NMSU Foundations of Excellence
Foundations of Excellence® in the First College Year
An Overview of the Process at NMSU
The Foundations of Excellence is a guided self-study and improvement process that focuses on the entire experience of first-year students at an institution, from an institutional perspective. It is based on nine principles called the Foundational Dimensions® that have been developed to guide measurement and to provide an aspirational model for the complete first-year experience.
This process engages faculty, staff and administrators in a collaborative effort to focus on institutional behavior and create an intentional comprehensive approach to the first-year experience. Extensive quantitative and qualitative research is encouraged in order to design a plan for significant improvements to the first-year experience.
This process was designed and is administered by the Policy Center on the First Year of College under the leadership of Dr. John Gardner and Dr. Betsy Barefoot, and was partially funded by the Lumina Foundation for Education. Additionally, this process has been approved to serve as a “special emphasis” for accreditation under the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
The Foundations of Excellence process was the special emphasis for the Higher Learning Commission Accreditation Visit in Spring 2008.