Focusing the Periodic Review Report Effort

Although the Periodic Review Report (PRR) must fully address all of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education’s (MSCHE) Standards and other requirements, every standard and requirement need not be given equal time and effort. In general, greater attention should be devoted to matters important to the institution's success, strategic direction, and areas of risk, with lesser time devoted to less weighty matters.

A focused approach can be guided by among the following questions:

  • What does MSCHE require?
  • What does the institution find important (where is continual improvement most valuable)?
  • In what areas is the institution strong and in what areas does the institution have documented weaknesses?
  • What strategic opportunities and threats would most impact the institution?
  • What resources are available to the institution, what factors (State budget, financial aid, enrollment, etc.) impact those resources, how are those resources deployed?
  • Is resource deployment planned in a strategic fashion and does outcomes-related data lead to adjustments in resource deployment?
  • What areas have been cited most frequently by MSCHE (areas that MSCHE believes are important to an institution’s performance)?

The information related to those questions can be found in:

  • Recommendations and suggestions arising from the decennial review (and an institution’s own appraisal of its challenges)
  • Elements and processes highlighted in follow-up reports (monitoring reports and/or progress letters)
  • MSCHE’s responses to submitted PRR reports
  • An institution’s mission, values, and vision statements
  • An institution’s strategic plan
  • An institution’s financial statements and budget and underlying processes and major assumptions
  • Linkage between planning, resource allocation, and budgeting




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