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Ohio State University logo Academic Plan

2006 Update

2005 Update

2004 Update

2003 Update

Past Updates


Academic Plan Table of Contents

  1. Preface
  2. Executive Summary
  3. The Ohio State University Vision
  4. Setting the Stage: Context and Strategies for the Academic Plan
  5. Strategies and Initiatives:
    1. Build a World-Class Faculty
    2. Develop Academic Programs that Define Ohio State as the Nation's Leading Public Land-Grant University
    3. Improve the Quality of the Teaching and Learning Environment
    4. Enhance and Better Serve the Student Body
    5. Create a More Diverse University Community
    6. Help Build Ohio's Future
  6. Facilitating Actions:
    1. Obtain Increased State Support
    2. Improve the Organization and Delivery of Instruction
    3. Increase Organizational Flexibility
    4. Improve the Faculty Work Environment
  7. Continuing Activities
  8. Resources
  9. The Academic Scorecard
  10. Print Out The Academic Plan (pdf file)
  11. Create A Diverse University Community

Executive Summary

The Ohio State University aspires to be among the world's truly great universities - advancing the well-being of the people of Ohio and the global community through the creation and dissemination of knowledge. Ohio needs a great teaching and research university for a rich flow of ideas, innovation, and graduates from a wide variety of disciplines. Ohio also needs a great university to be what The New York Times has called a "revving economic engine" that spurs strategic growth in the new Information Age economy.

Any review of the comparative data makes it clear that our focus must be on building academic excellence. For while the University needs to continuously improve in many areas, we will never be a great university without dramatically enhancing the reality and perception of our teaching and learning as well as our research and scholarship - and without enhancing the service activities that flow from our excellence in these endeavors.

Over recent years, we have focused on four core elements: Becoming a national leader in the quality of our academic programs; being universally recognized for the quality of the learning experience we offer our students; creating an environment that truly values and is enriched by diversity; and expanding the land-grant mission to address our society's most compelling needs.

These core elements are reflected in the six strategies and 14 supporting initiatives that follow. While the University will undertake many more initiatives over the next five years, these are considered the most transformational.

Strategy: Build a World-Class Faculty

1. Over the next three to five years, recruit at least 12 faculty members who have attained or have the potential to attain the highest honors in their disciplines, concentrating these appointments in areas of strategic focus.

2. Implement a faculty recruitment, retention, and development plan - including a competitive, merit-based compensation structure - that is in line with our peer institutions.

Strategy: Develop Academic Programs that Define Ohio State as the Nation's Leading Public Land-Grant University.

3. Continue the Strategic Investment approach by competitively funding initiatives that build programmatic strength and open new fields. Build on existing capabilities and capture opportunities specific to Ohio State and to Ohio. Maintain ongoing multidisciplinary initiatives where appropriate and develop new initiatives that draw on University-wide strengths to attack major problems of the next quarter century. Create multidisciplinary centers that can attract additional faculty in key areas, helping reduce student-faculty ratios in high-demand fields.

4. Significantly increase space dedicated to funded research beyond what is currently planned. Include a multidisciplinary building devoted to high-quality research space as well as to office and meeting space.

Strategy: Enhance the Quality of the Teaching and Learning Environment.

5. Transform the Library into a 21st century Information Age center within the next five to ten years.

6. Upgrade the quality of our classroom pool space and enhance the appearance of the campus facilities and grounds.

7. Provide faculty, staff, and students with the latest technology tools for leadership in teaching, research, and career development within the next five years.

Strategy: Enhance and Better Serve the Student Body.

8. Within the next three years, make admissions to Ohio State selective throughout the year for new freshmen and for all transfer students.

9. Create a rich educational environment for undergraduates. Increase course accessibility, reduce class sizes, and establish at least ten scholars programs within five years - expanding opportunities for students to live with those who share common interests and enhancing students' academic success and sense of community. Provide academic programming, advising, and career counseling within these communities.

10. Provide ample need-based and merit-based aid for undergraduates and a competitive financial aid and fellowship support package for graduate and professional students to improve Ohio State's graduate and professional matriculation rate.

Strategy: Create a Diverse University Community.

11. Hire at least five to ten women and five to ten minority faculty at a senior level each year for five years through the Faculty Hiring Assistance Program (FHAP) and other initiatives.

12. Recruit, support, and retain to graduation larger numbers of academically able minority students.

Strategy: Help Build Ohio's Future.

13. Significantly strengthen the scope and effectiveness of our commitment to P-12 public education, with a special focus on the education of underserved children and youth. In so doing, work with the State of Ohio and selected local school districts. This initiative will be a University-wide partnership, with the College of Education in the lead college role.

14. Become the catalyst for the development of Ohio's technology-based economy. Increase collaborations with the private sector to enhance research, successfully transfer University technology, and provide experiential learning and career opportunities for students.

To successfully implement this ambitious agenda, the University must take four Facilitating Actions: Obtain increased state support, improve the organization and delivery of instruction, increase organizational flexibility, and improve the faculty work environment. The Plan identifies specific steps to meet these needs.

Over the next five years, the University expects to invest in the range of $750 million in new and reallocated resources to implement this plan, with spending scaled up or down depending upon actual funding. The Plan identifies potential sources for the needed revenues. A set of strategic indicators will help measure our progress.

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