Major Processes

This step requires that the team identify major processes (e.g., marketing, recruitment, testing and assessment, instruction, student support services, career development, and job placement) that support the movement of students along the pathway. Processes that are thought to impact outcome problems identified in the Outcome and Equity phase are examined closely. There are four parts to this step. 

1. Engage the team in identifying and inventorying major functional processes with a focus on the point of view of students and their movement from entry point to exit point along a pathway. Use brainstorming or another method to create a comprehensive list. Remember, the purpose of this step is to list major functional processes, not to develop detailed descriptions of each process or make assumptions about their contributions to identified outcome gaps.

2. Briefly describe each major functional process by answering the following questions:

  • What is this process called?
  • What is the purpose of the process?
  • What is the overall result of the process?
  • How does the process relate to the equity gap identified in the problem statement?
  • Should the process be examined in greater detail?

3. Revisit the problem description and consider whether the problem is encompassed in the identified major functional processes. For example, if retention of minority students is a concern, the team needs to be sure that the major processes that most affect minority student retention are included in the inventory of processes developed in this step.

4. Reach consensus on one or two major functional processes that should be examined in greater detail. Teams should select processes that relate directly to the problems identified.