Draft Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
The State University of New York and Buffalo State College

Discussion Item 1-Selectivity

Due to Buffalo State College's commitment to access, the College has chosen to maintain a position in Group 3 of the selectivity matrix. However, since MRI, the institution's efforts have focused on strengthening the academic profile of incoming students while maintaining access. Observable trends include small decreases in the percentages of special admits and Groups 4 and 5 students, accompanied by increases in the three higher groups. Goals for the next five years include:

  • further increasing the percentage of students in Groups 1 and 2 and decreasing the percentage of students in Groups 4 and 5;

  • decreasing slightly the special admission cohort;

  • improving mean SAT scores in all student cohorts with regularly admitted students approaching the national average for college-bound students; and

  • increasing the yield of students from selectivity Groups 1 and 2 supported, in part, by new scholarship resources.

The selectivity plan shown in Table 3 is consistent with these goals.

Table 3

Distribution of First-Time Full-Time Regular Admit Students By Selectivity Group

Discussion Item: Consideration of increased selectivity goals, decreasing non classifiable and group 4 while increasing groups 2 and 3.

Discussion Item 2-Sponsored Research

Buffalo State College continues to lead the comprehensive colleges in sponsored program activity, accounting for almost half of the total activity for that sector in 2003-04. Goals for the next five years, shown below in Table 4, are an annual 5% increase in proposals submitted and an annual 2% increase in expenditures. Funding priorities include the Great Lakes Center, the Center for Excellence in Urban and Rural Education (CEURE), the Center for Development of Human Services (CDHS), the Center for Health and Social Research (CHSR), and the Fordham Center.

Table 4

Sponsored Research Expenditures (Direct + Indirect), 2003-04 Through 2009-10 (in Millions)


Discussion Item: Consideration of more ambitious sponsored research goals.

Discussion Item 3-Tenure and Promotion Review

Buffalo State College's faculty review process has evolved over the years. Institutional statements are found in the College's Directory of Policy Statements (DOPS), with relevant policies including "Procedures for Promotion of Faculty" (Section VI: 05:00) and "Policy Guidelines for Promotion" (Section VI: 05:01). The College's statement on research, recently revised to include applied research and the scholarship of teaching, guides institutional review. Documents pertaining to faculty personnel actions are distributed to all new faculty, discussed in the new faculty orientation program, and replicated in the revision of the faculty handbook. New faculty appointees agree to a letter of expectation that forms a framework of expectations for term reappointment, continuing appointment, and promotion reviews.

The review process for faculty will undergo examination as part of the planned 2005 reorganization of academic departments and schools.

Proposed commitment:

Buffalo State will actively seek to develop a procedure for external peer review of scholarship and research for all tenure-track faculty appointments.

Discussion Item 4-Retention and Graduation Rates

Principal among the activities undertaken to improve retention and graduation is the creation of the University College, a structure designed to organize, coordinate, and advance first-year programs and academic support initiatives likely to influence student success. Headed by a dean, the University College includes first-year programs (e.g., learning communities, freshmen seminars, writing program), Intellectual Foundations (General Education), academic support programs, advisement for students who have not selected a major, International and Exchange Programs, the academic opportunities cluster (e.g., honor's program, undergraduate research), the Educational Opportunity Program, grant-funded student service support programs, and academic standards and intervention.

The campus also plans to focus on the strengthening of advisement, with the goal of providing each undergraduate student with "a clear roadmap for timely completion of degree requirements."

Retention and graduation goals for the next five years are shown in Table 5.

Table 5

Projected Changes in Retention and Graduation Rates


Note: Dates in parentheses indicate cohort year

Discussion Item: Consideration of more aggressive goals for retention and graduation.