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This section provides step-by-step guidance for a department chair and a leadership team to conduct a periodic review of its undergraduate program and accompanying development of strategic goals with specific initiatives. This material can inform and augment existing practices, and build a process when needed. Guidance is provided on a review process that includes holding conversations with members of your department and other stakeholders, gathering and analyzing data, writing a self-study report, identifying and hosting external reviewers, and identifying strategic objectives and mechanisms by which they can be implemented and monitored (or developing and implementing a more formal document such as a strategic plan). Resources include: a departmental review and strategic planning timeline, topics to a department might explore in a program review, a template for a self-study report, and a sample site visit agenda. For advice to external reviewers conducting program reviews, see the section on . Unlike most other sections of the EP3 Guide, this section describes a sequential process and all of the effective practices should be studied and then implemented in order.
Completing a periodic (optimally every five to seven years) review of your undergraduate physics program, often also required for institutional accreditation, will provide a department with updated goals and initiatives to achieve them, stronger rationales when arguing for resources, disciplinary context for supporting such requests, and the ability to demonstrate to the administration a commitment to proactive planning and ongoing improvement. The review process described here, including garnering advice from external reviewers, facilitates discussions that help guide a department in reaching consensus on strategic directions and specific initiatives.