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Community College of Rhode Island

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Foundational Dimensions


Members of the Philosophy committee will ask this question: Does CCRI intentionally cultivate learning environments for new students that emerge from a philosophy of two-year colleges as gateways to higher education? Ideally, the philosophy is explicit and easily understood. It is consistent with the institutional mission, reflects a consensus of internal and external constituencies, and is widely disseminated. The philosophy is also the basis for organizational policies, practices, structures, leadership, and resource allocation to support the new student experience.


Members of the Organization committee will review this question: Does CCRI provide a comprehensive, coordinated, and flexible approach to the new student experience through effective organizational structures and policies? Ideally, structures and policies guide and align all aspects of the new student experience. Through effective partnerships, critical stakeholders such as instructional, administrative, and student services units provide a coherent experience for new students that is enhanced by ongoing faculty and staff development activities and appropriate budgetary arrangements.


Members of the Learning Committee is review this question: Does CCRI deliver curricular and co-curricular learning experiences that engage new students in order to develop knowledge, skills, attitudes, and behaviors consistent with the institutional mission, students' academic and career goals, and workplace expectations? Ideally, both in and out of the classroom, learning experiences promote critical thinking, ethical decision making, and the lifelong pursuit of knowledge.

Campus Culture

Members of the Campus Culture committee will review these questions: Does CCRI make new students a high priority for faculty and staff? Is there a culture of responsibility for the experiences of these new students? Ideally, a culture of responsibility for the experiences of new students characterizes the institution. This culture is realized through high-quality instruction, services, and support as well as substantial interaction with students both inside and outside the classroom. Campus leaders nurture this culture and support it by appropriate institutional recognition and rewards.


Members of the Transitions committee will review this question: Does CCRI facilitate appropriate student transitions beginning with outreach and recruitment and continuing throughout the period of enrollment? Ideally, the institution communicates clear curricular/co-curricular expectations and possibilities, and provides appropriate preparation and support for educational success. It is forthright about its responsibilities to students as well as students’ responsibilities to themselves and the institution. The institution creates and maintains communication with secondary and other postsecondary institutions, families, employers, community agencies, and other sources of support for students.

All Students

Members of the All Students committee will review this question: Does CCRI serve all new students according to their varied needs? Ideally, the institution anticipates, identifies, and addresses the needs of traditional and non-traditional students in response to their individual abilities, backgrounds, interests, and experiences. These efforts are subject to assessment and adjustment as needed. The institution also ensures campus environments that are inclusive and safe for all students.


Members of the Diversity committee will review this question: Does CCRI ensure that new students experience ongoing exploration of diverse ideas, worldviews, and cultures as a means of enhancing their learning and participation in pluralistic communities? Ideally, the institution cultivates an open and civil community in which students interact with people from varied backgrounds and cultures. The institution guides students to reflect on ideas and values different from those they currently hold, and explore their own cultures and the cultures of others.

Roles and Purposes

The Roles and Purposes committee will review this question: Does CCRI promote student understanding of the various roles and purposes of higher education and those unique to two-year institutions, both for the individual and society? Ideally, roles and purposes include learning for personal growth, career enhancement, workplace preparation and retraining, transfer for additional education, engaged citizenship, and serving the public good. The institution encourages new students to examine their motivation and goals with regard to higher education in general and to their own college. Students are exposed to the value of both a general education and focused study in an academic or career field.


The Improvement Committee will review this question: Does CCRI conduct assessment and maintain associations with other institutions and relevant professional organizations in order to effect improvement? Ideally, assessment provides feedback to new students to guide their learning, to faculty to guide their teaching, and to the institution to guide planning, resource allocation, decision making, and improvement of programs and policies. As a way to facilitate improvement, the institution is knowledgeable about current practices at other institutions as well as relevant research and scholarship.

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Last Updated: 1/26/16