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Institutional Research, Assessment and Planning

Office of Institutional Research, Assessment and Planning (IRAP)

The mission of the Office of Institutional Research, Assessment and Planning (IRAP) is to:
Inform the institution's decision-making and planning processes and participate in the guidance of the institution's strategic direction.

The IRAP office supports programs and school leadership by providing usable, useful, and timely information about its stakeholders – such as students, faculty, and staff. The IRAP office comprises two staff. The Director, Elizabeth Trebow, PhD, was appointed to the position June 1, 2011. She has 20 years of research and program evaluation experience. Previously Dr. Trebow was the Chair of the Organizational Management & Consulting Doctoral program at Phillips Graduate Institute. The department also includes Research Analyst Jamie Carruth, MA, who comes to Phillips with three years direct experience in research and data analysis, working across departments at an academic institution.

There are three primary strategic goals for IRAP:

  1. Support institutional decision-making with relevant data, analysis and reports
  2. Support academic program decision-making with relevant data, analysis and reports
  3. Provide research and assessment support for institutional and program activities

These goals align with the institutional strategic priorities and the institutional strategic plan. The IRAP office is of the primary source of data collection, analysis and reporting for the implementation of educational and training programs, institutional development, and strategic planning.


The first goal for IRAP is to provide support to the institution for strategic and resource planning, as well as report required data to government and accrediting bodies. Information collected, analyzed and/or reported includes student information related to retention, time to graduation, diversity, and other demographic information that might predict student performance.

Data related to the institution’s strategic plan (e.g. environmental scans, needs assessments) are sometimes collected by students in the Organizational Management and Consulting program under the direction of IRAP. Other data collection activities are conducted on an ad hoc basis with input from school leadership and program chairs.

IRAP personnel facilitated the 2009-2011 strategic planning processes for the institute’s Mission, Vision and Values and will be an integral part of the committee that monitors the progress of that plan.

IRAP is responsible for the conduct of Campus Climate surveys for students, faculty and staff

Objective Strategy

Inform and monitor strategic planning with data collected from external and internal sources

  • Facilitate internal stakeholders in collecting information for mission, vision and values
  • Direct collection of external data
  • Collect and report data for monitoring progress
  • Collect and present data on strategic plan implementation

Support resource planning with data from external and internal sources

  • Conduct needs assessment

Direct data management and analysis as needed to report institutional indicators. 

  • Collect and report data and complete required reports and surveys for:  (a) accrediting bodies; (b) government agencies; (c) school leadership and the Board of Trustees; (d) external community stakeholders

Direct, design and present institutional level surveys.

  • Conduct annual climate surveys for: Climate Surveys for students, faculty, staff and alumni.


On both a regular and as-needed basis, IRAP provides Department Chairs and other program leaders the information they need to plan for their academic or training program.  Data might include: new and continuing student enrollment, time-to-completion, retention, etc. Department and program support might also include surveys with current students, alumni, and/or outside stakeholders, such as placement site supervisors.

Based on Preliminary interviews with Department Chairs and other program leaders, IRAP personnel will begin with defining, collecting, analyzing and reporting factors of student success for each program. This information will be important for the accreditation redesign proposed by WASC, Phillips’ marketing to potential applicants, and for accountability to the community.
The IRAP Research Analyst is responsible for the course evaluation process, beginning with importing the data, determining the surveys to be used, releasing the surveys to student to complete, and ending with notifications to faculty and chairs that the survey is complete, along with links to the results.

The IRAP personnel help coordinate and provide support for the assessment of student learning at the school. At the program level, assessment coordinators work closely with IRAP personnel to help them complete their annual assessments, write their reports, and provide an executive summary of findings to be used in the institutional-level close the loop meeting each year. At the institutional level, IRAP personnel and the VP of Academic Affairs convene an annual close-the-loop session with all faculty members during the faculty orientation and retreat. With input from the VPAA, the director of IRAP writes the final institutional level assessment report.

Program Review is coordinated and supported by IRAP. With the VPAA, the IRAP office generates the outline of Program Review components, instructions for completing the Review, and the template to collect the information for the Review. IRAP also compiles the information.
With faculty and the VPAA, the director of IRAP designs the evaluation rubric or instrument used for annual evaluations of faculty. The results of these evaluations are used with other measures to determine faculty promotions

Objective Strategy

Direct the management and analysis of data as needed to report program level indicators to program chairs and directors

  • Collect, analyze and report graduation, retention, enrollment, yield, diversity, and other success data

Direct, design and present program level surveys and evaluation

  • Coordinate course evaluations
  • Conduct indirect academic program assessment
  • Design faculty evaluation rubric

With the VPAA and Assessment Coordinator, direct the program assessment and review processes at the institutional level and support the processes at the program level

  • Provide technical assistance and support to Assessment Coordinators
  • Design report templates
  • Develop instruction manuals
  • Facilitate monthly AAC Assessment meetings
  • Facilitate and report institution-level closing the loop


IRAP is responsible for the content and dissemination of an institutional Dashboard of information for stakeholders. IRAP engages the Leadership Team in providing suggestions for the Dashboard.

As experts in research and program evaluation, IRAP personnel are a resource to grant applicants who are required to demonstrate program results. In addition, IRAP provides consultation on research projects for faculty and students.

The director of IRAP chairs the Ethical Research Committee, which ensures that research conducted by students and faculty are in compliance with the NIH guidelines for the ethical treatment of human participants in research.

Objective Strategy

Provide data for institutional self-study, including information regarding institutional strengths, values

  • Produce Dashboard of vital school information and statistics
  • Convene data quality control meetings with internal stakeholders

Support school personnel in research and program evaluation.

  • Provide internal consultation and expertise to the institution regarding surveys, research and program evaluation
  • As needed, respond to RFPs regarding program evaluation
  • Design and prepare program evaluation and research proposals and reports as needed

Ethical Research Committee ensures compliance with the ethical treatment of human participants

  • Review research proposals in faculty and student research

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