Effectiveness and Efficiency Initiative


What is the Effectiveness and Efficiency (E&E) Program?

A University System of Maryland effort to achieve savings for redirection to the system's highest priorities:

  • preserve and build the quality of system institutions;
  • address enrollment demand;
  • enhance the academic opportunities and services available to students;
  • moderate tuition increases;
  • promote and demonstrate effective stewardship of resources.

In brief, E&E is supporting the system's overarching goals of Quality, Accessibility, Affordability, and Accountability. USM began implementing E&E in fall 2004.

Why did USM launch E&E?

USM developed and launched E&E to change the way the system does business so it can deal effectively with its fiscal, enrollment demand, and personnel challenges. USM is serving more students and absorbing higher costs with fewer people and less state funding. Since FY 2002, the system has:

  • accommodated more than 5,500 additional full-time-equivalent students;
  • lost more than 500 filled personnel positions in its state-supported budget;
  • absorbed $75 million in increased costs annually;
  • lost 12.5 percent of its state funding

What are we working to achieve with E&E?

  • increase enrollment capacity, reduce costs, and fund quality;
  • reposition the system for success;
  • achieve $26.6 million in savings or cost avoidance by 6.30.06 for redirection;
  • accommodate an additional 2,100 FTEs (about a quarter of the projected enrollment growth) during the next three years at no additional cost to the state.

Specifically, how will E&E achieve these goals?

To build enrollment capacity:

  • increase average faculty course loads;
  • develop policies and enhance advising services to help students complete academic programs in a more timely manner, and thereby save tuition money;
  • grow enrollment at "less-expensive" comprehensive institutions.

To reduce costs and fund quality:

  • conduct an organizational review of the system to develop recommendations for the optimal structure for USM and its constituent institutions;
  • leverage USM buying power for "strategic sourcing" to cut costs;
  • reduce costs by purchasing energy cooperatively;
  • streamline enrollment management services to eliminate unnecessary duplication;
  • centralize shared services (e.g., finance, human resource management);

Clarification of specific initiatives that have been misinterpreted. These initiatives seek to improve the overall quality of students' education experiences, give students the opportunity to accelerate their time to degree and thereby save money, and increase the system's capacity to accommodate additional students.

Initiative: Develop a policy that limits undergraduate degree requirements to 120 credits, except in cases where program accreditation requirements mandate otherwise:

  • will seek to establish 120 as the standard number of credits required for a bachelor's degree;
  • will allow for exceptions, including programs defined specifically as five-year, programs governed by professional accreditation or certification requirements mandating more than 120 credits.

Initiative: Develop a policy that encourages students to complete their studies without compiling an excessive number of credits beyond those required for degrees.

  • policy parameters are under review, including enhancement of academic advising and the alignment of "satisfactory academic progress" policies with federal aid requirements.

Initiative: Ensure average faculty course loads achieve the midpoint of the range set by the regents:

  • will set the average teaching load at 5.5 course units per tenured/tenure track faculty member at the research universities, and at 7.5 course units per tenured/tenure-track faculty member at the comprehensive universities;
  • will reflect that course load is just one component of a faculty members' workload, which includes teaching, research, and service.

Note: Draft policies for the three initiatives outlined above are scheduled for board review in spring semester 2005.

Initiative: The USM Board of Regents will undertake an organization review of the System and develop recommendations regarding the most effective and efficient structure for USM and its institutions.

  • structure review is under way, including a focus on the system's four "special-purpose" institutions: University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute, University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, University of Baltimore, and University of Maryland University College;
  • in response to public speculation, the board in November announced that it is NOT considering merging the University of Baltimore with any other USM institution;
  • review report and recommendations are expected in summer 2005.

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