Best practices dictate that assessment drives planning, which in turn drives budgeting. Planning cannot begin until the institution has assessed where it is relative to benchmarks set by accrediting bodies, federal and state governments, and the institution’s own aspirations for itself. Benchmarks determine the end-point, and planning serves to address the gap between what the institution is and what it wants to become.
For its part, effective budgeting provides the essential financial and human resources to implement the institution’s plans. A critical component of assessment is determining whether the allocation of resources helped the institution achieve its goals. If not, plans need to be adjusted to make better use of the institution’s resources.
At Utica College, assessment and planning take place at several levels – institutional, divisional, school, and departmental. Both planning and budgeting begin at the institutional level and drive planning at lower levels, with assessment informing planning throughout the College.
Finally, assessment, planning, and budgeting inform and are informed by discussions in four key areas:
- Enrollment management