Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Developing a Typology of Branch Campuses, Phase 2

All of us interested in branch campuses recognize that we need more research, if we are to develop a good description of typical variations in academic and administrative practice. For that reason, the NABCA executive committee created a research committee, to encourage and support studies that help inform its membership.

For several years, Phyllis Bebko, at Florida Atlantic University, chaired that committee. It’s new chair is Jack Krueger, at Adelphi University. Among other activities, the research committee conducted a survey of branch campuses that was reported in the recent special issue of Metropolitan Universities Journal. Abstracts from the issue can be checked out at www.cumuonline.org/muj.aspx.

The specific article is titled “Developing a Typology of Branch Campuses, and it is by Phyllis Bebko and Dennis Huffman. If you are interested, you can purchase the special issue of the journal, or you can purchase this or any other individual article that interests you.

I am writing about this, because Phase 2 of this research is now available online, and I’d like to encourage anyone who sees this blog to go to the web page and submit a response. It is not necessary to have participated in the previous survey nor to consider yourself a NABCA member, in order to respond. The survey is only 15 questions long and will take very little time, especially in comparison to the benefit we will receive from a strong number of responses.

To complete the survey, simply go to www.nabca.net. You will see a link on the right side of the page that asks you to “assist our research team.” While you are on the site, you also can find information about the next conference, in Orlando, from April 11-14, 2012, and you will see a link to submit a program proposal, if you are so inclined. If you haven’t already done so, you also can click on the Facebook symbol and “like” NABCA, as another way to stay connected.

NABCA—Your full-service connection to branch campus colleagues!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Special Journal Issue on Branch Campus Topics

If you are involved with branch campuses, then you may want to know about the most recent issue of Metropolitan Universities Journal. It is Volume 22, Number 1, and it is dedicated to branch campuses. It includes ten articles on a variety of topics.

Many of the authors are friends and colleagues of mine, and I know they carry both a strong commitment to the branch mission, as well as valuable experience they chose to share. I have an article on the future of branch campuses, but others provide relevant case studies and survey results that will be helpful to readers.

Ken Shaw’s case study of issues at Florida State University-Panama City captures the challenges of branch leadership as nicely as anything I’ve seen. An article by Norton and Pickus brings attention to what I consider to be a major issue for branch campuses: having the ability to create their own course schedule, in order to meet the needs of their students, and (related) having enough budget control to assure they get those courses.

Articles by gossom and Pelton and by Bebko and Huffman, present new data on leadership and on branch characteristics. Other articles make strong contributions, and I especially like the case elements that enhance the story of branch campuses.

I don’t have space here to describe each article, but you can read the abstracts at www.cumuonline.org/muj.aspx. You also will find information for subscribing to the Journal, ordering a copy of this issue, or even purchasing a copy of individual articles. Incidentally, Metropolitan Universities Journal also dedicated an issue to branch campuses about ten years ago, in Volume 12, Number 2. That issue may also be found on the web site.

One of the consistent themes for those who care about branch campuses is that we need a more developed literature on best practices, as well as more and better research that focuses on branch issues. We all owe a debt to Jack Krueger and Phyllis Bebko for their work to organize and produce this special issue.

On a much sadder note
: NABCA lost one of its founding fathers and an all around great colleague, when Hal Dengerink passed away, September 14. Hal was Chancellor-Emeritus at Washington State University-Vancouver, and he was one of the best thinkers I know about branch campus challenges. In fact, Hal wrote the lead article for the previous Metropolitan Universities Journal issue dedicated to branch campuses. Hal had a great sense of humor, a sense of fun, and a great deal of savvy. He will be missed.