Penn State's 'Innovation Insights' published by NACUBO

Based on Penn State’s popular "Innovation Insights" series from the Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment, "Integrating Planning, Assessment, and Improvement in Higher Education" brings together in one handy reference nearly a decade of tried and true insights. The book is published by published by the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). Penn State’s five-step model for integrating planning, assessment, and improvement moves plans off the shelf and into the weekly and daily scheduling and prioritizing process. It uses assessment as a guide for future actions and goals, and process improvement, innovation, and reengineering as a means to implement a plan.

Supported by data and tools, readers will learn how to create a culture of innovation; adopt a student-centered approach to continuous quality improvement, lead a successful innovation, make accurate assessments, foster teamwork and collaboration, and implement plans. Drawing on Penn State’s IMPROVE method, as well as many other leaders in the field, this book offers proven methods and tools for running effective meetings, facilitating teams, conducting surveys, using focus groups, benchmarking, and developing strategic performance indicators.

Barbara Sherlock, editor of the book, is a planning and improvement associate in Penn State University’s Office of Planning and Institutional Assessment. The office provides facilitation and consulting services, institutional research and analysis, and educational and networking opportunities to support planning, improvement and assessment initiatives at the unit and University level, and publishes the "Innovation Insights" series on the Web.

Sherlock previously served in the United States Navy including as executive officer of Penn State’s NROTC unit and in command, attaining the rank of Commander. She co-edited the second edition of "To Get The Job Done: Readings in Leadership and Management" for Naval Institute Press. She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from Wellesley College, a master's of business administration from Pepperdine University, and a master of science in computer science from the Naval Postgraduate School. She has shared her experiences and approaches in facilitating planning and improvement at conferences sponsored by the National Consortium for Continuous Improvement in Higher Education (NCCI), Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) and International Association of Facilitators (IAF).

For more information visit or contact Barbara Sherlock, by e-mail at or by phone at 814-863-8721.

Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

Last Updated January 09, 2015