Mount Mercy academic leadership helps roll out national CAP evaluation

Tom CastleMount Mercy University was selected to serve as the first institution to be evaluated on its adult accelerated programs by the Commission for Accelerated Programs (CAP), an international membership organization serving professionals who lead, teach, and conduct research in accelerated programs in higher education.

Over a two-day period, CAP past chair and co-writer of Quality Standards Dr. Royce Ann Collins met with Mount Mercy administrative leadership, including President Christopher Blake, Interim Assistant Provost and Dean of Adult Programs Tom Castle, and Assistant Dean of Accelerated Programs Colette Atkins, to evaluate the institution’s adult accelerated program during this pilot evaluation.

Colette Atkins“Mount Mercy and its adult accelerated program are truly exemplary in service and support of adult students,” said Collins. “I have visited many accelerated programs and usually find that programs on campus are basically ignored and not welcome. Mount Mercy is different. Mount Mercy’s president has been strategic and innovative with leading a liberal arts college in the 21st century. The excellent assessment plan that incorporates the courses of the accelerated programs demonstrates another layer of commitment to academic rigor of all courses and degree programs.”

Mount Mercy scored high in a number of categories, including:

  • Program Mission and Integrity
  • Leadership and Administration
  • Educational Offerings
  • Assessment and Program Evaluation
  • Faculty Appraisal, Support and Appreciation
  • Student Support Services
  • Planning and Resources
  • Facilities and Auxiliary Services
  • Program Marketing and Recruitment

Castle and Atkins will help roll-out this new evaluation procedure, presenting alongside Collins during the CAP national conference in Denver, Colo. August 2 – 4. The presentation, “Quality Standards for Accelerated Programs: Research & Model for Good Practice” will outline the methods institutions can utilize while undergoing the new evaluation process.

“Mount Mercy has been a pioneer in adult-accelerated learning, so we jumped at the chance to pilot this new program evaluation process," said Castle. "Our goal is to continually improve the quality and service we provide to our students, and this is an important step toward achieving that goal.”

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