August 2003


keys to continuing academic progress

v                Excellent Faculty

Attract, retain, and reward faculty who are diverse in background and accomplishments and who excel in teaching, scholarship, and public service.

v                Successful Students

Recruit academically talented and diverse undergraduate and graduate students and support their intellectual, cultural, and ethical development as citizens, scholars, and professionals.

v                High Quality, Affordable Education

Provide broad access to a comprehensive array of educational programs that reflect high academic standards, exemplify best practices in teaching, and encourage discovery-based lifelong learning.

v                Superior Research and Service

Enhance research and service programs that build on our institutional and interdisciplinary strengths and extend our leadership as a state-assisted land-grant, sea-grant, urban-grant, and space-grant university.

v                Outstanding Facilities

Provide the infrastructure and tools required for sustained academic success, including state-of-the-art libraries, technology, classrooms, laboratories, equipment, and residence halls.

prioritizing in four mission areas:
undergraduate education
graduate education
 research and scholarship
public, community, and professional service



1.   Remain the institution of choice in the mid-Atlantic region with continuing improvement in student academic qualifications and diversity.

·        Retain a freshman admissions target of 3,200-3,400, with an admissions profile for 2007 of 23,000 applications, a 40% admit rate, and a yield rate above 35%.

·        Improve the alignment of undergraduate enrollment distribution and instructional resource distribution, particularly faculty distribution.

·        Review and revise undeclared student status through improved matching of students and majors on admission, improved early advisement for new students, creation of  “college” majors, and establishment of a university studies option.

·        Maintain a freshman retention rate above the national average for highly selective institutions and seek to achieve a 90% rate.

·        Maintain a graduation rate above the national average for highly selective institutions and seek to achieve a 75% five-year rate.

·        Increase minority and international enrollment, with retention and graduation rates consistent with university-wide averages.

2.   Provide undergraduate education that ranks among the finest provided by any public university in America.

·        Fully implement all recommended general education reforms by 2005.

·        Expedite entry into Life/Pathways courses and similar opportunities for all students.

·        Expand the Undergraduate Research program with extended college and program collaborations so that all students have the opportunity to participate.

·        Make a study abroad experience available to every student and expand study abroad options.

·        Expand programs of international/intercultural education, such as America and the Global Community, The Global Agenda, discovery abroad research, visiting scholars and speakers.  

·        Strengthen the University Advisement Center, improve web-based advisement resources, and increase faculty participation in undergraduate student mentoring.

·        Expand and integrate written and oral communications learning opportunities throughout the curriculum.

·        Actively promote university-wide service learning programs, and make a service learning opportunity available to all students.

·        Selectively expand support for interdisciplinary study options.

·        Provide a capstone experience for all students that may include internships and other practical field experiences as well as special courses and projects.

·        Strengthen the Honors Program; pursue a new model that exemplifies leadership in the development and adoption of best practices for UD undergraduate education and that signals a new partnership between the Honors Program and the contributing Departments.

·        Expand Winter Session options and enrollment; better incorporate Winter Session in departmental academic planning.

·        Review and improve the overall design and delivery of the Parallel Program; pursue expanded articulation agreements with Delaware Technical and Community College.

·        Support services that improve employment and professional career opportunities for UD graduates.

3.   Extend national leadership in instructional innovation and improvement.

·        Establish and institutionalize the Office of Undergraduate Studies as the focal point for continuous improvement in undergraduate education.

·        Extend UD international leadership in active/discovery learning (e.g., PBL). 

·        Extend faculty and student utilization of new instructional technologies; establish WebCT course support sites for most courses by 2007.

·        Implement continuing outcomes assessment of instructional innovation.

·        Extend UD’s leadership roles for programs of undergraduate research, study abroad, and service learning. 

·        Continue to improve facilities that support excellence in undergraduate education, including library renovations to improve access and use, laboratories, classrooms, and performing arts studies that support discovery-based learning.


1.   Strengthen graduate programs in areas of demonstrated comparative advantage and areas that address state, regional, and national needs.

·        Define explicitly the criteria for success in every graduate program, clarifying the different expectations for research-oriented and professional programs and applying those criteria consistently.

·        Review the effectiveness of all graduate programs on a regularly scheduled basis through the Academic Program Review and Accreditation Review processes.

·        Invest selectively in interdisciplinary graduate programs in areas of demonstrated comparative advantage and community need.

·        Explore new graduate program options, including expanded undergraduate/graduate “4 plus 1” options, targeted distance education programs, a 5-year BA/MAT program, coordinated MA/MS-PhD options, and more extensive international collaborations.  

2.   Remain an institution of choice for high quality graduate students.

·        Define and meet qualitative and quantitative enrollment targets and student profile objectives for all graduate programs.

·        Sustain a stable university-wide graduate admissions profile with 6,000 annual applications, a 30% admit rate, and a yield rate over 50%. 

·        Increase the diversity of the graduate student population by implementing program-based plans to enhance diversity.

·        Improve graduation rates, time to degree completion, and job placement of graduates, with specific objectives defined by each program.

3.   Improve University, college, and departmental services that support excellence in graduate education.

·        Maintain national best practices in electronic graduate admissions procedures.

·        Improve graduate student recruitment strategies, including web-based recruitment and the identification of feeder schools, for each graduate program.

·        Assist graduate programs in providing improved support for the job placement of graduates.

·        Increase graduate stipend rates and floors and then incrementally increase graduate stipends at the same rate as salaries, maintaining graduate stipends at nationally competitive levels.

·        Improve recognition for faculty excellence in graduate supervision and instruction. 

·        Improve campus-wide coordination of services for graduate students.


1.   Improve productivity in University’s research and scholarly programs.

·        Continue to increase the level of externally sponsored research, with a target increase of 50% over the FY01 level by 2007.

·        Improve productivity in departmentally sponsored research; strengthen assessment and support higher levels of performance.  

·        Strengthen start-up and pilot support for scholarship and research in selected areas of priority, such as the international research awards program.

2.   Enhance interdisciplinary programs in areas of comparative advantage and state, regional, and national need.

Possible examples include the following:

q       Biotechnology and the Life Sciences

q       American Art, African American Art, and Material Culture

q       Information Technology: Science, Technology and Management

q       Early Learning/Early Experience Research

q       Nano-science and Nano-technology

q       Environmental, Marine, and Energy Sciences and Policy

q       International and Cross-Cultural Research

q       Corporate Governance

3.   Strengthen the support and recognition for excellence in scholarship and research.

·        Increase the number of endowed named professorships to 90 by 2005 and to 100 by 2007.

·        Fully implement the research/scholarship semester for assistant professors.

·        Better recognize and celebrate scholarly achievement through named professor inaugural lectures, University faculty forums, and student research conferences.

·        Continue to implement national best practices in the area of grants and contracts administration at the University, college, and departmental levels.

·        Improve policy and procedures to address issues of intellectual property, equity interest ventures, and commercialization of new ideas and procedures.

·        Sustain UD’s leadership role in the transition to the “electronic” library.

·        Strengthen the development of the Delaware Biotechnology Institute (DBI) and improve the mutual support between DBI and participating colleges and departments.

·        Create a University Museum to coordinate and expand the development and use of UD art collections and related programs including the Paul Jones Collection, the University Gallery, the Inuit Art Collection, the Museum Studies Program, the Center for American Material Culture, and the Winterthur Program.

·        Better integrate computer and network services into the research and scholarship activities of the University. 

·        Continue to improve facilities that support increasing research and scholarly productivity, focusing on areas of University-wide priority such as the life sciences, marine sciences, advanced materials science and engineering, and early experience/translational research.


1.   Strengthen UD leadership as Delaware’s land-grant, sea-grant, urban-grant, and space-grant institution.

·        Strengthen partnerships in areas of University priority and responsibility such as state and local economic development, pre-K to16 education, effectiveness of governmental services, delivery of non-profit services, professional development for business, education, and health professionals, and improvement in agricultural and environmental practices.

·        Inventory and better coordinate service programs and partnerships on and off campus; improve inter-college collaboration and cooperation in the design and delivery of service programs.

·        Develop new institutional models for service that are responsive to the evolving needs of the constituencies we serve, such as the Early Learning Center, Center for Corporate Governance, new organization for Cooperative Extension, and the Center for Disabilities Studies.

2.   Improve the integration of service values in the educational and research missions within and across the colleges.

·        More fully incorporate service learning in undergraduate education; improve the use of service learning as an educational method.

·        Selectively extend life-long learning and distance learning programs in areas of comparative advantage and state, regional, and national need. 

·        Increase the number of service-oriented undergraduate and graduate assistantships and internships. 

·        Improve the availability and delivery of service-oriented instructional and professional development programs in such areas as education, nursing, human services, business, and agricultural sciences.

3.   Enhance the support and recognition for excellence in public, community, and professional service.

·        Establish endowed professorships that recognize excellence in public, community, and professional service and the integration of service with teaching and research.

·        Establish University Excellence-in-Service Awards

·        Regularly conduct program reviews of the performance and achievements of service programs. 

·        Continue to improve facilities that support increased service responsibilities.