San Jose State University

Graduation Initiative Delivery Plan Summary

Submitted by Gerry Selter, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Background context for SJSU's graduation initiative:

San José State University (SJSU) is committed to improve student progress toward graduation. In strategically planning to meet our the goals of this initiative, we have increased our focus and dedication to strengthening our collaborations between the divisions of Student Affairs and Academic Affairs that are key to student success. As our initiative progresses, our actions and expect impacts will reflect this partnership, as we work together to increase our graduation rates and close the achievement gap.


By Fall 2015, our 6-year graduation rate will increase by 9% (from 41.9% to 50.9%) for all first-time freshmen. Graduation rate of Under-Represented Minorities (URM) is expected to improve by 12% (from 35.5% to 47.5%). For upper division transfers, the 6-year graduation rate will increase by 6% (from 66.1% to 72.1%). Graduation rate of URM transfers will improve by 10% (58.8% to 68.8%). With these changes, our graduation gaps between URM and Non-URM students will decrease by approximately 3.4% for first-time freshmen and 4.5% for upper division transfers.  

Highlights of SJSU's graduation and retention initiative:

Academic Advising:

We will relocate our Academic Advising Retention Services (AARS) unit so it is centrally located at SJSU in close proximity to other student support services. The objectives of AARS will focus on undeclared advising, general education advising, probation workshops and orientation programs.

Information technology tools utilizing the CMS student database will be developed to enhance the ability of college and staff advisors to enter data, monitor and track student progress to degree, and provide early intervention to students who are struggling.

Currently, there are three college-based advising centers (Business, Engineering and Science). By Fall 2010, the College of Applied Sciences and Arts will open their college-based advising center. Thus, four of the seven colleges will have their own advising centers for their students.

Remedial Education and Closing the Achievement Gap:

Incoming frosh who are remedial in both math and English will complete remediation in one area through a summer bridge program before starting SJSU. We plan to offer this summer bridge program in Summer 2011.

Writing Skills Test (WST) Remediation:

We will implement a policy change to encourage students to take the WST as soon as they complete ENGL 1B and require that they take WST prior to reaching 75 units. Special Session alternative demonstration course will be created that will satisfy the WST. We will work with majors to require passing WST prior to select gateway courses so that students don’t complete entire major without passing WST.

Probation Advising:

Each college will submit their action plan for probation advising to the Provost. Some colleges already offer probation advising to their students.

Identifying and Removing Barriers to Student Success:

By the end of Spring 2010 semester, the Deans and AVPs will report to the Provost their list of barriers to student success from their units, such as challenging gateway courses, too many required courses for the major, or inadequate preparation for the major.

Student Support Services:

Because research indicates that the two variables that have the greatest impact on freshmen retention are students learning about study skills and wellness, comprehensive workshops will be offered to all entering students.

Quality of Instruction:

We will continue to assess the quality of instruction to offer a variety of effective, student- centered learning opportunities for our students to achieve their goals for life-long learning.


During the Spring 2010 semester, SJSU's Office of Institutional Research will analyze our baseline data points and create reporting strategies for this initiative. Our key performance indicators include yearly increase in graduation rates, department percentage of students who have fulfilled graduation requirements, and department percentage of URM students who have fulfilled graduation requirements. We also will track students who have been flagged for potential probation and those who go onto probation.


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