Quality Enhancement Plan
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About the QEP

A Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) describes a carefully designed and focused course of action intended to significantly enhance student learning. The Morehead State University QEP, entitled CLEAR Thinking, involves providing explicit critical thinking instruction to undergraduate students.

Activities related to the MSU QEP can be divided into two phases. The Development Phase took place from fall 2008 to summer 2011. During this phase, the QEP topic was selected, the plan was developed, the CLEAR Thinking report describing the plan was submitted to SACS, and the plan was approved. The Implementation Phase began in fall 2011 and is ongoing. Most of the information on this website concerns the Implementation phase.

The CLEAR Thinking report signified a transition between phases. The report summarizes the activities that took place during the Development Phase, and it outlined the activities that were to take place during the Implementation Phase.

The report:

  • describes the process used to develop the QEP
  • justifies the focus on critical thinking
  • reviews the literature on critical thinking 
  • states student learning outcomes and describes assessments 
  • describes the organizational structure, resources, and timeline for the plan, and 
  • describes specific actions to be implemented.

Major actions concerned developing and assessing a small scale program of critical thinking instruction, using a small number of sections of First Year Seminar. A pilot study conducted in fall 2013 was to be used to refine materials and practices, and a study conducted in fall 2014 was to compare critical thinking gains in students who did or did not experience the program.

The CLEAR Thinking report was submitted in spring 2011. Revisions requested by SACS were provided in summer 2011, and the plan was approved shortly after. Most of the revisions were rather minor and involved clarifying student learning outcomes, assessments, and budget issues. The one major change involved extending the pilot study phase and advancing the timeline for completion of the pilots and the study: The plan approved by SACS called for pilot studies to be completed in fall 2011 and fall 2012 and for the study to be completed in fall 2013.

QEP personnel are in the process of implementing the revised plan. Nevertheless, the CLEAR Thinking report submitted in spring 2011 remains the single best document for understating the goals of the QEP. The report can be accessed by selecting this link. Though the report and the revised plan provide guidance for implementation of the QEP, features will be added, modified, or dropped as the data dictate.

Though this website primarily concerns QEP Implementation, the following links pull up SACS documents relevant to QEP development and evaluation. 2008 Principles of Accreditation describes accreditation guidelines and includes information relevant to the development as well as evaluation of a QEP. Quality Enhancement Plan Guidelines is a rubric that is used to evaluate a QEP.