-school programs and to guide in the development of new programs. We hope to develop interdisciplinary activities so well-grounded that they are not dependent on particular individuals, and which, while operating outside of schools, have deep foundations within the schools. We also will try to discover best practices and establish dependable structures for interdisciplinary work and predictors of success.

4) Organizational Structure of the Steering Committee and Working Groups


Self-Study Steering Committee

Norman Dorsen, Professor of Law, School of Law, Self-Study Chair
Barnett W. Hamberger, Assistant Provost, Self-Study Coordinator
Alicia Bell, Graduate Student, Educational Leadership, Politics, Advocacy, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Nina Cornyetz, Associate Professor, Gallatin School of Individualized Study
Martin Daughtry, Assistant Professor of Music, Faculty of Arts & Science
Randall Deike, Vice President of Enrollment Management
André A. Fenton, Professor of Neuroscience, Faculty of Arts & Science
Tracey Gardner, Chief of Staff, Wagner School of Public Service
Ingrid Gould Ellen, Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy, Wagner School of Public Service
Lisa Gitelman, Associate Professor of Media and English, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Heather Herrera, Director of Academic Affairs, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Anthony Jiga, Vice President, Budget and Planning
Yann LeCun, Professor of Computer Science, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
Jacques Lezra, Professor of Spanish and Portuguese and Comparative Literature, Faculty of Arts & Science
Mary E. Northridge, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology and Health Promotion, College of Dentistry
James Pace, Clinical Associate Professor, Associate Dean, College of Nursing
Cybele Raver, Vice Provost for Academic, Faculty and Research Affairs
Carol Shoshkes Reiss, Professor of Biology, Faculty of Arts & Science
Elizabeth Rohlfing, Assistant Dean of Planning, School of Law
Tazuko Shibusawa, Associate Dean, Silver School of Social Work
Griffin Simpson, Undergraduate Student, Liberal Studies Program 
Marcia Thomas, Executive Director, Public Health Initiative

Working Groups

Cities and the Environment

Ingrid Gould Ellen, Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy, Wagner School of Public Service, chair
Mosette Broderick, Clinical Professor of Art History, Faculty of Arts & Science
Wyatt Cmar, Undergraduate Student, Metropolitan Studies, and Economics, College of Arts and Science
Roderick Hills, Professor With Chair, School of Law
Alan Lightfeldt, Graduate Student, Urban Planning, Wagner School of Public Service
Anne Rademacher, Assistant Professor of Environmental & Metropolitan Studies, Social and Cultural Analysis, Faculty of Arts and Science
Amy Schwartz, Professor of Public Policy, Education, and Economics, Steinhardt School, Wagner School of Public Service
Patrick Sharkey, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Faculty of Arts & Science

Data Sciences and Statistics

Yann LeCun, Professor of Computer Science, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, chair
Constantin Aliferis, Associate Professor of Pathology, School of Medicine
David Greenberg, Professor of Sociology, Faculty of Arts & Science
Michael Laver, Professor of Politics, Faculty of Arts & Science
Foster Provost, Professor of Information Systems, Stern School of Business
Michael Purugganan, Professor of Genomics, Biology, Faculty of Arts & Science
Marc Scott, Associate Professor of Applied Statistics, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Margaret Wright, Professor of Computer Science, Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences


Jane Tylus, Professor of Italian, Faculty of Arts & Science, chair
Michael Beckerman, Professor of Music, Faculty of Arts & Science
Toral Gajarawala, Assistant Professor of English, Faculty of Arts & Science
Linse Kelbe, Undergraduate Student, Art History, College of Arts and Science
Laura Slatkin, Professor, Gallatin School of Individualized Study
April Strickland, Graduate Student, Department of Anthropology
Diana Taylor, Professor of Performance Studies and Spanish, Tisch School of the Arts
Larry Wolff, Professor of History, Faculty of Arts & Science

Public Health

Marcia Thomas, Executive Director of Public Health Initiatives, Office of the Executive Vice President for Health, chair
Marc Gourevitch, Professor, Medical School
Perry Halkitis, Professor of Applied Psychology, Public Health, & Medicine, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Erica Humphrey, Undergraduate Student, Public Health, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Katty Jones, Director of Program Services, Wagner Graduate School of Public Service
Pricila Mullachery, Graduate Student, Public Health, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
Mary E. Northridge, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology and Health Promotion, College of Dentistry
Deborah Padgett, Professor of Social Work, Silver School of Social Work
Nancy Van Devanter, Associate Professor of Nursing, College of Nursing

5) Charges to Working Groups and Guidelines for Their Reports

A. Charges to Working Groups
Each working group should consider the following issues in its assigned area and other issues that it regards worthy of examination:

1. Organization, leadership, and governance. How do existing units in a group’s interdisciplinary area relate to each other? What new organizational structures have been formed in an area or might be needed? How is the activity governed? How does a multi-school activity relate to the provost’s office? How is participation of NYU Abu Dhabi or NYU Shanghai (or a study away site), if relevant to the academic area, integrated into broader programs?

2. Faculty. How are the competing agendas of the multi-school activity and a faculty member’s home school’s expectations reconciled? Is there or should there be dedicated faculty? Can faculty participate in these programs and still meet their own research agendas? What are the issues relating to appointment? What are the ramifications of split loyalty for tenure? How are faculty teaching, advising, and other arrangements negotiated?

3. Finances. What arrangements have been made on budget and finances? Are others needed?

4. Administrative staff. What are staffing needs? Are they being fulfilled?

5. Student community. In collaborative multi-school programs that might not be housed in a school, how is a sense of identity and community created among students? How is consistent advisement provided? If applicable, how are internships and career guidance/opportunities managed?

6. University administration. What types of support are needed from the University administration? How can this be assured at various administrative levels?

7. Curriculum. Is there a defined interdisciplinary curriculum in an area? How was the curriculum developed and by whom? Does the special curriculum, if any, take account of perspectives from different disciplines and methodologies? Is there an apparent relationship to curricula in traditional disciplines? Does there seem to be coherence in the curriculum? Do appropriate teaching materials exist or do they need to be created?

8. Assessment. How are programmatic and student learning outcome goals established? How is success defined and how are successful outcomes measured? Is there evidence that assessment results are used to improve programs? Is there a timetable for carrying out assessment activities?

9. Support Services. Are additional support services and resources, or special arrangements, needed (e.g., library, IT)?In addition to stating its conclusions, each working group should describe how its findings provide evidence that the University is in compliance in whole or in part with Middle States Standards for accreditation:
• Standard 5 – The institution’s administrative structure and services facilitate learning and research/scholarship, foster quality improvement, and support the institution’s organization and governance.

• Standard 7 – Institutional Assessment: The institution has developed and implemented as assessment process that evaluates its overall effectiveness in achieving its mission and goals and its compliance with accreditation standards.

• Standard 9 – Student Support Services: The institution provides student support services reasonably necessary to enable each student to achieve the institution’s goals for students.

• Standard 10 – Faculty: The institution’s instructional, research, and service programs are devised, developed, monitored, and supported by qualified professionals.

• Standard 11 – Educational Offerings: The institution’s educational offerings display academic content, rigor, and coherence that are appropriate to its higher education mission. The institution identifies student learning goals and objectives, including knowledge and skills, for its educational offerings.
Working with the Self-Study coordinator, each working group should identify the documents and data it will need to review, and the individuals it will want to interview. Working groups should gather and analyze evidence, and produce outlines, preliminary drafts, and final drafts of reports in accord with the self-study timetable that is being developed. Working groups “are not expected to discover definitive solutions for every problem [or to resolve problems or issues].” Their charge is to identify critical issues…and to propose possible courses of action that might lead to improvements (Middle States Self-Study Handbook, p. 19).”

B. Guidelines for Working Group Reports
The reports submitted by the working groups should be about 15 pages and follow the style and format guidelines in Section VII, below, and should be organized as follows:

1) Overview of the group’s subject area and the questions it addressed.

2) The group’s findings and conclusions, including strengths and challenges. The group should explain how its findings, analysis, and conclusions relate to the Commission’s standards.

3) Recommendations for improvement. Recommendations should be based on the evidence and analysis produced by the working group.

6) Inventory of Support Documents

A. Standards to be covered by the Document Review 
Documents will address the Middle States Standards to be covered in whole or in part by the document review and will include the following:

The University’s two major planning documents NYU Framework 2031 and NYU in NYC:NYU 2031Strategic plans and annual reports for major administrative unitsNYU charter and bylawsFaculty and student handbooksPolicy statementsSchool bulletinsMinutes of major institutional committees (including the university senate)School outcomes assessment plans and reportsRelated websites.

B. Standards to be covered by the selected topics Self-Study

The Self-Study working groups should determine what data and documents they need. They will include at the least the following, which are all available:
Report on the Initiative in Data Science and StatisticsData Science program proposal

Report on Establishing a New Institute on the Cities, the Environment, and Sustainability at New York University (June 12, 2012)

The Inauguration of the NYU Global Institute of Public Health

(President Sexton’s March 26, 2012 email to University community)

Public Health accreditation reportProposal to New York State Education Department for revision of Ph.D. program in Public Health (December, 2011)

Proposal to New York State Education Department for ten new undergraduate interdisciplinary majors in global public health and another discipline (October, 2011)

Description of relevant programs including enrollments and faculty.

Documents (including website) related to the Center for Urban Science and Progress

7) Organization of the Self-Study Report
Our report will follow the Middle States guideline for a self-study of a 100 single spaced pages. The report will have an introductory chapter with an overview of New York University, an explanation of the importance of the topic we selected for our self-study, and a description of the self-study process (approximately 7 pages). There will be a chapter for each of the four areas being considered by the working groups (about 15 pages each). If a survey is conducted of other multi-school programs, the results and analysis will be presented in a separate chapter (10 pages). There will be a chapter integrating the findings of the previous chapters (20 pages) and a brief concluding chapter (3 pages).

8) Editorial Style and Format of All Reports
All reports should be written using Times New Roman font, 12 point, and saved in Microsoft Word format. Charts and tables should be produced as Word documents. Top and bottom margins should be 1”, the left 1.125” and the right 1”. Page numbers should be printed in the lower right corner. Reports should be single spaced.
For consistency, the following words should be capitalized: University, when referring to NYU; Evaluation Team; Steering Committee; Working Group when used with the name of the group (e.g., Working Group on Public Health), otherwise working group should be lower case. Self-study should be lower case. The chair of a body should be lower case. The type of programs we are studying should be described as multi-school, not inter-school or cross-school.

9) Timetable for the Self-Study and Evaluation

The following is the timetable for the self-study as of October 10, 2013:

Activity  Date
Logistical and other preparations for self-study Spring 2012
Status report to President   
March 15, 2012
Steering Committee Appointed March-April 2012
First meeting of Steering Committee April 16, 2012
Consultation visit by Ellie Fogarty, Middle States liaison April 25, 2012
Status report to President 
July 9, 2012
Working Groups formed July 15, 2012
Draft of Self-Study Design submitted to Middle States September 15, 2012
Presentation to meeting of provosts and deans September 19, 2012
Announcement of  Middle States Self-Study to NYU community September 2012
Response from University community October 10, 2012
Recommendations for Evaluation Team Chair submitted to Middle States
October 2012
Working Group chairs interim report to Steering Committee meeting December 12, 2012
Evaluation Team Chair selected by Middle States January 2013
Working Group chairs initial draft reports to Steering Committee meeting February 21, 2013 
Status report to President   
February 25, 2013
Draft questionnaire to be sent to sample of inter-school programs sent to Steering Committee for comments and suggestions of other groups. February 27, 2013
Questionnaire sent to sample of inter-school programs  March 12, 2013
Preliminary draft reports from working groups - sent to steering committee April 1, 2013
Steering Committee meeting to discuss working group reports and integrating chapter April 15, 2013
Steering Committee comments on working group reports April 22, 2013
Working Group reports revised;
draft introduction, integrating chapter, and financial sections prepared    
May, June 2013
Status report to President
June 25, 2013
Information received from NYU offices for Document Review July 2013
Draft report, excluding conclusion, sent to Steering Committee July 19, 2013
Meeting of Steering Committee to discuss draft report
August 1, 2013 
Status report to President
September 6, 2013
Status report on Common Days
September 10, 2013
Draft 2 of report (including conclusion and preliminary list of proposed appendices) sent to University community
September 10, 2013
Responses received from those who received draft 2
October 3, 2013
Document Review Roadmap related to Middle States standards not covered by Self-Study Design submitted October 14, 2013
Draft 3 of report sent to Steering Committee October 15, 2013
Steering Committee comments received
October 30, 2013
Visit by generalist evaluators for review of documents related to standards not covered by Self-Study
October 28, 2013
Visit by Evaluation Team Chair
October 29, 2013
Evaluation Team to be appointed by Middle States Fall 2013
Report of generalist evaluators received from Middle States December 2013
Final draft for President Sexton December 5, 2013
Documents to verify compliance with federal regulations to be submitted to Middle States by December 15, 2013
Submission of Self-Study to Middle States February 1, 2014
Self-Study distributed to University community on website February 2014
Visit of Evaluation Team member to study abroad sites March 2014
Site visit by Evaluation Team March 24-27, 2014
Evaluation Team draft report sent to NYU to correct factual errors April 10, 2014
NYU responds to team report April 20, 2014
Team Chair sends formal report to Middle States  April 27, 2014
NYU formal response to final report TBD
Middle States Commission on Higher Education meeting on NYU accreditation June 2014

10) Profile for the Visiting Evaluation Team

The chair of the evaluation team should be the president or provost of a major research university at the level of NYU, with prior experience as an evaluation team chair or as team member. The team should consist of faculty and senior administrators from major research universities who have dealt with organized multi-school and interdisciplinary activities. The chair and team members should have an understanding of the complexity and cacophony of NYU, what we are trying to accomplish through an emphasis on interdisciplinarity and the Global Network University, and how we are trying to do it.

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