Download PDF versionChapter 4 — Meeting Criterion 4 with Purpose: Acquisition, Discovery, and Application of Knowledge

Statement of Criterion: The organization promotes a life of learning for its faculty, administration, staff, and students by fostering and supporting inquiry, creativity, practice, and social responsibility in ways consistent with its mission.


Research achievements 2000–2007

  • 300 new faculty positions created
  • $1.7 billion capital campaign successfully completed
  • $1 billion invested in new and renovated facilities, including $450 million in novel interdisciplinary centers in Purdue's Discovery Park
  • research awards increased from under $200 million in 2001 to over $330 million in 2008
  • the number of research centers more than doubled, to over 110
  • U.S. patents issued to Purdue increased from 11 in 2000 to 33 in 2007

Purdue is a birthplace of ideas, discoveries, inventions, and innovations. The University is proud of its long and storied reputation in its historical signature areas of engineering, science, and agriculture, while placing a high value on the acquisition, discovery, and application of knowledge across a wide range of academic disciplines.

By all measures, Purdue is a highly-regarded research university, yet it strives to be even better. An alignment of circumstances in 2000 provided an unprecedented opportunity to reach closer to that goal. With a new president assuming the helm, and prompted by clear recommendations set forth in the 1999–2000 NCA accreditation review report [1], Purdue set in motion a new strategy for enhancing its research activity and reputation. In November 2001, Purdue adopted a strategic plan based on a vision to become a preeminent university, "advancing quality in all areas while leading the world in the basic and applied sciences and engineering, and improving society at home and abroad" [2].

The central goal for the acquisition, discovery, and application of knowledge outlined in the 2001–2007 strategic plan was to "achieve and sustain preeminence in discovery." Accordingly, Purdue set the following specific goals:

  • gaining recognition as a world leader in the basic and applied sciences, engineering, and other technological endeavors;
  • aligning the discovery agenda with state, national, and global needs and interests;
  • conducting research and promoting scholarship that is significant and impactful, across a wide range of disciplines;
  • raising awareness of issues of citizenship and acculturation, and enhancing historic, literary, social, economic, and global perspectives; and
  • providing a stimulating and supportive state-of-the-art infrastructure that includes informational, technical, facility, and human resources.

A specific plan of action for achieving preeminence required a general assessment of Purdue's standing among research universities, followed by an objective internal review of its own research capabilities and resources. From these reviews, [3] and many strategic planning think-tank sessions, Purdue recognized that it must increase its research productivity. Specific strategies identified as essential for achieving this goal included:

  • creating a culture that encourages, recognizes, and expects research excellence;
  • substantially increasing sponsored research funds;
  • recruiting and expanding a diverse, world-class faculty;
  • enhancing programs of support for career development, success, and retention of these faculty;
  • facilitating the establishment of large, interdisciplinary programs and signature research areas;
  • maintaining, improving, and creatively expanding physical facilities that support research activity; and
  • vigorously pursuing financial resources to support faculty recruitment, retention, and research infrastructure.

This chapter describes Purdue's progress toward preeminence in research since the creation and culmination of the 2001–2007 strategic plan and through the early stages of development and implementation of the 2008–2014 strategic plan. One of the lasting hallmarks of this work is the replacement of the word research with discovery, which better expresses the breadth and depth of research, scholarship, and creative activity and recognizes the role of all disciplines in expanding the realms of knowledge and applying that knowledge to the betterment of society.

Core Component 4a: The organization demonstrates, through the actions of its board, administrators, students, faculty, and staff, that it values a life of learning.

Purdue has many noteworthy accomplishments that show evidence of its commitment to learning and the associated acquisition, discovery, and application of knowledge. This section will highlight the University's growth in discovery through examples of its renowned research, and the creative activities and educational programs that highlight this growth.

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Research Accomplishments and Reputation

The strategic plan completed in 2007 under the leadership of President Martin C. Jischke dramatically transformed the research environment at Purdue. Since 2000, 300 new faculty positions were created, state-of-the-art research facilities have been constructed, and essential infrastructure and support services for research have been added. Perhaps the most ambitious project was the creation of Discovery Park, a $450 million visionary endeavor designed to bring innovation through collaborative and interdisciplinary research [4].

Internal and external reviews, conducted in 2000 in preparation for developing the University's first strategic plan, concluded that overall funding of sponsored research was less than would be expected given the size and quality of the faculty. In comparison to its peers, there was also very little interdisciplinary research. The only major interdisciplinary research program then at Purdue was the National Institutes of Health Cancer Center, housed in Hansen Hall, the only interdisciplinary research building on campus at the time.

A major goal of the 2001–2007 strategic plan was to markedly increase the level of sponsored research, with an emphasis on interdisciplinary research. This was brought to life in the form of Discovery Park [5], which was conceived as a place where basic scientists would work together with scholars to address new areas of science, such as nano-medicine, tissue engineering, and healthcare engineering. This was to be done with an overlay of applied information technology, to enable researchers to address complex science and business issues, and an underlay of entrepreneurship, to encourage rapid technology transfer and commercialization.

Discovery Park (DP) was launched in 2001, when a proposal describing the concept was funded by the Lilly Endowment at a level of $26 million over three years. The first four DP centers were the Bindley Bioscience Center, the Birck Nanotechnology Center, the e-Enterprise Center, and the Burton D. Morgan Entrepreneurship Center. The growth of Discovery Park during its first two years was significant. Shortly after receiving the grant, several donors provided lead gifts totaling more than $100 million for buildings to house the first four centers. Two additional centers were launched: the Discovery Learning Research Center, charged with creating opportunities for students at all levels to be involved in Discovery Park projects, and the Center for Advanced Manufacturing, charged with helping offset the loss of traditional manufacturing jobs in Indiana by creating new opportunities to develop high-technology industries in the state and beyond.

At the time of the original proposal for Discovery Park, President Jischke promised the Lilly Endowment a four-fold increase on the initial $26 million investment during the three year course of the grant. By 2003, DP was already more than a $200 million research enterprise, leading to an additional $25 million Lilly Endowment grant. About half of the new money was used to endow the existing centers, with the remainder offered in a campus-wide competition to launch four additional, new centers. Altogether, 53 groups of faculty submitted pre-proposals for new centers. From these, a faculty review team identified 10 to submit full proposals, which resulted in the next four DP centers: the Energy Center, the Center for the Environment, the Cyber Center, and the Oncological Sciences Center. The Regenstrief Center for Healthcare Engineering was created as the eleventh DP center in 2008. In 2009, several of the centers graduated out of Discovery Park and additional centers were coalesced for administrative efficiency. Therefore the number of centers is now reduced and may continue to evolve as the new strategic plan is implemented.

Discovery Park is an integral part of the Office of the Vice President for Research, with the DP executive director reporting to this vice president. DP has had substantial success in attracting sponsored research. Figure 4-1 shows a steady increase in sponsored awards over the early period of its establishment. While this figure represents the system-wide total for Discovery Park, the fraction attributable to regional campuses is very small. The parallel graph illustrates the effect that DP sponsored award success has had on the entire West Lafayette campus research enterprise.

Figure 4-1. The Relationship of the Growth of Sponsored Awards through Discovery Park and the West Lafayette Campus (awards in millions of dollars)

Figure 4-1. The  Relationship of the Growth of Sponsored Awards through Discovery Park and the  West Lafayette Campus (awards in millions of dollars)

Source: Office of the Vice President for Research

Discovery Park, situated on roughly 40 acres on the southwest corner of campus, has significantly expanded Purdue's physical research infrastructure. Current facilities have added 185,000 assignable square feet of laboratory, office, and classroom space. More than 1,000 faculty members and researchers from across campus and across disciplines are working on DP projects, using some of the most advanced facilities and equipment at any university. New research equipment in DP is valued at approximately $27 million. Nearly 3,000 students are working on projects with faculty in DP, and another 250 graduate students have offices there.

DP also has a very positive impact on the academic units' research capacity and is an active partner in recruiting new research-focused faculty to Purdue. Since its inception, DP contributed more than $6 million to faculty startup packages, provided nearly $3 million in cost shares for research proposals and equipment grants, and expended more than $4.8 million in the form of interdisciplinary seed grants to support the initial phases of new investigation.

A primary engagement goal of DP has been to serve as an engine for Indiana's economic growth. Together with the Purdue Research Park and Research Foundation, Discovery Park has helped facilitate the launch of at least 30 new companies [6].

"Purdue University and the Research Park provide three essential ingredients to the development of high-technology companies. It assists start-ups in getting access to capital, and provides specialized state-of-art research facilities and access to a highly-educated, university trained workforce. Endocyte's progress would not be possible without our partners at Purdue, Discovery Park, and the Research Park."

—Ron Ellis, president, Endocyte

Physical facilities on the rest of the campus have also been expanded, further supporting growth in the acquisition, discovery, and application of knowledge. This expansion includes the Richard and Patricia Lawson Computer Science Building, Wayne T. and Mary T. Hockmeyer Hall of Structural Biology, Jerry S. Rawls Hall of Management, Yue-Kong Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts, Neil Armstrong Hall of Engineering, Forney Hall of Chemical Engineering, and Martin C. Jischke Hall of Biomedical Engineering. Since 2000, Purdue has added 265,000 square feet of space dedicated to discovery and 476,000 square feet for multi-mission activities.

Since 1999, Purdue has also reinvested in the improvement of core research facilities. These renovations have taken place in every college/school, campus-wide. In 2005, the Department of Communication in the College of Liberal Arts renovated a research laboratory to include an experimental room housing 10 separate computer kiosks and a control room where researchers can observe participants through a one-way mirror. Each computer is equipped with audio headsets and Media Lab/DirectRT research design software that allows researchers to construct questionnaires, multi-media experiments, and millisecond reaction time tasks. The laboratory is also equipped with a computer dedicated exclusively to various physiological measures, and two digital video cameras equipped with high-end microphones that deliver research-quality audio.

In the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, the quality of research space was improved significantly through two National Center for Research Resources — National Institutes of Health construction grants (awarded in 1999 and 2000). Under this program, more than 20,000 square feet of laboratory space was completely renovated, resulting in new research and office areas for more than 12 investigators in the departments of Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology and Industrial and Physical Pharmacy. The additional space in both the students' offices and the laboratory has enabled research groups to achieve the "critical mass" required to drive a large number of competitive research projects, and this increase in personnel has further enhanced the laboratory's funding profile and productivity. The renovation has also enhanced departmental capabilities by providing additional space for equipment shared by multiple principle investigators.

The Clinical Discovery Laboratory (CDL) is a multidisciplinary laboratory for preclinical studies within the University, operated by the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences. The CDL was remodeled during the 2006-2007 academic year, upgrading the facilities to Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International standards and increasing the CDL's capacity by making it possible to conduct two or three simultaneous studies.

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Sponsored Program Activity

Our nation is experiencing a defining moment in its history with the number and complexity of national and global challenges being addressed. In conjunction with our national economic stimulus initiative, federal, state, and local governments are poised to invest billions of dollars in new science, engineering, and education activities that will benefit educational institutions, including Purdue. Some of the targeted areas receiving considerable attention include:

  • life and health sciences;
  • energy, environment, and sustainability;
  • security, defense, and space sciences;
  • cyber/information technology; and
  • science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.

These broad areas of national interest align very well with the University's disciplinary and interdisciplinary research expertise. Work in these areas by Purdue researchers has helped increase sponsored program activity to new levels. Faculty, staff, and students have competed successfully for research funds from a number of federal agencies — including the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health — from state and local governments, and from private businesses and foundations.

As shown in Figure 4-2, in fiscal year 2007–2008, the University system received sponsored program support totaling approximately $333 million [7]. This continues a robust upward trend, with awards more than doubling since 1999. Federal agencies continue to be the primary source of funding, with the Department of Health and Human Services — National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation being Purdue's top sponsors. These trends by sponsor are also illustrated by Table 4-1.

Figure 4-2. Total System-wide Research Awards over Time

Figure 4-2.  Total System-wide Research Awards over Time

Source: Office of the Vice President for Research

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Table 4-1. Research Awards by Sponsor

Table 4-1.  Research Awards by Sponsor

Source: Office of the Vice President for Research

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Table 4-2 shows that all of the University's ten colleges/schools are actively contributing to the discovery mission. The colleges of Engineering, Science, and Agriculture generate approximately 59 percent of all external funds. The funding patterns shown in Figure 4-3 demonstrate that full professors receive the greatest proportion of the award dollars. This reflects the role of senior leadership in research.

Table 4-2. Research Awards by College/School for 2007–2008

Table 4-2.  Research Awards by College/School for 2007–2008

Source: Office of the Vice President for Research

Figure 4-3. 2007–2008 West Lafayette Campus Research Awards by Investigator Position and Rank

Figure 4-3.  2007–2008 West Lafayette Campus Research Awards by Investigator Position and  Rank

Source: Office of the Vice President for Research

In order to compete effectively at the national and international levels, faculty members are forming interdisciplinary research teams that have a center or institute focus. The numbers of grants representing individual faculty have declined over the past five years.  As strategic research and scholarship areas, such as those evolving in Discovery Park, are identified and developed at the University, faculty are forming large, multi-investigator, interdisciplinary research groups to compete more effectively for grant funds. This trend has been accompanied by an increased submission of large infrastructure grant proposals, devoted to building and renovating research space and funding large instrumentation cores, to the federal government. The numbers of proposals submitted to agencies and requested funding levels continue to increase, reflecting the potential for growth in awards received by the University. Obtaining external funding is paramount in Purdue's quest to provide students with outstanding scholarship opportunities and raise its research reputation and status while fostering a world-class learning environment. Table 4-3 shows that Purdue ranked eleventh in a 2007 comparison with the research expenditures of 14 peer institutions. Although Purdue is making progress in amounts of sponsored program funding relative to its peers, a significant gap still remains. Current research activities should help close the gap toward the University's goal of reaching a position in the middle of this peer group.

Table 4-3. Institutional Peers — External Funding Level Comparison

Table 4-3.  Institutional Peers - External Funding Level Comparison

Source: Office of Institutional Research

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The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is a joint effort between the Indiana University School of Medicine (IUSM) and Purdue University. Principal participating academic units at Purdue are the School of Veterinary Medicine; College of Consumer and Family Studies; College of Engineering; College of Pharmacy, Nursing, and Health Sciences; and College of Science. The Indiana CTSI seeks to leverage existing expertise in biomedical engineering at Purdue to facilitate rapid technology translation in the state through more direct and functional clinical-technical ties. One CTSI goal in this area is to link Purdue researchers and related medical device design, fabrication, and preclinical studies experts to human health researchers and medical researchers at IUSM.

Other steps Purdue has taken to improve the research environment have also contributed to increasing the amount of sponsored program funds. In 2006, the University initiated several collaborative efforts with the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis by jointly funding seven collaborative pilot projects of $50,000 each. Two of these projects are developing new drugs to treat cancer, with promising results. Encouraged by this success, Purdue has started a similar collaborative program in the life sciences at Indiana University — Bloomington.

The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is a statewide initiative sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for transforming health sciences research and health care delivery. The mission of Indiana CTSI is to increase translational research to improve the health and economy of the state. Its specific goals are to create translational research acceleration programs, support pilot projects, train a new cadre of translational researchers, foster robust community engagement, build comprehensive research resources and technologies, and leverage regional life sciences and health care resources.

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Technology Transfer

Alfred Mann Institute at Purdue

In 2007, the Alfred E. Mann Foundation for Biomedical Engineering provided a $100 million endowment to establish an institute at Purdue University. The Alfred Mann Institute (AMI) enhances Purdue's capabilities to meet the growing need to translate faculty members' discoveries into useful products. This university-private sector partnership is committed to having a significant impact on economic development in Indiana and elsewhere, and on enhancing the well-being of people everywhere. Each year, Purdue's AMI identifies several new biomedical projects with commercialization potential. Its goal is to increase the likelihood that these biomedical technologies are brought to full development with speed and sufficient capital. The AMI brings to bear industry-standard product design and development skills on campus to not only accelerate, but also to substantially enhance the value of those technologies before licensing, sale, and spin-out. Based on the industry experience of the AMI staff and the range of other available consultants with pertinent expertise, the probability of successful commercialization is expected to be increased significantly through these key steps.

The Purdue Research Foundation's (PRF) Office of Technology Commercialization [8] leads efforts to convert discoveries by University faculty into viable commercial entities and enterprises. From 2000 to 2008, Purdue's annual patent applications increased from 71 to 218, and patent issues increased from 11 to 24.

Purdue's Research Park [9] has consistently been recognized for its contributions to the "idea economy." For example, in 2005 the Research Park was awarded the Excellence in Technology Transfer Award by the Association of University Research Parks [10]. In 2006, the Research Park announced a record number of 14 startup companies formed, bringing the total number of businesses in the park to 140, more than 90 of which are in high-tech areas. This dramatic increase in new companies is due, in part, to the activities of Discovery Park and other interdisciplinary centers on campus [11]. A number of Purdue — industry partnerships have been initiated since 2000, including the Chao Center for Industrial Pharmacy and Contract Manufacturing, a partnership with Eli Lilly and Company in the area of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. Another unique partnership was unveiled in 2007 when the Alfred E. Mann Foundation for Biomedical Engineering announced a $100 million endowment to support the Alfred Mann Institute at Purdue. This University-based institute will enable the commercialization of innovative biomedical technologies that improve human health.

The following examples illustrate the quality and impact of Purdue's contributions to the acquisition, discovery, and application of knowledge.

  • Professor Arun Ghosh, of the departments of Chemistry and Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, created the first FDA-approved agent to treat drug-resistant HIV.
  • With funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Professor Larry Murdock, of the Department of Entomology, has developed a method for storing cowpeas (black-eyed peas) that will have a profound effect on local economies in West and Central Africa.
  • Professor Gebisa Ejeta, of the Department of Agronomy, was named the 2009 World Food Prize winner for his drought- and Striga-resistant sorghum varieties, a major food crop for more than 500 million people on the African continent.
  • Chemistry professor Philip Low's research into receptor-targeted therapeutic and imaging agents has led to more than 30 U.S. patents and patents pending, yielding five targeted drugs that are undergoing human clinical trials for kidney, ovarian, breast, lung, brain, and endometrial cancers.
  • Professor Graham Cooks, of the Department of Chemistry, developed the desorption electrospray ionization technique, or DESI, which enables extremely rapid analysis of chemical species on surfaces, with minimal sample preparation, at atmospheric pressure.

Purdue has established a culture where high-quality research is valued and nurtured. A number of its premier researchers have been recognized internationally for the quality and impact of their discoveries. Since 2000, nine Purdue faculty have been inducted into the National Academy of Engineering. In 2007, Leslie Geddes, Showalter Professor of Biomedical Engineering, received the National Medal of Technology, the nation's highest honor for technology innovation. Earth and Atmospheric Sciences professor Kevin Gurney is a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which won the Nobel Prize alongside former Vice President Al Gore. In 2008, for his design of aseptic processing of bulk quantities of food, food science professor Philip Nelson was awarded the World Food Prize, a recognition widely considered to be "the Nobel Prize of agriculture." It marked the second time in three years this prestigious award has gone to a member of the Purdue faculty.

The achievements of Purdue researchers are also acknowledged internally through a number of prestigious awards, grants, and recognition, including:

  • Professorships: There are now 149 distinguished and named professorships at Purdue, up from 69 with this distinction in 2001.
  • Seeds for Success Award: Established in 2003, this program recognizes faculty members who attract large sponsored research grants to Purdue. Each award recipient receives a bronze acorn engraved with his or her name and is honored at a formal recognition ceremony.
  • Faculty Scholars Award: Developed in 1998, the Faculty Scholars Award was created to recognize outstanding mid-career faculty who are on an accelerated path for academic distinction. Eligible awardees are tenured associate professors and those who have held the rank of full professor for no more than five years. This distinction carries a $10,000-per-year award to support research for five years. Since its inception, Purdue has invested $2.24 million to support 448 faculty scholars.
  • Purdue Research Foundation Faculty International Travel Grants: Purdue offers approximately 40 summer faculty grants per year for assistant and associate professors to travel abroad in support of their teaching, discovery, and scholarship activities.
  • PRF Research Grants: These competitive one-year awards of approximately $20,000 are available to all tenure-track faculty who supervise doctoral research.
  • Kinley Trust Awards: Awards of up to $20,000 are granted to Purdue faculty for projects that use a social science perspective to explore methods for improving the human condition.
  • Showalter Research Trust Awards: Purdue and Indiana University researchers are granted awards up to $75,000 for interdisciplinary proposals focusing on establishing new research relationships and new research thrusts.
  • The Herbert Newby McCoy Award: Purdue's most prestigious scientific research award, this honor is granted to researchers who have distinguished themselves among their colleagues. McCoy Award winners are nominated by their peers and selected by a committee appointed by the president of the University.

Purdue Marketing and Media [12] distributes the public announcements of these research awards, which are also reported in the University's Annual Report of Sponsored Program Activities [13]; the monthly Research Review newsletter [14]; and in college, school, and departmental newsletters.

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Faculty and Staff Development

Purdue supports its commitment to lifelong learning by providing administrators, faculty, and staff a variety of opportunities for professional development. The University explicitly encourages and rewards professional development as a means of maintaining the quality of its essential workforce. This section highlights efforts to support and enrich the professional lives of Purdue's faculty and staff. These efforts include support for new faculty, educational and training opportunities for faculty and staff, leadership development, and recognition. Since 2000, Purdue has invested more than $5 million in these efforts, excluding ongoing departmental support for travel to professional meetings.

Support for New Faculty

New Faculty Orientation Program: Since 2004, Purdue has expanded orientation to a daylong series of presentations to introduce new faculty to the University, other faculty, and senior administration. Each year, orientation activities are updated based on feedback from participants. An information fair has been added to orientation, connecting new faculty with the people and resources that will help them successfully begin their Purdue careers, and a Web site of resources and contacts for new faculty has been developed [15]. The teaching orientation component of this program is discussed in Chapter 3.

Young Faculty Organization: The University has helped organize and fund this group, which hosts social events and provides networking opportunities for new faculty to connect with others who are new to the campus.

Leadership Development Opportunities for Faculty

Purdue's flagship leadership development program for faculty is the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) Academic Leadership Program (ALP) [16]. The CIC is a consortium of 12 universities committed to advancing academic excellence by sharing resources and promoting and coordinating collaborative activities. The ALP was created to identify those who have shown potential and demonstrated interest in preparing for university leadership positions. Since 2000, 48 faculty members have participated. Of the 88 Purdue faculty members who have served as CIC-ALP fellows since the program's inception in 1989, 37 are currently at Purdue in leadership roles such as department head, associate dean, dean, associate vice president, vice provost, or center director. Twenty fellows are no longer at Purdue; 16 have left for leadership positions elsewhere. In all, over half (51 percent) of the CIC-ALP fellows are serving in leadership positions.

Purdue also participates in the CIC Department Executive Officer (DEO) program [17], which is designed for new department heads to meet and discuss issues of departmental leadership and engage in case study analyses to examine specific problems facing DEOs. Twenty-nine Purdue department heads have participated in the program since its inception. In 2009, the University developed an on-campus training program for all new department heads. This yearlong program introduces new departmental leaders to the human and technical demands of leadership positions.

The University has also re-entered the American Council on Education (ACE) Fellows program [18], which is designed to introduce faculty to educational leadership, administrative organization, and decision making at various levels. In addition to hosting two ACE fellows, Purdue has nominated two faculty members to participate in the program, helped develop their leadership plans, made contacts for them to intern at other universities, and paid for their travel to visit other campuses and the ACE office in Washington to interview for the fellowships.

Purdue has also nominated, prepared, and supported a successful Jefferson Science Fellow [19]. The Jefferson Science Fellowships were established to create opportunities for substantial engagement of tenured scientists and engineers from U.S. academic institutions in the work of the U.S. State Department. Fellows serve one-year assignments working full-time in the State Department or the U.S. Agency for International Development, and then remain available to the department as consultants after returning to their academic careers.

Designed by the Association of American Colleges and Universities to advance inclusive leadership on college campuses, the Campus Women Lead program [20] was brought to Purdue in 2008 to support women faculty in developing their leadership skills. The daylong event at Purdue yielded 59 participants, who now meet with resident experts and outside speakers twice each semester to address leadership-related issues and to participate in Webinar presentations. The Campus Women Lead program was sponsored jointly by the Women's Resource Network and the Susan Bulkeley Butler Center for Leadership Excellence [21], which was created in 2007 with a $3.4 million endowment to develop leadership capacity through research and education. The Butler Center provides research support, educational seminars, workshops, and experiences that enhance both aspiring and experienced leaders' ability to manage today's complex institutions of various types, particularly colleges and universities.

Discovery Park's Entrepreneurial Leadership Academy, a five-year (2007–2012) program, is part of a $1.5 million Kauffman Campus Initiative Award. The Leadership Academy is designed to enhance faculty members' ability to lead entrepreneurial efforts that transform the way colleges and universities prepare students for success. Each year, one Academy member is chosen as the Kauffman Entrepreneurial Faculty Scholar and given financial support to lead a Discovery Park- or Purdue-wide entrepreneurship effort, designed while a fellow in the Academy.

Purdue began a series of Academic Leadership Forums in 2004, to provide department heads, directors, deans, and senior administrators with opportunities to address and discuss issues of importance to academic leaders. Held monthly, these forums have addressed such topics as tenure and promotion, the changing nature of students, faculty recruitment and retention, research misconduct, strategic planning, open courseware, student success, troubled students, uncivil faculty members, National Research Council rankings, trends in graduate education, annual performance reviews and evaluation, emergency preparedness, and other timely and important topics. These forums have been supplemented with Best Practices Workshops, held in conjunction with the Office of the President, on such topics as cyber security, institutional data management, campus climate professional development, and faculty recruitment and retention.

The new Provost Fellow's Program coincides with the University's current six-year strategic plan, New Synergies, and is designed to assist those who have an interest in and demonstrated potential for university administration. Each year during the strategic plan, up to five faculty members are selected as fellows. The program includes monthly meetings with senior administrative staff, access to Office of the Provost staff, and opportunities to work on important challenges in higher education that match the fellows' expertise and interests [22].

Professional Development Opportunities for Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Students

Multicultural Forums: In an effort to create an environment of inclusion and diversity, Purdue has made considerable investment since 2004 in seminars and workshops to increase faculty and staff members' cultural competence. These efforts have focused on mandatory multicultural forums to raise awareness and appreciation of differences, promote listening skills and relationship building, and produce an inclusive environment for all. Concurrently, a University-wide task force produced Toward a Mosaic for Educational Equity, Purdue's vision and action plan for creating a culture of diversity defined by equality and inclusion [23]. This plan addresses strategies and metrics for attracting, retaining, and advancing underrepresented populations across the campus.

Gender Forums: Starting in 1999, these forums were designed to enhance faculty understanding of men's and women's professional and life circumstances along with institutional practices and policies that might prevent or encourage inclusion. The goal of these forums was to reshape the academic culture so it supports full participation in academic life by both women and men. These workshops also focused on increasing faculty competence in understanding the roles of gender and sexual orientation in how students are prepared for today's world. The final gender forum was held in 2009.

Sabbatical Leaves: A time-honored academic tradition, sabbatical leaves allow tenured faculty to take a paid leave of absence to pursue knowledge or skills, enhancing their scholarship and teaching [24]. From 2002 to 2007, almost 700 faculty members were awarded sabbatical leaves. Purdue also has designed new opportunities for faculty to take sabbaticals to work on interdisciplinary collaborations with research teams in Discovery Park.

Fellowships for Study in a Second Discipline: Funded through the Office of the Provost, Faculty Fellowships for Study in a Second Discipline are competitive faculty development opportunities to build interdisciplinary collaborations across campus [25]. These fellowships allow faculty members to extend their scholarship and/or teaching through study in a new area that complements their major field or discipline. Since 2002, the Office of the Provost has invested more than $362,000 for 35 faculty fellowships. Recipients receive monetary support for travel, equipment, software, and other professional expenses. The recipient's home department also receives funds to help offset the cost of lost instruction. Participation is limited to tenured faculty, and the study must take place on the West Lafayette campus. The Faculty Fellowships for Study in a Second Discipline are separate and distinct from the sabbatical leave program.

Improvements in the Promotion and Tenure System: With full support of the University Senate [26], tenured associate professors were added to promotion and tenure review committees in 2005. The rationale for this important recognition and inclusion was twofold: associate professors are typically active researchers on campus, and their perspective and expertise regarding evaluation of research credentials is needed and highly valued. Furthermore, their participation in promotion and tenure deliberations helps associate professors be better prepared for their own promotions.

In recognition of the significant new challenges of a rapidly growing and changing research environment, Purdue created non-tenure track, promotable faculty appointments, designated as research faculty [27]. As of 2009, 32 faculty have been hired to these positions.

Staff Support: Purdue has made several significant commitments to staff development and training. First, it has established advisory committees for administrative and professional [28], and clerical and service [29] staff, to evaluate and recommend training opportunities. In addition, many individual units have specific training programs and opportunities, including business and accounting services, computer skills, physical facilities, housing and food service, grants management and sponsored programs, library sciences, and research protocols [30]. Each year, staff members are recognized for their major service anniversaries in luncheons hosted by the provost and executive vice president for business and finance and treasurer. Purdue offers tuition discounts for staff and their families [31].

Graduate Student Support: In addition to the discipline-based training available through individual degree programs, Purdue has a number of unique opportunities for graduate students. Foremost amongst these is the Preparing Future Faculty program [32], developed by the Graduate School and designed for graduate students who are interested in academic careers in higher education. Through participation in this program, students develop their curriculum vitae, explore the academic interviewing process, learn to negotiate job offers, and identify academic roles and responsibilities at different types of higher education institutions.

Another unique opportunity available to Purdue graduate students is the Applied Management Principles Program (AMP) [33], offered through the Krannert School of Management. The AMP allows doctoral students to gain business understanding while they are completing their academic degrees. The program has expanded to include PhD students from other Big Ten/CIC (Committee on Institutional Cooperation) schools and professionals from industry. The Sloan Foundation provided initial AMP funding and the National Science Foundation has provided continued support. Individual academic units also provide support for graduate students to complete the program.

The University strongly encourages a culture of intellectual growth, and the freedom for faculty and students to follow their intellectual interests is a protected right. This policy is stated clearly on the Office of the Vice President for Research Web site [34], within the Faculty and Staff Handbook [35], and in Article 6 of the "Student Bill of Rights" [36].

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Core component 4b: The organization demonstrates that acquisition of a breadth of knowledge and skills and the exercise of intellectual inquiry are integral to its educational programs.

Curricular Balance

Purdue's philosophy is to balance the mission of the land grant college — to provide practical knowledge and skills — with the need to provide a broad educational perspective that includes the arts and humanities, plus the basic theories that form the underpinnings of the sciences and engineering. Thus, all of Purdue's academic units integrate general education principles and coursework into each undergraduate and graduate curriculum. The University currently has no prescribed campus-wide core curriculum. All new undergraduate degree programs must be approved by the faculty of the individual college or school, the provost and president, the Board of Trustees, and finally, the Indiana Commission for Higher Education. Each college or school maintains a committee that oversees changes in the curriculum, relying frequently on feedback from students, faculty, alumni, employers, advisory boards, and other University stakeholders. This input helps keep the curriculum contemporary and capable of producing graduates who can meet the needs of future employers and who will be well equipped for a lifetime of learning.

In 2007, the College of Science extensively revised its undergraduate core curriculum [37]. This new curriculum provides greater flexibility and more experiential learning, while focusing on six outcomes of a College of Science education. The first desired outcome is to expand the traditional depth of the major. Two non-traditional outcomes in the new core curriculum are the ability to collaborate as part of a team and the ability to function in a multidisciplinary setting. The College of Science has also developed a new thread through several of their required courses. This emphasis, Great Issues, allows students to explore the impact of science on society. Overall, the desired outcome of the new curriculum initiative is to produce future scientists, educators, entrepreneurs, doctors, lawyers, governmental leaders, and informed citizens with the skills necessary to prepare them for life in a changing world.

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Program Review

University policy requires that all academic programs undergo external review every five to seven years, and that a formal report on the review be submitted to the Office of the Provost. Many academic programs are also reviewed regularly by professional accreditation and certification organizations. Each year, approximately 25 external program and accreditation reviews are conducted on campus. Self-study is an essential part of the assessment process, focusing on strengths, weaknesses, and strategies for change and improvement in the quality of programs. It is an inclusive process involving faculty, staff, students, alumni, and other relevant constituencies. After completion of the self-study, an external review is conducted to evaluate program quality and identify targets and opportunities for program innovations and improvements, which in turn guide re-allocation of resources. The review is comprehensive and provides an assessment of the program that places it in a broader context, nationally and internationally, within its discipline.

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Opportunities to Enhance Students' Academic Experience

In cultivating future academic, research, and civic leaders, Purdue invests in opportunities that allow undergraduate students to work with mentors in research and community engagement. Entrepreneurial opportunities at the local, state, and global levels allow students to expand their non-traditional skills, their vision, and their horizons.

Purdue's nationally ranked College of Education has been preparing educators since 1908. The college offers undergraduate and graduate students opportunities to participate in teacher education programs that have met rigorous standards and are accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the Indiana Department of Education. Field experiences [38] and study abroad opportunities match students with a wide array of mentors and leaders in education. In 2005, the Office of Field Experiences began discussions with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials, which led to a unique collaboration with CPS for an early field experience course. Twelve students enrolled in the special field experience in Chicago Public Schools during fall 2007 and were provided with an opportunity to focus on urban education in an elementary or secondary CPS classroom.

Purdue's Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) [39] program provides students across agriculture, engineering, science, and technology disciplines with an intensive research component that allows them to work closely with graduate students and professors. The interdisciplinary aspect of the projects affords students the opportunity to learn and work across disciplines. This setting provides undergraduate students with an avenue to perform research in an academic environment while exploring future graduate study options. The SURF program was founded by a mechanical engineering professor in 2003; that year, 50 students took part. In 2009, 192 students enrolled. In 2007, the Purdue SURF program won the International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience — United States Employer of the Year award.

Purdue provides numerous service-to-community learning opportunities for students [40]. Service activities and engagement projects around the world provide opportunities for students to experience other cultures, business practices, and arts, and the societal challenges of an immersive learning environment.

An example of a campus-wide service learning program is Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) [41], in which teams of undergraduates earn academic credit through multiyear, multidisciplinary projects that apply technology to solve problems within community service and education organizations. The teams form multiyear partnerships with community service and education organizations to carry out projects in four broad areas: human services, access and abilities, education and outreach, and the environment. More than 2,000 Purdue students have participated in EPICS thus far. EPICS teams have delivered over 150 projects to community partners. These partnerships provide many benefits to both the students and the community. EPICS students gain long-term define-design-build-test-deploy-support experience, communication skills, experience on multidisciplinary teams, and leadership and project management skills. They also gain awareness of professional ethics and the role that engineering can play in community development. Community organizations gain access to technology and expertise that would normally be prohibitively expensive, giving them the potential to provide new services or improve their quality of service.

An example of an intensive entrepreneurial mentoring program is the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Program [42], which has over 1,000 undergraduate and graduate student participants. The purpose of this certificate program is to inspire and teach students in all majors to be innovators and entrepreneurs. Through a series of five, three-credit courses, students learn the theory and practice related to starting and running their own businesses, gain better understanding of the role of entrepreneurship in the economy, and gauge their aptitude for entrepreneurship.

The Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship (DURI) [43] program is designed to involve Purdue undergraduates in an interdisciplinary research environment. DURI offers 50 student internships each semester for students to work with faculty members on research projects that involve two or more disciplines. The students work closely with faculty members in the fast-paced, entrepreneurial environment of Discovery Park.

The Interns for Indiana (IfI) [44] program, funded through the Lilly Endowment, places student interns with start-up companies. IfI provides students with valuable educational experiences and helps keep talented students in Indiana after graduation. Students receive a stipend and must participate in a one-credit seminar series, which explores entrepreneurial issues and skills and offers students opportunities to meet and network with other IfI participants. The program is available to students in all majors, of at least junior standing, with a GPA of 2.8 or above.

The Entrepreneurial Learning Community (ELC) [45] is a four-year program for incoming freshmen in all majors who have an interest in entrepreneurship in addition to their chosen academic degree objective. Student cohorts live in a common residence hall, are scheduled in the same class sections, and enjoy extracurricular activities that introduce them to various aspects of entrepreneurship. During their first year, ELC students enroll in the first two courses required for the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Biomedical Entrepreneurship (Biomedship) is a graduate certificate program for biomedical engineering and management students interested in innovation and entrepreneurship in the context of biomedical technology [46]. The purpose of the program is to develop leaders in biomedical technology innovation and management. Students learn how to identify new opportunities for innovation; assess clinical and market potential; and take the critical first steps in early prototyping, invention, patenting, developing new concepts, and moving toward commercialization. The program consists of coursework and a seminar series involving lectures and discussions led by leaders in the U.S. medical device industry.

Engagement, outreach, and service learning projects, cooperative learning experiences, and career internships are examples of how Purdue encourages students to participate in educational experiences that will develop attitudes of service, social responsibility, and local and global citizenship. International engagement is the key to helping students understand their role as responsible citizens. It is a crucial part of the feedback mechanism that brings new ideas and issues from the users of research products (i.e., technology and organizational innovations) back to those doing the research. For example, International Programs in Agriculture [47] provide study abroad opportunities for more than 25 percent of Purdue agriculture students at some time during their undergraduate programs. Agriculture faculty collaborate in research with colleagues in more than 50 countries, such as the ten-country effort, launched by Purdue, to disseminate non-chemical grain storage technology in West and Central Africa. For the last three years, agriculture faculty members have led groups of Indiana agribusiness people and students to Costa Rica to study the potential market for Indiana. In February 2007, the first veterinary medicine student went to Kenya as part of the Research to Support Linking Livestock Markets to Wildlife Conservation project. In April 2007, Purdue signed a $7 million contract with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to help rebuild the capacity of Afghan universities to serve agricultural and veterinary medicine students. At the University level, Purdue provides more than 200 different study abroad program opportunities. These programs, which will be described in more detail in the next section, vary in length from one week to one year and are located in over 45 different countries [48].

A Purdue education is a foundation of knowledge and experiences leading to a lifetime of learning. The Old Masters Program [49] was created in 1950 by student leaders, business representatives, and University officials to bring successful and outstanding individuals to campus to share their experiences with the student body. The first 10 Old Masters have been followed by more than 500 eminent personalities, chosen annually by 12 students on the program's central organizing committee. By meeting and working with successful Purdue graduates, students gain insight into the value of lifelong learning to a successful career path.

Through Purdue's New Synergies strategic plan, the institution will ensure that educational programs demonstrate the acquisition of a breadth of knowledge and skills in intellectual inquiry through numerous approaches. The University will cultivate learning opportunities that engage students in discovery with delivery. Building on discipline-based research and outstanding scholarship and creative activity, the University will also focus on the growth of human and intellectual diversity in the research enterprise by engaging students, faculty, and staff in transdisciplinary and transnational problems. To achieve these goals, Purdue will undertake several new initiatives in the coming years, including: enhancing the honors program, increasing civic engagement opportunities, considering a University-wide core curriculum, transforming gateway courses, building research infrastructure, and developing multidisciplinary teams for addressing societal grand challenges involving core strengths in life science, physical sciences, and engineering, while leveraging these strengths to develop synergies with liberal arts, education, and other disciplines.

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Core Component 4c: The organization assesses the usefulness of its curricula to students who will live and work in a global, diverse, and technological society.

The University's commitment to preparing students for living and working in a global, diverse, and technological society is evident in one of the undergraduate core competencies, which states that Purdue undergraduate students will be able to demonstrate awareness of the cultural, social, political, and economic forces and the technologies that shape our world. The 2008 — 2014 strategic plan [50] clearly communicates Purdue's continuous commitment to helping students achieve this core competency with statements such as:

  • Purdue will strive to provide students with "growing opportunities for technological and scientific knowledge/fluency."
  • As part of its key priorities/investment areas, Purdue will seek to "develop a plan to ensure increased diversity of student body … enhance experiential learning opportunities (research, global, service) … enhance program opportunities abroad for Purdue students … and ensure, through curricular and programmatic opportunities, that all students can have global credentials."

The following paragraphs describe how Purdue's curricula prepare students to live and work in a global, diverse, and technological society. The first section will focus on an inventory of curricular and extracurricular activities and support services devoted to helping students achieve the stated outcome. The second section will include assessment results related to the impact of those activities. Finally, the third section will outline future directions for assessing the usefulness of Purdue's curricula for helping students achieve desired outcomes.

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Inventory of Curricular and Extracurricular Activities and Support Services

Preparation for a Global and Diverse Society

One method of preparing students for living and working in a global society is to immerse them in an international body of students, faculty, and staff on campus. In 2008 nearly 5,500 students and 2,700 faculty and staff from more than 120 foreign countries were part of Purdue's academic population. The University typically ranks second or third in international student enrollment among all public colleges and universities in the United States.

Study abroad programs exist in every college and school at Purdue, many of which also have sister colleges in other countries with whom they exchange students and faculty. The School of Veterinary Medicine, for example, has a sister institution in Kitasato University, Japan. Each year students and instructors from the veterinary college at Kitasato come to Purdue to engage with the veterinary students in their clinical rotations, allowing for cultural interaction between two groups of future veterinary professionals through their common bond in animal health care. The College of Technology [51] has a partnership program with the Dublin Institute of Technology that provides undergraduate student exchange experiences in high-tech areas such as biotechnology manufacturing and sensor technology.

Since its last accreditation visit, Purdue has made a targeted effort to increase study abroad opportunities. Figure 4-4 demonstrates the success of these campus-wide efforts. The number of active programs available to students has almost tripled and the number of students participating has increased by more than 300 percent.

Figure 4-4. Study Abroad Programs and Student Participation, 1999-2009

Figure 4-4. Study  Abroad Programs and Student Participation, 1999-2009

Source: Office of International Programs

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Purdue has enhanced the diversity of its campus population by increasing the number of minority students, faculty, and staff, as reported in the Introduction chapter, Figures I-4, I-5, and I-6. A variety of programs and colloquia sponsored by organizations, schools, and programs across campus expose students to diverse cultural backgrounds through guest lectures on diversity and global issues. The Cultural Art Series, offered through Purdue's Black Cultural Center and the Tecumseh Project Seminar Series are examples of events presented throughout the school year to enhance cultural and social development of the University community. Guest presenters have included James Earl Jones, the Dalai Lama, Maya Angelou, and Spike Lee.

The Office of International Students and Scholars is a primary support resource, enhancing the academic, cultural, and social pursuits of students and scholars from abroad through expertise in recruitment, admissions, advising, and cross-cultural programming [52]. Other University offices also focus on encouraging a diverse and inclusive environment. The Purdue Office of Institutional Equity [53] promotes human and intellectual diversity by fostering an inclusive environment for all members of the University community. Purdue's Diversity Resource Office [54] develops, administers, and assesses programs and activities to encourage diversity throughout the University. The Women's Resource Office [55] strives to improve the campus climate by providing programs on women's issues and gender-related concerns.

A variety of projects and programs also contribute to the creation of a diverse and inclusive environment at Purdue. Project Respect [56] celebrates the uniqueness of the individual as well as the commonalities among all people, and showcases the University's commitment to diversity with numerous annual events, offered across campus, for students, faculty, staff, and community members. The DiversiKey [57] is a student-driven certificate program designed to provide students with experience and growth in diversity and leadership. Students in the program demonstrate to prospective employers that they have made a serious commitment to understanding diversity-related issues.

Purdue also provides social and academic opportunities for students from diverse cultures to acclimate to the University's academic environment. The colleges of Engineering, Science, and Technology have partnered to coordinate the Academic Boot Camp (ABC) program [58]. For five weeks in the summer, admitted students are exposed to the coursework, lifestyle, and pace of college life. The Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation [59] program provides students with opportunities to work together with the University to promote the successful completion of a baccalaureate degree in a designated STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) discipline. The Summer Research Opportunities Program [60] encourages talented undergraduate students from social and economic backgrounds that are underrepresented in research careers to pursue graduate education through intensive research experiences with faculty mentors. Purdue is also becoming increasingly involved in the education of Native American graduate students. With the support of the Sloan Foundation, the University has successfully recruited more than 12 Native American students into graduate programs in the STEM disciplines over the past two years, with the goal of doubling enrollment by 2010.

Learning outcomes in Purdue's colleges also attest to the University's commitment to helping students prepare for living and working in a global and diverse society. The colleges of Agriculture, Consumer and Family Sciences, Engineering, Liberal Arts, and Technology all have learning outcomes related to global awareness. The College of Liberal Arts has several learning outcomes focused on preparing students for a global society, requiring them to be able to communicate in a second language and to understand the commonalities and differences among the people of nations and cultures radically different from their own. The mapping of college and program learning outcomes (discussed in Chapter 3) to the University's core competency of global awareness provides insight into the general support of this outcome across the campus.

The College of Agriculture serves as an example of how diversity is integrated into the curriculum through course requirements. Students can choose from a variety of courses in fulfilling the Multicultural Understanding Requirement, including the elective AGR 201 — Communicating across Cultures. The course includes a basic review of the variety of differences that exist among human beings, such as race/ethnicity, gender identity, age, social class, disability, learning styles, and religion/spiritual orientation. The African American Studies and Research Center [61] offers an undergraduate major and minor in African American studies, as well as graduate opportunities. The Jewish Studies Program [62], founded in 1981, acquaints students with the culture, language, literature, history, philosophy, and religious customs of the Jewish people, from antiquity to the present.

Preparation for Technological Society

Purdue provides a wide variety of resources to prepare students for working and living in a technological society. In addition to providing technology infrastructure and access to many different software applications, as illustrated in Table 4-4, Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP) also supports faculty in the use and exploration of technology for educational purposes. This support involves consulting and training, grants, awards, and providing venues for the sharing of best practices through an annual conference and the Teaching and Technology Brown Bag Series, co-sponsored with the Center for Instructional Excellence [63].

Table 4-4. Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP) Support and Resources

Table 4-4.  Information Technology at Purdue (ITaP) Support and Resources

Source: Office of the Vice President for Information Technology

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ITaP is also studying the impact of how technology is improving teaching and learning. This annual initiative includes gathering feedback from thousands of students, faculty, and staff about ITaP's Teaching and Learning Technologies-supported academic technologies. The data gathered from these impact studies is used to create "learning profiles" for various technologies. With this information in hand, better institutional decisions can be made regarding technology and its support of the teaching and learning environment.

The technology support and resources offered by ITaP provide opportunities for faculty to exercise their creativity to integrate technology into the curriculum. For example, students in EDCI — 270, Introduction to Educational Technology and Computing, collaborated with students from Australia, Singapore, Taiwan, and China as they explored Web 2.0 techniques and created an online resource in which they shared educational applications of the technologies [64].

Professors from the departments of Communication and Foreign Languages and Literatures collaborated with the Envision Center in creating a simulation of an ancient Roman forum and an entomology professor created a virtual ecological simulation to help students better understand a complex theory [65]. Students in OLS 274 — Applied Leadership, experienced education in the SecondLife environment and professors in the departments of Chemistry and Computer Graphics Technology collaborated in the creation of an educational video game [66] for teaching undergraduate chemistry.

Two technologies most widely used by faculty are BoilerCast and classroom performance systems (CPS, or "clickers"). BoilerCast allows faculty to make audio, video, images, and PDF files from their lectures available to students, who made 250,565 downloads from the service from fall 2008 through spring 2009. During the same time period, 18,931 students in 153 courses were involved with the use of CPS.

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Assessment of the Impact

Assessment Results: Preparation for Global and Diverse Society

The impact of curricular and extracurricular activities related to global awareness and diversity should be reflected in a campus climate of inclusiveness and mutual respect. Results from several surveys provide insights into the impact of these activities. The Diversity Survey, conducted in 2006-07 [67] with participation from 13,848 students, rated Purdue's overall diversity climate at 3.51 on a 5-point scale (where 1 is very poor and 5 is very good). The survey indicated that students feel comfortable interacting with instructors and classmates from a different group than their own (an average of 4.31 and 4.34, respectively, on a 5-point scale). Students rated Purdue's commitment to diversity at 3.46 and rated their belief that the University provides equal opportunities for access and success at 3.62. The importance of diversity in education and scholarship was rated at 3.68 by participating students. A majority of students, 52.6 percent, reported not having experienced harassment, 34.6 percent had witnessed harassment in the past two years, and 40.5 percent reported they were not concerned with being discriminated against, during that same two year span. It should be noted that many of the ratings varied among some of the groups, as classified by gender, race/ethnicity, international status, disability, and sexual orientation.

Findings from other institutional surveys shed further light on Purdue's impact on preparing students for living and working in a diverse, global society. The Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) Your First College Year Survey (YFCY) [68] examined students' experiences and perceptions related to diversity. At the end of their freshmen year, 94 percent of respondents reported having socialized frequently or occasionally with someone of another racial/ethnic group. With regards to global awareness, results from course evaluations for 20 courses participating in the Study Abroad Summer 2008 program showed that the vast majority of students (97 percent of 199 respondents) agreed or strongly agreed that they are better equipped to deal with inter-cultural issues as a result of their study abroad experiences.

Other assessment results related to preparing the University's students for living and working in a global and diverse society are mixed. For example, results from the 2008 Graduate Student Learning Outcomes Survey (GSLOS) showed over 80 percent of the respondents agreed that interaction with individuals from diverse backgrounds and characteristics is an important part of a college education [69]. Additionally, respondents indicated their Purdue experience improved their ability to interact with diverse groups of people (83 percent) and their ability to understand global issues in society (78 percent). Findings from the 2007 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) showed that just over 50 percent of the freshmen and seniors believed that their experience at the University contributed to their understanding of people of other racial and ethnic backgrounds, and 63 percent of freshmen and 45 percent of seniors believed that Purdue encouraged contact with students from different racial/ethnic backgrounds. Only 40 percent of the students in the Diversity Survey indicated that they were "not concerned" about being discriminated against. Three percent of students in the CIRP YFCY survey reported to have experienced tense, somewhat hostile interactions with people from another racial/ethnic group. Taken together, these results show there is room for improvement in preparing students to live and work in a diverse global society, and a need for further data and analysis to better understand how to accomplish this goal.

Assessment Results: Preparation for Technological Society

Results from the 2007 and 2008 GSLOS, presented in Table 4-5, show that the majority of the participating seniors generally agreed that their experience at Purdue improved their ability to use computer technology and other technologies new to them. These findings are supported by results from the 2004 and 2007 NSSE, also shown in Table 4-5, in which the vast majority of freshmen and seniors agreed that their experience at the University has contributed "quite a bit" or "very much" to their ability to use computing and information technology.

Table 4-5. Findings Related to Technology from NSSE and GSLOS

Table 4-5.  Findings Related to Technology from NSSE and GSLOS

Source: Office of Institutional Research

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Purdue is providing a wide variety of support structures, along with curricular and extracurricular activities, in an effort to prepare students for living in a diverse, technological, global society. In the context of the New Synergies strategic plan, there are several initiatives that demonstrate the University's commitment to assessing the usefulness of its curricula in these areas. In its strategic plan, the University has developed a number of metrics. These will be used to assess  progress, and they will be instrumental in determining the usefulness of curricula, along with examples of assessment and core curriculum that demonstrate globalization, including international research and engagement. Improved coordination and alignment of existing assessment efforts, along with the gathering of additional relevant information and translation of the evidence into effective changes, will be further steps for successfully preparing tomorrow's leaders.

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Core component 4d: The organization provides support to ensure that faculty, students, and staff acquire, discover, and apply knowledge responsibly.

Purdue has developed policies to ensure that its learning and research communities acquire, responsibly discover, and apply knowledge. These policies establish expectations for the general conduct of University faculty, staff, and students, and establish standards for their specific activities in all phases of creative endeavor.

Examples of Purdue policies that establish expectations for general personal conduct include:

  • Purdue Statement of Integrity [70];
  • Bill of Student Rights [36] and Code of Honor [71];
  • Regulations Governing Student Conduct, Disciplinary Proceedings, and Appeals [72];
  • Policy on Amorous Relationships [73];
  • Policy on Research Misconduct (Purdue Policy VIII.3.1) [74];
  • Policy on Conflicts of Interest and Commitment (Executive Memorandum C-39) [75];
  • Conflicts of Interest Disclosure Requirements (Executive Memorandum C-1) [76];
  • Use of Copyrighted Materials for Educational and Research Purposes (Executive Memorandum B-53) [77];
  • Policy on Intellectual Property (Policy VIII.4.1) [78];
  • Fraud Reporting Program (Internal Audit) [79];
  • Antiharassment Policy (Executive Memorandum C-33) [80]; and
  • Integrated Safety Plan (ISP), Radiological and Environmental Management (REM) [81].

Examples of Purdue policies that establish standards for specific activities include:

  • Duties and Responsibilities of the University Committee on Animal Care (Executive Memorandum B-1) [82],
  • Duties and Responsibilities of the University Committee on Use of Human Research Subjects (Executive Memorandum B-45) [83],
  • Duties and Responsibilities of the University Radiological Control Committee (Executive Memorandum B-14) [84],
  • Composition, Duties, and Responsibilities of the Purdue University Laser Safety Committee (Executive Memorandum D-2) [85], and
  • Purdue Researchers' Guide (REM) [86].

Additionally, new faculty and students are provided specific orientation programs on University policies and procedures to guide them in the responsible conduct of their duties. These programs are constantly evolving to keep pace with new policies and state and federal laws governing university operations. Examples of these orientation programs include:

  • Student Access, Transition, and Success (SATS) Program [87],
  • Convocation for New Graduate Students [88],
  • New Faculty Orientation, Office of the Vice President for Research [89] and Office of the Provost [15], and
  • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) [90] and Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA)/Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 [91] training for faculty and staff.

Prior formal education and training is required for faculty, staff, and students conducting research involving human or other vertebrate animal subjects, or potentially hazardous materials. University programs for the protection of research subjects have adopted standards that exceed the minimums required by federal regulations, and have pursued accreditation by national and international organizations. There are two recent initiatives that exemplify Purdue's commitment in this crucial area. One is the Vertebrate Animal Care and Use Program [92], which is accredited by the Association for the Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International. The other is the Human Research Protection Program [93], which is currently engaged in a self-study as a component of application for accreditation by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs. Purdue's Institutional Review Board [94] oversees all of the University's research involving human subjects.

The Graduate School sponsors a series of annual workshops for graduate students and postdoctoral research associates on the responsible conduct of research. Topics in this series include research integrity, recognizing and avoiding plagiarism, copyright and other forms of intellectual property, roles and responsibilities of mentors and mentees, and data management. For example, graduate students in the College of Agriculture and the Purdue University Interdisciplinary Life Science graduate program can satisfy the research requirements by taking the one-credit ENTM 612 — Responsible Conduct in Research course, taught by Purdue's associate vice president for research. Two divisions of this course are taught every semester, and enrollment has grown to more than 70 students per semester. The Graduate School Web site provides links to diverse resources explaining and facilitating the responsible conduct of research, including tutorials, online courses, and case studies [95]. The Graduate School requires all research-based graduate degree programs to have a learning outcome that addresses the "responsible conduct of research" training students receive.

The America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (COMPETES) Act requires that all undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral fellows participating in NSF-sponsored research must complete formal education in the responsible conduct of research. Purdue's compliance with this Act will markedly increase the number of students receiving this preparation for their careers in scholarship and research. The University proactively assists investigators in identifying regulatory requirements associated with sponsored research projects and ensures that required regulatory review occurs prior to the initiation of research. For example:

  • The Office of Research Administration (ORA) reviews all proposals submitted to external sponsors to ensure that all project regulatory requirements have been identified, and then assists investigators in satisfying these requirements prior to the receipt of sponsored awards. ORA also reviews all new awards from external sponsors to verify that regulatory approvals are in place prior to providing investigators access to project funds.
  • ORA is an annual sponsor of the Indiana University Poynter Center's Teaching Research Ethics Workshop and provides full support for two Purdue faculty to participate in this workshop each year.
  • When the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced its new public access requirement for peer-reviewed publications arising from NIH-sponsored research, workshops and Web resources were prepared for Purdue investigators and delivered jointly by ORA and University Libraries to explain the new requirement and how to comply. A special focus of these support programs is providing guidance and assistance to investigators in copyright management, ensuring that authors preserve the necessary control of copyright for their scholarly publications to legally satisfy new NIH requirements.

Purdue has developed and implemented integrated approaches to assess and manage risks associated with its research and instructional programs. Twice each academic year, the University Hazards Oversight Management Committee meets to review campus safety and regulatory compliance. The committee is convened jointly by the vice president for research and vice president for physical facilities and includes the leadership of ORA and the Office of Environmental Health and Safety and chairs of all University regulatory oversight committees. Likewise, Radiological and Environmental Management (REM) has established the Integrated Safety Program (ISP) to communicate environmental health and safety issues across the University and call for departmental-level safety committees and individual self-audits. The ISP provides indemnification from regulatory fines for units with a certified safety program. REM acts as an agent of the OSHA Compliance Officer to certify safety programs.

Purdue sponsors forums to promote campus awareness and dialogue on current national and international issues in research and scholarship. An example is the Scholarly Communication Task Force, which sponsored the review and endorsement of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation's Author's Rights Addendum by the Purdue University Senate, and hosted a day-long, campus-wide colloquium to discuss the impact of changes in scholarly communication on University tenure and promotion procedures and expectations [96].

The University is committed to ensuring that faculty, students, and staff acquire, discover, and apply knowledge responsibly. Many initiatives are underway that exemplify Purdue's ongoing commitment in this area. A key undertaking is the recently-formed research integrity committee responsible for review of research and associated programs, policies, and practices, to ensure that they cohere effectively and serve the needs of the University and its constituents.

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Summary of Evidence

Purdue is committed to promoting a life of learning for its faculty, staff, and students; fostering new areas of inquiry; stimulating creativity; and achieving increased responsibility in practice across its mission of discovery. Through the forward-thinking establishment of Discovery Park, the successful University-wide effort to create 300 new faculty positions, and the foundational work to increase support for faculty efforts in discovery, the University has more than doubled its research productivity and initiated the structural requirements to achieve the goal of doubling the productivity again.

Furthermore, through its consistent attention to ensure that both graduate and undergraduate students participate in and benefit from the increased focus on intellectual inquiry, Purdue graduates are even better prepared to meet the challenges of their chosen career paths. The addition of programs such as the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, Engineering Projects in Community Service, and the Discovery Park Undergraduate Research Internship have provided the synergy for students to gain knowledge from professors both during traditional classroom teaching and through practical experience in their specialized fields. Likewise, increased emphasis on students' international awareness, evidenced by the five-fold increase of Study Abroad Programs since the last accreditation visit, has provided Purdue students with a broader framework for success in a global world. Efforts to improve achievement in student success and increase global awareness are even more prominent in the University's new strategic plan.

Finally, while Purdue has accomplished a great deal in the area of discovery and applying this new knowledge to practical applications, it has done so efficiently and effectively, and with transparency, accountability, and responsibility. These factors are evidenced by Purdue's efforts to establish new policies and procedures to achieve and augment compliance with tightened state and federal laws and to provide further guidelines, orientations, and formal training to enhance processes and, thus, results.

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Challenges and Opportunities

"The synergies sparked by interdisciplinary research at Purdue University create an environment for discovery, leading to transformational innovations that have the potential to solve some of our world's grand challenges."

—Richard Buckius, vice president for research, Purdue University

Purdue is committed to the ideals and expectations set forth in the core components of Criterion 4, demonstrating strong upward growth in sponsored program funding over the past several years and amassing a healthy portfolio of industrial and foundation funding. The University is very competitive in non-governmental funding, with only a few national universities attracting more industry support. Purdue's strong disciplinary and multidisciplinary teams of investigators are making demonstrable impact on the grand challenges of our day.

While the University is highly competitive in its research enterprise, it seeks to raise the stature and impact of Purdue's large-scale research mission to the level of the very best universities, worldwide. Some of the steps believed necessary to accomplish this goal are:

  • providing resources for investment and growth in research faculty and staff, and growing core research facilities and existing capabilities;
  • improving research administrative and sponsored program services, ensuring that infrastructure and staff supporting the responsible conduct of research grow in proportion to the expansion and increased complexity of the research enterprise, and reviewing and continually updating policies and procedures that support responsible research so that they satisfy regulatory requirements and foster expansion;
  • making grand-challenge research a priority for efforts in Discovery Park, forming and supporting high-profile faculty research teams in emerging need areas, creating large-scale partnerships with industry and government, and developing synergies among the sciences with liberal arts, business, and education; and
  • increasing Purdue faculty representation in the national academies through targeted recruitment of academy members and continued development, promotion, and nomination of Purdue faculty.
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