Academic Affairs

Welcome to Academic Affairs

In the Academic Affairs Division, we support the Minnesota State mission by developing initiatives that promote quality and accountability of academic programming as we strive to prepare all students for the workforce and professional careers in a globally, culturally and linguistically diverse world. We are focused on effective and innovative teaching with an assurance of collaboratively planned and high-quality academic programs throughout the state. Most importantly, we provide knowledgeable support and shared resources for those on our campuses who directly serve students in the fulfillment of their aspirations and learning achievements.

We work with Minnesota State faculty, staff, and students to make sure all students can plan sensible and straightforward educational paths to their certificate and degree completion. Our colleges and universities provide a wide range of academic offerings and enrichment experiences for both our undergraduate and graduate students.

For more information about Academic Affairs:

The Academic Programs and Quality Assurance unit supports the Minnesota State colleges and universities in providing high-quality programs. Notice of Intent’s are listed below to provide statewide opportunity for review and comment regarding newly proposed programs. Individuals with a StarID may use the ASA Connect site for Academic Programs or to comment within the Program Navigator software.

As designees of the Chancellor, the unit provides system leadership and support for academic programs policies and procedures and manages the official inventory of Minnesota State academic programs. All approved academic programs are searchable in the top banner under Campuses & Programs. Transfer Pathways and Health Sciences or Engineering Technology Broadfield transfer programs offer unique transfer opportunities for students. Academic Programs and Quality Assurance unit works with Minnesota State colleges and universities to:

  1. Ensure quality and excellence that is competitive on a national and international level in meeting the needs of students for occupational, general, undergraduate, and graduate education;
  2. Facilitate ease of transfer among schools and programs, integrate course credit, and coordinate degree programs;
  3. Give the highest priority to meeting the needs of Minnesota employers for a highly skilled and adaptable workforce;
  4. Enhance Minnesota's quality of life by developing an understanding and appreciation of a free and diverse society; and
  5. Eliminate unnecessary duplication of programs and achieve high quality programs to meet the diverse needs of the Minnesota workforce.

Related policy and procedure:

Students enroll in Minnesota State colleges and universities with varying levels of academic readiness in core course subject areas like mathematics, reading, and writing.  In order to ensure students have the highest likelihood for success in their courses, a variety of assessments may be used to best align a student’s level of academic readiness with the coursework they enroll in.

Assessments of Academic Readiness

Students can demonstrate their academic readiness based on their performance on a variety of assessments. Students may submit any of the following assessment scores to determine their course placement and enrollment into college-level courses.

  • Subject area test scores from a nationally-normed college entrance exam, including the ACT and the SAT. Students who meet college-level benchmarks on the ACT or SAT are not required to take a developmental-level course in that subject area.
  • Starting in the 2017-2018 academic year, students who attended a Minnesota high school can submit subject area test scores from the high school Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments (MCA) in reading and mathematics. Students whose grade 10 MCA Reading and/or grade 11 MCA Mathematics scores that meet the designated benchmark in the subject area, within the validation window, are not required to take a developmental-level course in that subject area. This link provides more information for secondary schools on how MCAs are used.
  • Subject area test scores from a course placement assessment, Accuplacer, may also be considered to demonstrate academic readiness to enroll in college-level courses.  Each of the Minnesota State colleges and universities offer the Accuplacer assessments. The following link provides more information on the Accuplacer.

Course Placement and Developmental Education

When students meet the qualifying benchmarks in a subject area on any of the eligible assessments, they can enroll in college-level courses that have that indicating course prerequisite. If a student does not meet qualifying benchmarks on any of the eligible assessments, they may need to enroll in additional coursework to increase their foundational academic skills to improve their likelihood of success in college level courses. In these instances, a student may be recommended or required to enroll in a developmental-level course and must successfully complete the course prior to enrolling in college-level courses. Developmental education courses are designed to build academic readiness in reading, writing, or mathematics. Courses are also available at many institutions specifically designed to meet the needs of English Language Learners. Developmental education courses are credit-bearing but do not count toward the requirements of degrees, diplomas or certificates. This coursework is critical in addressing the readiness gaps that students arrive with when they enter postsecondary institutions. Colleges and universities offer developmental education to ensure access to higher education for all students that need support to be academically prepared for college-level coursework in their programs and majors.

The Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Board Policy 3.3 and System Procedure 3.3.1 outline the system-wide requirements for assessing academic readiness to enroll in courses that require college-level reading, writing, and/or mathematics skills.

Contact

Janica Austad Ed.D.
Interim System Director, P-20 and College Readiness
651-201-1424
Janica.Austad@MinnState.edu

The Academic Affairs College Faculty Credentialing unit develops policies and procedures to assure qualified individuals perform faculty work in our two-year colleges through system-established faculty minimum qualifications under Board Policy 3.32 College Faculty Credentialing and Procedure 3.32.1 College Faculty Credentialing. This applies to faculty positions governed by the Minnesota State College Faculty (MSCF) bargaining agreement.

The Joint Committee on Credential Fields is an ongoing committee established under the Minnesota State College Faculty (MSCF) collective bargaining agreement. Its purpose is to make recommendations regarding credential fields and minimum qualifications for two-year faculty. This includes the alignment of appropriate credential fields with programs and disciplines at the system level. The committee is comprised of six faculty members appointed by MSCF and six college administrators appointed by the System Office.

Committee's charge document

Credential fields with their associated minimum qualifications are found on this website. A credential field, assigned field or license field means a defined area of knowledge and skill that is specifically related to a program, service, or academic discipline, and for which system-established minimum qualifications have been created.  Assigned fields are associated with faculty positions formerly governed by the Minnesota Community College Faculty Association bargaining agreement and license fields are associated with faculty positions formerly governed by the United Technical College Educators' bargaining agreement.

Credential fields will replace assigned fields and license fields upon completion of the conversion process specified in Procedure 3.32.1.

College Faculty Credentialing Unit Staff

Wendy McCance
Wendy.McCance@MinnState.edu
651-201-1768

More Resources

» Board Policy 3.32
» Board Procedure 3.32.1
» Credential Fields Search

This site offers a general introduction to the principles and models for successful collaborations and advice on overcoming barriers. The site also includes an assessment of your readiness to begin a collaboration opportunity and a library of resources and contacts for creating all types of collaboration in Minnesota State.

Collaboration is defined as a process to reach goals that cannot be achieved by one single agent. It is a mutually beneficial and well-defined relationship entered into by two or more organizations to achieve common goals. It includes the following components:

  • Jointly developing and agreeing on a set of common goals and directions;
  • Sharing responsibility for obtaining those goals;
  • Working together to achieve those goals, using the expertise and resources of each collaborator.

Collaboration stresses sharing risks and responsibilities towards a jointly defined goal such as providing support services for students. It increases the likelihood that the goal can be met. Collaboration is not always effective. It is not always appropriate. Sometimes it might even result in greater costs than independent efforts. It does offer a strategic tool of value in many situations.

The seven Minnesota State universities offer the graduate programs and courses you need to meet HLC concurrent enrollment guidelines, delivered online to fit your schedule. Learn more about Pathway to 18.

The Minnesota State Student Planner is a web-based student planning system that can be accessed on any device connected to the internet and includes:

  • Degree Audits - in the Audits tab
  • Graduation Planner - in the Plans & Roadmaps tab
  • Schedule Builder - in the Schedules tab

More information and how-to guides for the Minnesota State Student Planner.

Minnesota State institutions work together to make transferring as easy as possible. Whether its the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MN TC), Transfer Pathways, or the transfer agreement with the Minnesota Tribal Colleges, Minnesota State has the answers you need. Learn more about Transfer Options.

Academic Affairs Staff

Satasha Green-Stephen, J.D., PhD 
Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs
651-201-1496 
Satasha.Green@MinnState.edu 

Jesse Mason
Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
651-201-1496
Jesse.Mason@MinnState.edu

Laura Boche 
Coordinator for Strategic Initiatives, System Office 
651-201-1837 
Laura.Boche@MinnState.edu 

Janica Austad Ed.D.
Interim System Director, P-20 and College Readiness
651-201-1424
Janica.Austad@MinnState.edu

Latrice Eggleston Williams, Ph.D
Interim Director of Accreditation and Assessment
Latrice.EgglestonWilliams@MinnState.edu

Jessica Espinosa 
Director, College Transitions 
651-201-1651 
Jessica.Espinosa@MinnState.edu

Eri Fujieda, Ph.D., P.M.P 
Interim Director of Program Support and Quality Assurance 
651-201-1837 
Eri.Fujieda@MinnState.edu

Sheri Hutchinson, Ph.D. 
Academic Program Director 
651-201-1684 
Sheri.Hutchinson@MinnState.edu

Cassandra Levesque 
Degree Audit Support Analyst 
651-201-1653 
Cassandra.Levesque@MinnState.edu

Jessica Migler 
Assistant Director for Transfer 
651- 201-1815 
Jessica.Migler@MinnState.edu

Marta Mohr, PhD 
System Director for Transfer and Degree Audit Support 
651-201-1496 
Marta.Mohr@MinnState.edu

Kathy Pilugin 
Administrative Assistant 
Academic Affairs, Institutional Research 
651-201-1466
Kathy.Pilugin@MinnState.edu

Kelly Ponto Watrin, MA 
uAchieve Planner and Schedule Builder Support Analyst 
Kelly.PontoWatrin@MinnState.edu

Sandi Quiñones 
Assistant to Associate Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs 
651-724-9012 
Sandi.Quinones@MinnState.edu

Employees can access Academic Affairs information on ASA SharePoint/Connect using your StarID@MinnState.edu and password.