Division of Academic Affairs

Calendar Conversion

To date 213 programs have been submitted to New York State Education Department and 202 (95%) have been approved.


Outstanding News Received from MSCHE: Reaccreditation and a Commendation

At its November 15, 2012 meeting the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) acted to accept RIT’s Periodic Review Report (PRR), to reaffirm accreditation and to commend the institution for the quality of the PRR. The next evaluation visit is scheduled for 2016-2017.

Unlike many institutions, this means that RIT is not required to provide any type of progress or monitoring follow-up report. Forty institutions submitted a PRR in June, 2012. Fifty-three percent of these institutions were required to provide some type of follow up report. RIT and twelve other institutions were fully accredited with a commendation and no follow-up requirements.

This is certainly a testimony to the exemplary work of RIT’s PRR Steering Committee, which was significantly strengthened by a collaborative process of feedback and critique embraced by the governance bodies, the Board of Trustees, and the entire RIT community.

We can all take pride in this outcome and especially the commendation from MSCHE.

University Studies Program

University Studies Advisor Successfully Completes Formal Certification in the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator (MBTI)

Dewey Lawrence, senior academic advisor in the University Studies Program (USP) spent a week in training and testing and is now formally certified in administering and interpreting the MBTI. This assessment instrument is given to every USP student to help the advisors and career exploration faculty members understand how individual students’ differences and preferences may affect their decision when selecting an RIT major. Click here to learn more about the MBTI.

University Studies Starts Two New Traditions

In an effort to continue its student-centered practices, the USP started a meet & greet reception to welcome new internal transfer students to the program and a "Declaration Day" celebration to celebrate students moving on to their final major at RIT. The first meet & greet event was a success and they are eagerly planning the Inaugural Declaration Day Celebration for spring quarter!

Dean’s List Award Earned by Nearly Half of the USP Entering Freshman Class

A resounding 45% of the USP freshman class of 2012 earned the RIT Dean’s List Award. This award is given to students who achieve a quarterly GPA of 3.4 or higher. Students are encouraged to share this news with their families and hometowns through a press release, and are given a letter and certificate from the USP program

The Center for Multidisciplinary Studies

Tom Moran presented "Placards and Hazard Alerts: Adding Visual Communication to an Environmental Communication Class" at the 2012 International Professional Communication Conference, held at the University of Central Florida. His paper appears in the conference proceedings published by the IEEE-Professional Communication Society.

Carol Romanowski presented "Critical Infrastructure Protection and Risk Analysis in the Mid-Size City" (with Jen Schneider, College of Applied Science and Technology) at the IEEE Conference on Technologies for Homeland Security (HST ’12). The conference took place in the greater Boston area, November 13-15. This conference brings together innovators from leading universities, research laboratories, Homeland Security Centers of Excellence, small businesses, system integrators and the end-user community and provides a forum to discuss ideas, concepts and experimental results.

Honors Program

In early December, students hosted "Honors Program: Exposed", a university-wide event that provides an opportunity for anyone to come and ask questions about all things honors, meet the student representatives on the Honors Council, and learn about the happenings of the honors committees. A total of 106 students attended the event.

Honors Program: EXPOSED

Erin Downs, Service Committee Chair and Joan McDonough Steering Committee Chair

Honors Program Council Members

In November, Honors Council vice presidents Stephanie Dymek and Nick De Fiore attended the National Collegiate Honors Council Annual Conference. The five-day conference serves as the focal point for honors experiences nationally and internationally. Nick moderated the sessions, "Honors Students Do Honors Teaching" and "Bodies Revealed: A Cadaver Lab Partnership". Stephanie attended sessions on honors study abroad intersessions, alumni outreach initiatives and program assessment methods.

Honors Professional Engagement

Business Honors Students Visit Local Security Software Company

In November, honors students from the E. Philip Saunders College of Business visited Lenel Systems International in Pittsford, New York. Lenel is a unit of United Technologies Corporation (UTC). The company develops software, systems and controls to manage security systems, video content analysis, biometric access, smart card applications, and visitor management systems for worldwide corporate and government security customers in the aerospace and building systems industries. Students had the opportunity to tour the facilities and spoke with company representatives, including RIT alumni, in the areas of finance, technology, sales, operations, quality, and human resources, as well as Lenel president,Joe Kirmser.

GCCIS Honors Students Visit Google in Pittsburgh

In October, honors students, advocates and advisors from the B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences (GCCIS) visited Google’s offices in Pittsburgh, Pa. They met with alumni and employees to learn about working for the web giant. More than 30 students from interactive games and media, computer science, information technology, and software engineering explored future co-op opportunities, learned about various positions available at the company, and discussed current projects at Google. The trip is part of an initiative by the Golisano College faculty "to expose undergraduate students to dynamic computing companies and the range of career opportunities in computing". Excerpted from the GCCIS website: http://www.gccis.rit.edu/honors-students-visit-pittsburgh-google-offices

GCCIS honors students travel to the Pittsburgh Google offices

Undergraduate Research

Nicole Arroyo (College of Science graduate, 2012), honors post-baccalaureate and past president of the honors program, presented a poster at the 2012 Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) in San Jose, Calif. ABRCMS is the largest professional conference of its kind in the nation. The organization encourages underrepresented minority students to pursue advanced training in the biomedical and behavioral sciences, including science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines

Community Service

In October, honors students fashioned beads, necklaces and bracelets recycled from plastic bags, magazines and candy wrappers. The sales from these crafts benefitted the World Wildlife Fund. The volunteer activity was organized by Lauren Samar. In November, honors students volunteered with the CANstruction Project to build sculptures of canned goods displayed at the Bausch and Lomb indoor Winter Garden. The canned goods were purchased by local engineers and architects. In December, the students answered letters written to Santa from local children. College of Health Sciences and Technology honors students also made Christmas cards for the families of the children in the pediatric unit at Rochester General Hospital and visited the children to give out the cards.

Institute Advising Office

Academic advisors across the university are heavily focused on the delivery of individual advising plans, or IAP’s. The IAP is designed to assist a student who will transition into semesters by mapping their path to graduation. A few advisors have even gone so far as to make IAP Halloween costumes that they wore to our Academic Affairs staff breakfast!

Left to right: Megan Fritts, Betty Hillman, Matt Lake, academic advisors for the departments of computing security, and information sciences and technologies in GCCIS.

Student Learning Outcomes Assessment

Success Story: RIT’s General Education Assessment
TaskStream, a provider of cloud-based tools for learning assessment, selected RIT to tell its own unique story on how we plan, archive, manage, and use the results of our assessment related to our general education student learning outcomes. Click here to read the story

Assessment Spotlight: BS New Media Design, College of Imaging Arts and Science
RIT’s academic programs are implementing assessment plans as part of our continuous improvement efforts. We are pleased to highlight an example from CIAS of a program that demonstrates four of the best practices in assessment:

  1. an observable and measurable outcome
  2. a performance-based assessment method and scoring guide
  3. a clear achievement benchmark, and
  4. demonstration of "closing the loop" which entails using the results to be reflective about decisions related to program (curriculum, instruction, or assessment) improvements.

University Writing Program

Writing Center Inquiry Projects
Excitement is building in the Writing Center since joining the University Writing Program in July. Incorporating Writing Center theory and pedagogy, the entire team of fourteen Writing Center consultants has begun inquiry projects assessing the current status of, or opportunities for growth and development with regard to reading, data analysis and peer observation. Additionally, we are designing new class-based outreach, building capacity for a Writing Fellows Program, enhancing the utilization of the Online Writing Lab (OWL), and pursuing strategic collaborations with campus partnerships.

"The Journey" by Saul Borisov

We have recently discovered that the dramatic, 17-foot tall weavings displayed in our space are masterworks by the important, highly-regarded artist and experimental weaver, Saul Borisov. We invite you to come in and admire them! To learn more about Borisov and his work, Click here

Guest Lecturer Dr. Paul Matsuda
Thursday, January 31, 4:30 p.m., Dr. Paul Kei Matsuda, professor of English and director of Second Language Writing at Arizona State University, will deliver a lecture, "The Future of Mass Literacy for a Multilingual Generation," in the University Gallery. On Friday morning, Dr. Matsuda will conduct an interactive workshop on "Working with Multilingual Writers." The week of January 21st, a reading group was held for those interested in Dr. Matsuda’s work. For more information, to register for the workshop, or to receive related readings, please contact David Martins, director of UWP, at dsmgla@rit.edu.

Critical Thinking

The faculty advisory group for the Eugene H. Fram chair in Applied Critical Thinking (ACT) will resume meeting this month. One of their key tasks will be to consider the current working definition of ACT in our RIT mission statement which states ACT is "learning to think in a disciplined and evaluative manner, to analyze and interpret the processes by which various claims are made and reliable conclusions are reached." Definitions of ACT are remarkably varied, and there is very little nationwide consensus. The ACT group has been reading Stephen D. Brookfield’s 2012 book, Teaching for Critical Thinking, as they reflect upon our guiding principles and future goals for this significant new initiative.