Texas Tech University

Task Force Working Groups

Task Force

In fall of 2014, department chairs and associate deans nominated individuals to be considered for appointment to the Provost's Task Force on Student Success and Retention. Following the Deans' review of all nominations, 30 individuals were appointed to this important advisory group. In the selection process, the aim was to build a diverse group whose members would offer their unique departmental, college, and/or administrative perspectives. Each of these will be essential to our efforts. The task force will work to ensure that students reach even higher levels of excellence and success while at Texas Tech.

Minutes of Task Force Meetings

Task Force Working Groups

These working groups were created to provide each member with at least two focused areas for meaningful contribution. Additional groups will be established as needed.

Academic Enhancement & Interventions

What I like about these interventions is that the kids themselves make all the tough choices. They deserve all the credit. We as interveners don't. And that's the best way to intervene. Ultimately a person has within themselves some kind of capital, some kind of asset, like knowledge or confidence. And if we can help bring that out, they then carry that asset with them to the next difficulty in life.


Tough, P. (2014, May 15). Who Gets to Graduate? The New York Times.

Working Group Co-Chairs

Patrick Hughes
Michael Serra

Working Group Members

Fanni Coward
Sukant Misra
Laura Heinz
Cindy Akers
Christine Blakney
Stefanie Borst
Becky Wilson
Jeremy Mason
Sam Jackson
Jennifer Snead
Jamie L Perez
Michelle Kiser

Assessment & Accountability

It's almost certain that in the future, colleges and universities will be expected to provide much more information about what and how much students learn during college. Institutions are not of one mind, of course, about whether and how to do this. There are justifiable worries about people drawing erroneous conclusions from data. Another risk is that making visible all our laundry - some clean and some not so clean - will have the adverse effect of stifling candid internal discussions about where improvements need to be made and will discourage efforts to address such shortcomings. These concerns are real and not trivial.


Kuh, G. D. (2011, March 1). They'll Love You Just the Way You Are: Tiptoeing Toward Transparency [Blog].

Working Group Co-Chairs

Cathy Duran
Katherine Austin-Beltz

Working Group Members

Sukant Misra
Laura Heinz
Christine Blakney
Becky Wilson
Ethan Logan
Kevin Stoker
Susan Tomlinson

Academic Advising

The retention literature offers clear evidence of the importance of academic advising to a successful student experience. The pool of research about academic advising continues to grow; yet a few pieces of scholarship have been instrumental in helping to shape the direction of that research and the development of academic advising as a field and profession. In particular, the works of Bean and Eaton (2002), Kuh et al. (2005), and Tinto (1993) all point to the significant role that academic advising plays in effective retention programs and, more importantly, in the individual experiences of students.


Drake, J. K., Jordan, P., & Miller, M. A. (Eds.). (2013). Academic advising approaches: Strategies that teach students to make the most of college (1st ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Working Group Co-Chairs

Catherine Nutter
Mitzi Lauderdale

Working Group Members


Cindy Akers
Keith Dye
Stefanie Borst
Jeremy Mason
Lori Rodriguez
Sam Jackson
Jennifer Snead
Jamie L Perez

Analysis & Technology Ecosystem

Today, all aspects of a college or university's experience and its operations are supported by technology. The challenge is to move the use of technology beyond automation to engagement. Administrative and academic systems generate data that can feed analytics tools, which in turn can help optimize campus services, improve data-led decision making, personalize learning, and inform how best to support at-risk students. The ability of digital technologies to facilitate connections and interactions, and to generate observable data about the connections and interactions they facilitate, allows institutions to identify and capitalize on efficiencies and ways to improve effectiveness, transforming how we work and learn. For example, well-designed system interfaces can promote self-service, speeding transactions and reducing personnel costs while increasing user satisfaction. In the learning context, technologies can make activities not only more flexible across time and distance but also more interactive and engaging, such as when social media enables learners to sustain dialogue and share knowledge outside class and across institutions.


Oblinger, D. G. (2014). DESIGNED to Engage. Educause Review, 49(5), 12.

Working Group Co-Chairs

Adrienne Carnes
Keith Dye

Working Group Members

Lori Rodriguez
Fanni Coward
Katherine Austin-Beltz
Michael Farmer
Todd Chambers