• Diversity of Expertise and Background on Peer Review Teams

    December 10, 2020 - WSCUC

Peer review teams composed of volunteers from across higher education serve a critical function in institutional reviews. Teams review and make recommendations to the WSCUC Commission as to whether an institution is meeting WSCUC standards, and also provide valuable insights to help the institution improve its effectiveness.

WSCUC is committed to fielding diverse, skillful review teams in terms of race, ethnicity, gender, professional background, and areas of expertise. We seek to compose teams that reflect institutions’ communities, drawing on both experienced and new reviewers. WSCUC is making a concerted effort to increase the diversity of peer review teams. This has included inviting more women to the role of team chair and gathering more complete data on the race, ethnicity, and gender identity of volunteers. Specifically, to generate the information needed to build diverse teams, staff reconfigured the volunteer profile to require a response to race and ethnicity (with an option for “prefer not to respond”) and simplified the expertise section. Although these simple questions do not fully capture the diversity and richness of perspectives, we now have more information to develop knowledgeable teams that help us achieve our diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

We encourage everyone interested in volunteering as peer reviewers on future accreditation reviews to complete our Volunteer Interest Form.