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ERIC Number: ED360919
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-May
Pages: 18
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Virtual Office: An Organizational Paradigm for Institutional Research in the 90's. AIR 1993 Annual Forum Paper.
Matross, Ronald P.
In response to conflicting centralization and decentralization pressures, the University of Minnesota institutional research office responded with a "virtual enterprising"--a group of organizationally distinct units acting as if they were a single unit. The four elements in this organizational approach were: (1) "soft control" through data base design; (2) a "favor bank"--a step toward functional project teams; (3) a common publication outlet with peer review; and (4) a shared master plan. Soft control helped separated analysts to do consistent work with less effort and to use consistent official data and definitions more easily through modifications in the data base. The favor bank offered a modest chance for some ties across division and department lines in a setting where team projects are a rarity. A jointly published series of brief reports, "Research on University of Minnesota Students," allowed researchers to package analyses and data in a format useful to busy administrators. The shared master plan put individual studies in a master plan of core studies to fill in gaps, cover key issues, and put them all on a schedule. The plan begins with a template of four study categories: student outcomes; marketing studies; evaluation of student services and programs; and student characteristics. An example of the common publication and part of the master plan are appended. (Contains six references.) (JB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Researchers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A