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Achieving Harmony: Tuning into Practice
Wednesday, June 17 • 1:45pm - 2:45pm
CON03.06 - A meaningful plan: Using a “portfolio of practice” approach to strategic planning in higher education

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Strategic planning has become common practice at universities. Most strategic planning processes, however, are adopted from corporate domains (Ellis, 2010)—with little research evidence to support the efficacy of these models within post-secondary environments. Furthermore, teaching and learning centers have often been at the periphery of centralized strategic planning processes (Gibbs, 2006). Such centers may now find themselves facing requirements to engage in strategic planning without the benefit of established processes that adequately fit their contexts and purposes. The Educational Development Unit at the University of Calgary engaged in a process that explicitly merged collaborative strategic planning techniques, current higher education research (Mueller, 2015), and wisdom of practice (Weimer, 2001) in order to create a living strategic plan. This portfolio of practice approach allows us to reflect on and document our educational development beliefs and practices in an inclusive and collaborative manner, while also creating a research-informed and contextually-driven strategic plan. By the end of this interactive session, participants should be able to: (a) evaluate the portfolio of practice strategic planning model, and (b) adapt components of the model to meet their own institutional contexts. The presenters will provide an overview of the strategic planning process that has been implemented at the Educational Development Unit. Paired and small group discussion will be used to generate ideas about how such a process might be used at participants’ home institutions. The session will conclude with an open-group debrief to critically evaluate this strategic planning approach. 


Ellis, S. E. (2010). Introduction to strategic planning in student affairs: A model for process and elements of a plan. New Directions for Student Services, 132, 5-16. doi: 0.1002/ss.371

Gibbs, G. (2006). Supporting educational development within departments. International Journal for Academic Development, 1(1), 27-37. doi: 10.1080/1360144960010104

Mueller, R. (2015). Do values drive the plan? Investigating the nature and role of organizational values in university strategic planning. Tertiary Education and Management, 21(1). doi: 10.1080/13583883.2014.998270

Weimer, M. (2001). Learning more from the wisdom of practice. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 86, 45-56. doi: 10.1002/tl.15

Speakers
avatar for Robin Alison Mueller (University of Calgary)

Robin Alison Mueller (University of Calgary)

Educational Development Consultant (Faculty), University of Calgary
avatar for Natasha Kenny

Natasha Kenny

Natasha Kenny is Director of the Educational Development Unit in the Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning at the University of Calgary


Wednesday June 17, 2015 1:45pm - 2:45pm
Thompson Room

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