Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP)

By requiring accredited institutions to develop a Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) the SACS Commission on Colleges (COC) emphasizes its commitment to advancing the quality of higher education. The QEP affirms the COC belief that student learning is central to the mission of all higher education institutions. According to the COC, “the QEP describes a carefully designed course of action that addresses a well-defined and focused topic or issue related to enhancing student learning. The QEP should be embedded within the institution’s ongoing integrated institution-wide planning and evaluation process.”

Delta State University has identified improving cultural competence as the QEP topic. While several themes received praise and attention, cultural competence distinguished itself as a timely and relevant topic. Improving cultural competency at Delta State will assist students in discovering and learning about other cultures; understanding cultural biases and differences; improving intercultural communication skills; developing empathic skills; and moving effectively within a globalized society. As the literature suggests, working in an increasingly multicultural society and global economy takes more than just simple interaction. Cultural competence is not innate and cannot be assumed; by taking full advantage of its location, rich history, and bountiful cultural resources, DSU plans to be proactive in improving its students’ worldview.

To achieve these goals, DSU’s QEP Team created three primary student learning outcomes:

1. Describe various aspects of cultural diversity.

2. Articulate a shared understanding and support of cross-cultural experiences.

3. Evaluate cultural perspectives with openness and respect.



Quality Enhancement Plan Leadership Team

Name Department Office/Unit
Edwin Craft (S) Finance & Administration Technology Services
Robin Boyles (S) Institutional Grants
Teresa Houston (S) Student Business Services
Ann Margaret Mullins (S) Student Affairs Student Financial Assistance
Richard Houston (S) Counseling Center And Student Health Services
Paul Hankins (F) Provost & Academic Affairs College of Arts & Sciences
Marilyn Shultz (F) Languages And Literature
Douglas Mark (F) Music
Leslie Fadiga-Stewart (F) Social Sciences/History
Scott Drury (F) Counselor Education and Psychology
Vicki Webster (F) Acc, Cis, Finance
Julie Speakes (F) Commercial Aviation
Rebecca Hochradel (F) Mgt/Mkt/Bus Adm
Jamye Long (F) Mgt/Mkt/Bus Adm
Temika Simmons (F) Counselor Education And Psychology
Vicki Hartley (F) Teacher Education, Leadership, And Research
Vicki Bingham (F) Robert E. Smith School Of Nursing
David Salinero (F) Library Services
Joi Phillips (F) Library Services
Beverly Moon (S) Institutional Research And Planning
Staff University Relations Communications And Marketing
Gary Bouse (S) Development Alumni-Foundation
John Cassibry (Stu) Student Body Student Body
Charles Barber (Stu) Student Body
(F, Faculty); (S, Staff); (Stu, Student)

Whereas the Compliance Certification Report provides a snapshot of past and present practices at the University, the Quality Enhancement Plan points to the future. SACS spells out the following expectations for an acceptable QEP:

Core Requirement 2.12: The institution has developed an acceptable Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) that includes an institutional process for identifying key issues emerging from institutional assessment and focuses on learning outcomes and/or the environment supporting student learning and accomplishing the mission of the institution.

Comprehensive Standard 3.3.2: The institution has developed a Quality Enhancement Plan that (1) demonstrates institutional capability for the initiation, implementation, and completion of the QEP; (2) includes broad-based involvement of institutional constituencies in the development and proposed implementation of the QEP; and (3) identifies goals and a plan to assess their achievement.

Frequently Asked Questions about the QEP

What is SACS?

SACS stands for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. It is the primary accrediting body for educational institutions in the southern United States and Latin America. Every ten years, educational institutions must reaffirm their accreditation status.

Accreditation ensures that DSU:

  • Has a mission appropriate to higher education
  • Has resources and programs that adhere to the stated mission
  • Maintains educational objectives that are consistent with its mission and appropriate to the degrees it offers
  • Adheres to standards of quality, effectiveness, and integrity

Part of the reaffirmation process includes the creation of a Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).

What is the QEP?

The QEP is essentially a five-year action plan that:

  • Focuses on some aspect of enhancing student learning
  • Addresses a well-defined and focused topic
  • Creates an environment that supports the mission of the university
  • Becomes embedded in the institution’s long-term planning and evaluation

What are the steps to creating a successful QEP?

SACS has identified eight steps to creating a QEP:

1.       Select a Topic
2.       Research the Topic
3.       Define Student Learning Outcomes
4.       Identify Actions to be Implemented
5.       Establish a Timeline for Implementation
6.       Organize for Success
7.       Identify All Necessary Resources
8.       Create an Assessment Plan


What is DSU’s new QEP?

Delta State has selected improving cultural competency as the next QEP. The official title for the project is A World Class Experience: Improving Cultural Competency at Delta State. Being culturally competent will allow students to discover and learn about other cultures; understand cultural biases and differences; improve intercultural communication skills; and work effectively in today’s globalized society.

How will the QEP be implemented?

Over a five-year period beginning in fall 2014, several strategies will be used to incorporate cultural competence into 1) GST 100, 2) the general education curriculum, 3) many upper-level major courses in all degree programs, and 4) various extracurricular campus-wide events; this plan ensures that students will be exposed to the topic throughout their entire academic experience.

How will this plan be assessed?

Assessment is a necessary component of the QEP. To ensure that all goals and objectives are met, the QEP Team created three student learning outcomes that will be regularly assessed:

  • Describe various aspects of cultural diversity.
  • Articulate a shared understanding and support of cross-cultural experiences.
  • Evaluate cultural perspectives with openness and respect.

In addition to measuring these student learning outcomes, a number of other additional reports and surveys will be completed. They include the Freshmen Cultural Competence Survey, chairs’ Departmental QEP Reports, an annual QEP Survey for freshmen and seniors, and various other annual reviews.

How can you help?

Over the past two years, the entire campus has played a vital role in the development of A World Class Experience. Although the planning stages may be nearly complete, the QEP Advisory Group, in tandem with academic departments, will serve as the university’s mechanism for making any future changes to the plan. If you would like to serve on this group or simply provide advice or feedback, please contact Beverly Moon (bmoon@deltastate.edu) at 662-846-4700.

Where can I access more information?

Here are some useful links for more information on the QEP and SACS.

QEP Funding Request Form

This form is for Faculty/Staff/seeking sponsorship/co-sponsorship for campus events related to cultural topics.  Funding Request Form


QEP Course Documents

Outcome Tables



Intercultural Rubric




Recorded Webinars and Materials

Available Webinars Located in the QEP Office:

·         Move Beyond Civility: How to Facilitate Difficult Dialogues in the Classroom
·         Working with Your Student Activists: Ways to Establish Inclusive Dialogue, Positive Relationships                      and a Safe Campus When Activism Arises
·         Racial Tensions on Campus: How to Overcome Resistance and Encourage Inclusivity on Your Campus
·         Racial Climate Programs: Campus Strategies
·         Microaggressions: Strategies to Improve Your Campus Climate and Community
·         Beyond LGBTQ: Supporting the Spectrum of Sexual and Gender Identities of Your Students                 ·         Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion: Deepen the Cultural Competencies of Your Faculty and Staff 
  • Observing Holidays on Campus: Address Cultural Appropriation, Be Inclusive & Avoid Unintentionally Offending Students & Staff


Cultural Competency Webinars provide by Office of Academic Affairs: 

Available Books and Annotation List:

Robert Laforge Library
QEP Office


Classroom Resources



QEP Newsletters

Clothesline Project Video

QEP 2016-2017 Video




August 31 – Mississippi Encyclopedia

September 11 – 15 – Sexual Assault Awareness Week

September 12 – Wired for Sound

September 12 – Constitution Week

September 13 – Internship in DC

September 14 – IDEA Lunch

October 19 — Cine Club presents Sin Nombre

September 21 – Cine Club presents Paraiso

September 22 – Gender Studies Group Brownbag Lunch: Poetry Resisting Gender Normativity

September 27 – Wired For Sound

September 27 Professional Development Webinar: “Observing Holidays on Campus” 

September 28 — Cine Club presents La Casa de Los Espiritus (The House of the Spirits)

September 26 – 28 – Korean Traditional Music Events

October 1 -6 – Mississippi Bicentennial Events

     October 1-3: International Conference on the Blues @ GRAMMY Museum          Mississippi

     October 4 to end of October: Mississippi Visual Arts Juried Student Show @      BPAC Lobby

     October 4: Art Speaker Robin Whitfield @ 6 pm @ BPAC Recital Hall

     October 5: Okra Out Front Concert @ 6 pm @ Roberts-LaForge Library

     October 5: Poetry Slam @ 8 pm @ Mississippi Grounds Coffee Shop

     October 6: Gala Concert @ 7:30 pm @ Delta and Pine Land Theatre in                BPAC

October 23 – Annual Gadabout Film Festival

October 27 – La Tertulia                                                                                                         November 3 & 10

November 12 – Thanksgiving Lunch for International Students

November 15 – Know Your Rights

February 8 – National Civil Rights Museum and the Winchester’s Farmers Market Field Trip

February 2 – Singing of “Lift Every Voice and Sing”                                                            February 9                                                          February 23

February 7 – Black History Month

  • “Black Out”
  • IDEA (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Advocacy) Lunch “Hey, Professor Olgevee, Let’s Talk About Some African American History!”
  • Candlelight Memorial

February 12 –  I Am Not Your Negro film screening

February 14 – Café Scientifique “The Japanese Studies Institute: Integrating Japanese Culture into the Undergraduate Experience” with Dr. Douglas Mark and Mr. Chet Oguz

February 12 – 28 – Chinese New Year Celebration

February 14-15 – Sankofa: African American History on Wheels

February 18 – Chinese New Year Celebration and Open House with cooking demonstrations and tastings, museum tours, and activities.

February 20 – Delta Epiphany: Robert F. Kennedy in Mississippi guest lecture

February 22 – Japanese Internment Camp Museum Field Trip

April 4 – 5 – Civil Rides

April 5 – La Tertulia

April 5 –  21st Annual Sammy O Cranford Memorial Lecture

April 10 – Equal Pay Day

April 12 – La Tertulia

April 18 – Professional Development Webinar: “Overcome Unconscious Bias: Breakdown Barriers to Equity and Inclusion for Students, Faculty, and Administrators”

April 19 -La Tertulia

April 23 – Fannye Cook: Mississippi’s Pioneering Conservationist performance @ 6 pm @ Jobe Hall Auditorium

Contact Information 

Email: qep@deltastate.edu

Coordinator: Michelle Johansen


Facebook: www.facebook.com/DSUQEP/