Educational Excellence and Student Experience Updates


  • 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 collaborations and its opportunities for students to participate in an international experience.

Admitted Spartan Day

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

Budget Allocations

See detail on budget allocations for priority group 2.

2015-16 Completed Action Items

  • The priority group subcommittee involved with creating general education pathways created advising materials used in pilot sections of English 1A; and worked with Academic Senate, Graduate and Undergraduate Program staff and advisors to create certificates for each pathway. The pathway proposals will be available in late April for review by college curricular committees, chairs and directors.
  • Created enhanced writing support services including the implementation of Writing Fellows for Stretch English and refinement of the Writing Fellows program to create a successful, sustainable model to support writing instruction.
  • Offered campus-wide training seminars and the implementation of ongoing Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) training for instructors teaching 100W courses.
  • Submitted a proposal for integrated writing support services that includes a more robust Writing Center, enhanced international student support, supplemental instruction proposal for first-year composition, centralized supported training for tutors and peer tutors at graduate and undergraduate levels to help improve consistency and high-quality writing support and instruction.
  • Enhanced global citizenship through an integrated Graduate Student Orientation in fall 2015 and spring 2016 that allowed international students to engage more meaningfully with resident students.
  • Expanded programming for International Education Week to include a Study Abroad and Faculty Led Program Fair, a global breakfast, an international boulevard of languages and an international IQ quiz with more than 4,000 students engaged in the activities throughout the week.
  • Provided professional development to faculty to support curricular and co-curricular initiatives in support of global citizenship such as:
    • a collaborative art project between the USA and India that will exhibit migration narratives in public spaces
    • the development of relationships between teachers in China and France to provide support in working with children with autism;
    • developed a faculty-led program in Scotland; and
    • developed procedures and policies to scale up implementation of the passport program and global leadership opportunities for students in the Lucas College and Graduate School of Business.
  • Developed a project plan, timeline and deliverables for completing a data warehouse; reviewed a similar data reporting and student data warehouse developed at CSUMB to identify tools and framework needed to develop SJSU’s student data warehouse.
  • Completed a proof of concept with consultants from Oracle OBIA.
  • Identified the types of data reports needed by colleges to manage student enrollment and track student progress to degree.
  • IEA hosted monthly brown bag to support use of Tableau, a data analysis tool.
  • Working with FD&O and a vendor to complete cost estimates for a College of Education Student Success Center and renovation the College of Science Student Success Center in 2015-16 (all other colleges have an established Student Success Center.)

Summer 2015 Completed Action Items

  • In conjunction with Student Affairs and Information Technology Services, the Spartan Planner launched on May 15, with more than 7,300 individual students logging into the online service over the summer. Organized around an admission to graduation theme, the tool allows students to see a variety of schedule options for the courses they need to stay on track to graduation.
  • The team met with college representatives in the spring to identify unmet data needs to assist with enrollment management. From those meetings, the team identified seven key reports that would most support college needs. Over the summer, SJSU contracted with BCT Inc. to prepare a data model that would support the seven reports and to plan for the system architecture of a data warehouse.
  • Working with IEA, the team rolled out a new data visualization tool called Tableau, that will better help with enrollment management.
  • The team reapportioned $28,000 upon learning that budget policy prohibits the use of funds for student scholarships. Instead the money was used for additional faculty stipends to develop curriculum and for graduate student orientation.
  • New student orientation for 1,700 graduate students that aims to promote integration and interaction between international students and local students.
  • Meetings continued on potential new general education pathways focused around the themes of sustainability and global engagement, with key courses identified for the potential pathways.
  • SJSU put out a request for proposals to identify a vendor to build the data warehouse, with plans to hire the vendor in Fall 2015.
  • Graduation rate dashboards were designed for each college and were released at the end of August.
  • Updated supplemental course criteria for transfers in Fall 2016 to ensure admitted students are prepared to start upper-division coursework in their major.

2014-15 Completed Action Items

  • College of Humanities and the Arts Student Success Center opened in Spring 2015.
  • 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.


Proposed Action Items From Initial Plan

Data Management for Student Success
  • Implement a student information data warehouse. Phase 1: Spring 2015; Phase 2 Summer 2015 to Fall 2016. Ongoing.
  • Work with Student Affairs and Information Technology on joint project: Spartan Planner, which is organized on the “A to G” theme – Admissions to Graduation. Implementation expected by Fall 2015. Completed.  Transfer student admission is scheduled to be completed by Fall 2016. Completed.
  • (A related project that resides outside of the group is the degree audit project, led by Nancy Day.)

Lead: Marna Genes

Enrollment Planning and Advising for Student Success
  • Determine Student Success best practices, and share with all college and other student success entities. Ongoing.
  • Establish Student Success Centers in the College of Humanities and the Arts and the College of Education; renovate the Success Center in the College of Science. The H&A Center has been completed. Other center updates are still in progress.

Lead: Marna Genes

Achievement Gap
  • Preliminary analysis of transfer student data has been completed and reported to Academic Affairs Leadership Team. Work will continue in the College of Business pending data verification check with IEA and other colleges.
  • URM data is being, and will continue to be, analyzed through Fall 2016. Lisa Oliver is scheduled to present her preliminary findings on April 22​, 2015.  The title of her talk is: “Student Success and Retention:  Supporting Underrepresented, First-Generation and Transfer Students." Completed.
  • Engage vendor to provide specific targeted points of intervention to support URM student retention and progress to degree. Timeline: Spring 2015-Fall 2016.  

Lead: Maureen Scharberg

Student Experience of Curriculum
  • Draft working plan has been developed, comprised of General Education, American Institutions and SJSU Studies courses. Timeline: Phase 1 : Spring and Summer 2015; Phase 2 Fall 2015; Phase 3 Spring 2016.

Leads: Marna Genes and Maureen Scharberg

  • Supplemental course criteria completed. Implement for transfer students in Fall 2016.

Lead: Jan English-Lueck

Writing Support
  • Working plan is being prepared. Timeline: Phase 1 : Spring and Summer 2015; Phase 2 Fall 2015; Phase 3 Spring 2016. Completed

Lead: Lisa Vollendorf

Global Citizenship
  • Working plan developed.

Lead: Ruth Huard

Team Leader
Carl Kemnitz, Deputy Provost

Former Team Leader
David Steele, Dean, former 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
Walt Jacobs, Dean, College of Social Sciences
Joyce Lum, Student, Business Management Information Systems
Alison McKee, Associate Professor, Television, Radio, Film & Theatre (faculty representative)
Ron Rogers, Chair, Associate Dean, College of Social Sciences
Stacy Gleixner, Interim AVP, Student Academic Success Services
Maureen Scharberg, former AVP, Student Academic Success Services
Marlene Turner, Interim Dean, Lucas College and Graduate School of Business
Lisa Vollendorf, Dean, College of Humanities and the Arts