Academic Affairs Working Plan 2014-17

Academic Affairs moves forward Vision 2017

  • One working plan priority is to support research, scholarship and creative activity for faculty.
  • One working plan priority is to update classrooms such as this large lecture room with fixed seating.
  • One working plan priority is to establish student success centers in each college.

Early in the fiscal year, the Academic Affairs Leadership Team and faculty, staff, and student representatives began to develop a two-year Academic Affairs working plan (PDF). A primary goal was to create action items that would have immediate and visible results. President Qayoumi agreed to invest $6 million in this plan over two years.

The team brainstormed a variety of projects and initiatives, ultimately settling on three main areas that have become known as the priority groups:

  • 21st Century Teaching and Learning Spaces: focused on upgrading classrooms to create more hospitable, comfortable and functional spaces to enhance student learning. Updates include moveable and accessible furniture, whiteboards, blinds, and technology upgrades in collaboration with Academic Technology and Information Technology Services. Initial improvements will be made in Summer 2015, with additional improvements slated for 2015-16.  $3 million allocated
  • Educational Excellence and Student Experience – focused on identifying ways to improve student retention/graduation rates and support learning through global experiences, with some programs initiated in Spring 2015 and additional programs phased in during 2015-16.  $1.5 million allocated
  • RSCA and Professional Development Support – focused on supporting faculty and staff members in achieving continuous professional development opportunities. Resources support research, scholarship and creative activity for faculty; support potential collaborations with students; and provide professional development opportunities to staff. Some programs initiated in Spring 2015 with additional programs phased in during 2015-16.  $1.5 million allocated

Visit the Priority Group Budget Allocation Detail page for more information on how each group is using its allocation.

Since October, each priority group team established a weekly meeting schedule that has been maintained all year to ensure the projects progressed in meaningful ways. As their working plans evolved, priority groups have posted updates on the Provost website and solicited feedback from the campus community.

Below are highlights from the first year’s progress and a summary of future projects/initiatives slated for the 2015-16 academic year.

21st Century Teaching and Learning Spaces



  • Update classrooms with appropriate technology to facilitate instruction.
  • Equip classrooms with updated furniture (including accessible furniture and instructor tables) that allows instructors to create set-ups that meet their instructional needs.

A humanities and the arts professor lectures students.

  • Provide training for faculty, staff and students on how to use available hardware and software to improve learning and assessment.

Pictured at right: More than 95 classrooms across campus will be updated this summer.

Notable Progress

  • Conducted a survey of more than 600 faculty members on how they use existing technology and what technology would most benefit them in the future, as well as which classrooms are in most need of updates. See survey results (PDF).
  • Analyzed the results of the survey and reviewed the usage of each class/lab space to compile a list of FTES-generating classrooms that are most in need of improvements and are used by the most students based on FTES. See the final recommendations (PDF.)
  • Visited classrooms to confirm needs, such as relocating/replacing white boards, replacing blinds, moving pull-down screens so they don’t cover white boards, and/or replacing projectors.
  • Identified new furniture solutions for classrooms and solicited input from colleges on which classrooms to update to most benefit faculty and students.

Future Plans

  • New fixed theater seating will be installed in five large lecture rooms to make them more accessible and useable; a sixth room will be completed in 2016.  
  • Academic Technology crews will refresh/add audio/visual components to select classrooms, starting in Summer 2015.
  • The team is collaborating with Information Technology Services to install lecture-capture/telepresence units in seven classrooms, starting in Summer 2015.  Mobile telepresence carts are also being developed for testing.

Team Leader
Dennis Jaehne, AVP for Graduate and Undergraduate Programs

Team Members

Bem Cayco, Chair, Department of Mathematics
Fred Cohen, Chair, School of Music and Dance
Ruth Kifer, Dean, University Library
Chris Laxton, Director, Academic Technology
Michael Parrish, Dean, College of Science
Jennifer Redd, Interim Director, eCampus
Matthew Stephens, Student, Mechanical Engineering


Educational Excellence and Student Experience



  • Improve student retention and graduation rates, especially for minority students, through more targeted advising and academic supports.
  • Engage students in general education by creating clusters of courses around common interests such as sustainability, creativity or global citizenship. See a list of initiatives.
  • Increase awareness of diversity at SJSU, its global colA tour guide shows families around SJSU at Admitted Spartans Day.laborations and its opportunities for students to participate in an international experience.

Notable Progress

  • College of Humanities and the Arts Student Success Center opened in Fall 2014.
  • Chair of the Educational Leadership department Lisa Oliver presented, “Student Success and Retention: Supporting Underrepresented, First-Generation and Transfer Students.”
  • Met with campus-wide stakeholders to discuss the creation of a student data warehouse and the “Spartan Planner,” an admission-to-graduation pathway. The data warehouse will allow advisors to better pinpoint when students need support and the “A to G” pathway will help them create a plan to graduate within four years.
  • Hosted a working group with more than two dozen faculty and staff members to discuss creating general education clusters around areas of interest.

Pictured above: A student tour guide shows families around San Jose State University on Admitted Spartans Day. One priority is to create a clear pathway from Admission to Graduation for incoming students. Photo by David Schmitz

Future Plans

  • Provide scholarships for students participating in a global experience, starting in Summer 2015, with two students from each college to be awarded $2,000.
  • Hire a faculty fellow and student assistants to create a communication plan to increase awareness of the various initiatives, programs, activities and events on campus related to global citizenship, with appointments to be made in Summer 2015.
  • Provide grants for one faculty member in each college and the university library to develop courses related to global citizenship, available in 2015-16.
  • Establish a College of Education Student Success Center and renovate the College of Science Student Success Center in 2015-16 (all other colleges have an established Student Success Center.)
  • Hire a vendor to create best practices in offering intervention to underrepresented minority students to increase retention and graduation rates, to be implemented by Fall 2016.
  • Update supplemental course criteria for transfers in Fall 2016 to ensure admitted students are prepared to start upper-division coursework in their major.

Team Leader
David Steele, Dean, Lucas College and Graduate School of Business

Team Members 
Elaine Chin, Dean, Connie L. Lurie College of Education
Jan English-Lueck, Interim Dean, College of Social Sciences
Marna Genes, AVP, Academic Budgets and Planning
Ruth Huard, Dean, College of International and Extended Studies
Joyce Lum, Student, Business Management Information Systems
Alison McKee, Associate Professor, Television, Radio, Film & Theatre
Ron Rogers, Chair, Psychology
Maureen Scharberg, AVP, Student Academic Success Services
Lisa Vollendorf, Dean, College of Humanities and the Arts

RSCA and Professional Development Support


PrioritiesOne goal of the priority groups is to increase the opportunity for research, scholarship and creative activity for faculty.

  • Create a campus-wide program to support faculty members in developing a plan for research, scholarship and creative activity while also increasing access to external support such as grants that will sustain their work.
  • Allow colleges to develop specific plans to support research, scholarship and creative activity for the disciplines they serve.
  • Provide professional development opportunities for staff members.

Notable progress

  • An application for Academic Affairs Staff Professional Development proposals (PDF) went out July 9. Staff members will be able to request funding for workshops, training sessions, subscriptions/memberships in professional organizations, and other similar professional development activities. Proposals may be for individuals or for group development activities. Proposals will be reviewed during the summer and awarded by the start of fall semester. For more information, read the FAQ on the proposals.
  • Reviewed practices at other CSU campuses to see if they had developed a sustainable way to reduce teaching loads while meeting FTEs goals to give faculty members time to pursue RSCA; analyzed the impact reduced teaching loads would have at SJSU.
  • The Office of Research and the Center for Faculty Development is supporting faculty through individual consultations as well as access to a nationally-recognized faculty professional development organization.
  • Deans submitted their college-specific RSCA plans and assessment metrics for approval by the Office of Research with funds available to colleges following approval.
  • An SJSU Research Foundation Board of Directors Sponsored Programs Advisory Committee that acted as a sub-committee of this team evaluated the present model of Facilities & Administration allocations to the campus after covering specific expenses.  The committee is scheduled to present their findings in late May to the Board followed by campus discussions in Fall 2015.

Pictured Above: One of the priorities is to support research, scholarship and creative activity for faculty as well as foster collaborations with students.

Future Plans

  • The Center for Faculty Development, the Office of Research and the SJSU Research Foundation will offer support including writing workshops for both new faculty as well as more experienced researchers; mentoring programs regarding strategies to launch and sustain RSCA agendas; and opportunities to create cross-disciplinary collaborations that will enhance the competitive edge in applying for grant funding.
  • Deans will roll out their college-level RSCA support plans. Plans may include offering start-up capital and support to new faculty, reducing teaching loads and/or supporting faculty in securing external funding to continue their research.
  • In Fall 2015, a panel discussing the impact of grants on SJSU will initiate a conversation that will be followed by an open forum with the campus community

Team Leader
Alice Hines, Interim Dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts

Team Members
Amy D’Andrade, Associate Dean for Research, College of Applied Sciences and Arts
Marc D’Alarcao, Associate Dean for Research, College of Science
Elna Green, AVP, Faculty Affairs
Andrew Hsu, Dean, Charles W. Davidson College of Engineering
Richard McNabb, Professor, English and Comparative Literature
Gilles Muller, Chair, Chemistry
Samantha Olah, Student, Behavioral Science and Anthropology
Pamela Stacks, AVP, Office of Research
Amy Strage, Associate VP, Faculty Development

Share your thoughts


Provost Feinstein is currently soliciting input in regards to the three priority groups that have been established.  Please submit your comments below: