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Another record! APSU scores a 97 in performance funding

In the classroom, a 97 is an excellent grade.

In the Tennessee Higher Education Commissions 2003-04 Performance Funding Program, a 97 isnt too shabby, either. Especially when you consider that each point is worth more than $16,000.

Austin Peay scored a 97–the Universitys all-time best–in the THEC programs most recent point recommendations. This marks the fourth consecutive year that APSUs performance funding score has improved.

OK, so whats performance funding, and what does a better score mean?
In the classroom, a 97 is an excellent grade.

In the Tennessee Higher Education Commission's 2003-04 Performance Funding Program, a 97 isn't too shabby, either. Especially when you consider that each point is worth more than $16,000.

Austin Peay scored a 97—the University's all-time best—in the THEC program's most recent point recommendations. This marks the fourth consecutive year that APSU's performance funding score has improved.

OK, so what's performance funding, and what does a better score mean?

THEC's Performance Funding Program, established in 1979, was the first incentive-based accountability initiative for public higher education in the nation. The program, which has become a model for other states, financially rewards institutions based on selected measures of effectiveness, including surveys, senior exit exams, self-studies and how well a university has met goals set by itself and THEC.

These performance-funding indicators are basically 60 percent student performance and satisfaction, 40 percent academic program and institutional goals.

Approximately 5 percent of the state's appropriation to a university is linked to its performance-funding score, according to Dr. Houston Davis, associate vice president for academic affairs.

The program grades universities based on a 100-point scale, and each point is worth about $16,300. Austin Peay has improved its grade of 89 in 2000-01 to 97 in 2003-04—a difference of eight points, or $130,000.

“We've earned points we were losing, because we're attending to the details of the reports better than we once did,” says Davis. “Also, our students are performing at an all-time high, and we're performing better in the student satisfaction categories.”

Austin Peay received the maximum number of points available in categories like general education foundation (based on the results of our senior exit exams), accreditation, major field testing (based on senior major field tests), enrolled student survey, articulation and transfer, retention and persistence and self-study/implementation.

Davis says, “By the time we submit our final report, many people at APSU have their fingerprints on the information we turn in. We could not have done this without the assistance that faculty and staff provide in our assessment activities.”
—Rebecca Mackey