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BCC trustees evaluate the Barton experience
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What are Ends?


In 1990 Dr. John Carver published the book "Boards That Make a Difference: A New Design for Leadership in Nonprofit and Public Organizations." He created and trademarked the leadership model.

Barton Community College’s Board of Trustees operates under the Carver Policy Governance model. Under this model, one mission of the board is to adopt Ends, and periodically review whether the Ends are being met.

According to, the "Authoritative Website" for the Carver model, "ends" is not just jargon for "goals." "The ends concept – unique to Policy Governance – is a very special type of goal, one that designates the results for which the organization exists, the recipients or beneficiaries of those results, and the worth of the results or the results for certain recipient groups. There is no existing management term that combines these elements. Moreover, the words goal and objective refer to ends sometimes and to non-ends sometimes. Since the ends/means distinction is a basis for designing good governance, the use of traditional management terms would be dysfunctional."







The administrators of Barton Community College say that surveys show students have a positive rating of their "Barton Experience."

Dean of Information Services Charles Perkins addressed the topic last week during his monthly monitoring report on Ends Statements. A board policy titled Barton Experience is defined by three Ends Statements:

• Students will be positive about their Barton experience.

• In exit surveys and other feedback report mechanisms, students will speak positively of their experiences at Barton.

• Students will cite individual, personal, caring attention from faculty and staff as a significant factor in how they perceive their experience at Barton.

While most monitoring reports are based on some kind of measurement, Perkins started his report with anecdotal evidence.

"At graduation, you’ll see it in the students’ eyes, and you’ll see it in the faculty’s eyes. ... There’s a tremendous amount of pride. ... Those are things I can’t do a survey on. I can’t do a chart or put it into something that we can measure."

Students do praise the caring staff, Perkins said, showing some nominations submitted for the outstanding faculty award. And some measurements do exit.

All students preparing to graduate from the college receive a Graduation Application Survey. In the Spring 2011 survey, students were asked, "How do you rate the overall educational experience at Barton?" Seventy percent answered "rewarding," 24 percent answered "good," and 6 percent answered "adequate." Students were also asked, "Did you accomplish the goal you set upon enrollment at Barton?" and 98 percent answered "yes."

Other survey items looked specifically at instruction. For example, students were asked if they agreed with the statement "My degree provided a variety of useful educational experiences." To this question, 67 percent said "always" and 27 percent said "most of the time." Some had no opinion or didn’t answer, and 5 percent answered "seldom" or "never."

The percent of those who found their experience with student services "rewarding" or "good" was lower, but Perkins said that is because not all students used the services. Only a few (2-6 percent, depending on the question) rated the 17 student services as "poor" or "disappointing." Services included the admissions office, academic advising, financial aid office, housing, food service, book store, grounds/maintenance, and security and safety. Most who used these services gave them passing marks, and the most common rating was "rewarding."

Services least used by students were housing (62 percent did not use), health services (57), food services (54), tutoring (54) career planning and placement (51), student activities (44) and the library (41). Surveys taken in the spring of 2010 and spring of 2009 showed the percent of students not using the library increased 5 percent. The percent of students not using career planning and placement services rose from 42 percent in 2009 to 48 in 2010 and to 51 percent in 2011.

According to Perkins, 99 percent of those students said their overall educational experience at Barton was positive, and 98 percent would recommend the college to others.

Another statistical view of the Barton Experience comes from the Title III eCourse survey. It was submitted to 4,150 students with an 85.6 percent response rate (3,553 students). According to Perkins, 95 percent expressed satisfaction with the student and academic services offered at all BCC locations, including the Barton County campus, Fort Riley and Grandview Plaza. That percentage does drop to "67-68 percent if you take out the neutrals," he said.

Yet another statistical view comes from an independent source, the Community College Survey of Student Engagement. According to the latest results, from spring of 2010, "we’re not above the national average and we’re not below the national average," Perkins said. There were two exceptions, where Barton was close to but "statistically below" the mean score. Students were asked "How satisfied are you with the services?" and asked to rate each service on a scale of 1 (poor) to 4 (excellent). The two that dipped below average were the computer labs used to complete assignments and the labs for improving skills such as writing and math.

The CCSSE survey asked students how they would rate their overall college experience. Barton’s 3.19 rating was not statistically different than the 3.16 mean, Perkins said. "On a nationally normed survey, we are normal."