Institutional Effectiveness

Institutional Effectiveness involves the entire institution in the evaluation of the College's performance in achieving its mission and goals and the implementation of continuous quality improvement across all programs and services.

Continuous Quality Improvement

The Strategic Plan establishes the mission and goals to guide the College into the future. The Annual Program Update (APU) and Program Review (PR) track program performance and are the core of Joliet Junior College's continuous quality improvement (CQI) process.

Strategic Plan

Strategic planning is an organizational management activity to set priorities, focus energy and resources, strengthen operations, ensure that employees and other stakeholders are working toward common goals, establish agreement around intended outcomes/results, and assess and adjust the organization's direction in response to a changing environment.

Annual Program Update (APU)

All programs* at Joliet Junior College prepare an Annual Program Update. The APU is an annual report describing recent performance, a situational analysis, and an action plan for the next fiscal year with proposals for future resources.

The APU includes three basic types of information:

  1. Performance during the fiscal year recently completed.
    -Extent to which program effectiveness goals (PEG) were achieved.
    -Extent to which program learning outcomes (PLO) were achieved, if applicable.
    -Extent to which general education learning outcomes (GEO) were achieved, if applicable.
  2. A situational analysis, which includes a determination of
    -Extent to which the program meets the needs of the community.
    -Cost effectiveness
    -Extent to which the program maintains high quality and integrates quality components.
    The review of performance and the situational analysis leads to the development of intended action steps.
  3. The action plan for the coming fiscal year includes intended action steps with metrics, timelines, resources, and responsible persons. This information is the basis for operational, facility, IT, and budget development for the next fiscal year.

The APU are compiled and analyzed by chairs, deans, directors, and members of the President's Cabinet (i.e. supervisors). The supervisors synthesize information on performance, discern issues, and prioritize future work and resources requests into summary reports for review and discussion in the President's Cabinet. At each level, writers tie activities to the College's strategic goals and consider future actions and resource needs. The supervisor's summary reports inform the college leaders who prepare the College's diversity, facility, financial, strategic, and technology plans.

Program Review (PR)

Program reviews are a self-study conducted on a five-year cycle by each program and reviewed by JJC and the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB). Like the APU, they report performance (albeit for five years), provide a situational analysis, and action plan.

The ICCB states the purpose of the program review as:

  • Support strategic campus-level planning and decision-making related to instructional programming and academic support services, including but not limited to program revisions, program closures, and revisions to services;
  • Address inequities to support program improvement;
  • Support the delivery of locally responsive, cost-effective, high quality programs and services across Illinois' community college system.

The Higher Learning Commission in their Criteria for Accreditation also expects the College "maintains a practice of regular program reviews and acts upon the findings" in order to ensure the quality of offerings.

The PR differs from the APU because it reports performance during the prior five years. This information is easily summarized from performance reported in previous APU.

Program Improvement Review

During the year a program submits their program review, the program leaders will participate in a Program Improvement Review (PI Review) with the Program Improvement Committee (PIC).

The PI Review has two main components:

  • Presentation of Program - This consists of the program review document and a concise presentation of findings to PIC. Program leaders may also use the presentation as an opportunity to solicit input on specific ideas.
  • Feedback - Members of the Program Improvement Committee provide feedback using a Critical Friends protocol to ensure the program leaders receive affirmative and constructive feedback. The reviewers focus on the most critical/significant aspects of the program, not minutia.

The APU and PR also serve as essential evidence for accreditation of programs and the College.

APU/PR Resources

Templates, data, and resources for the APU or program review are in the Annual Program Update portal and JJC's Microsoft Teams sites for

The Institutional Research webpage, has a variety of resources including the following:

*A program is any activity that consumes budget dollars and resources and that fulfills a specific need.