Decision Analysis Case Study: Valley of the Sun Reviews
For many of the remaining topics in BUS-660, assignments will be in the form of case studies. These case studies are designed to provide an opportunity to engage in that topic’s quantitative analysis method, as well as demonstrate critical thinking and appropriate professional communication.
Based on the information presented in the case study, create a decision tree or Excel-based analysis to determine the most appropriate recommendation.
In a 500-750-word report to VSA’s Human Resources department and the chief financial officer, explain your approach and the rationale for this method. Evaluate both outcomes and how they would be applied to this decision. Conclude your report with your recommendation for the review process VSA should adopt.
Submit your Excel-based analysis or decision tree with your report.
Prepare the assignment according to the guidelines found in the APA Style Guide, located in the Student Success Center. An abstract is not required.
This assignment uses a rubric. Please review the rubric prior to beginning the assignment to become familiar with the expectations for successful completion.
You are required to submit this assignment to Turnitin. Please refer to the directions in the Student Success Center.
Decision Analysis Case Study:
Valley of the Sun Reviews
Valley of the Sun Academy (VSA) is an online school specializing in GED programs for the Phoenix area. Valley of the Sun Academy enrolls 813 students and has a part-time faculty pool of 65 online instructors.
Online faculty are reviewed annually and provided with feedback about their facilitation techniques, content expertise, engagement, and classroom management. If necessary, remediation and additional support are provided by the Faculty Advisory Board (FAB). The online faculty reviews are one factor used to determine overall performance, teaching status, and potential performance appraisals.
Recently, the FAB submitted a proposal for a new approach for the next fiscal year, the Peer Faculty Performance Review (PFPR). Human Resources (HR) and the school’s chief financial officer are evaluating the suggestion against the current design, described by VSA’s director. Both review processes are outlined below.
Valley of the Sun Academy uses an external firm, TeachBest Consulting, to conduct annual reviews for online faculty. The review team is composed of faculty members at other online institutions, including universities and high schools. Valley of the Sun Academy faculty are not part of the review process, and TeachBest Consulting handles hiring and training internally. Valley of the Sun Academy’s HR department assigns completed courses to review, and VSA’s Technical Support team is responsible for providing access.
Once completed, the TeachBest consultant submits the review form toVSA’s HR department, and HR submits a payment for each review. In addition, VSA has an annual contract with TeachBest Consulting.
The overall contract is $2,500/year. If VSA’s enrollment reaches 1,000 or more students or their faculty pool expands to 75 or more instructors, the contract amount will increase to $5,000/year. There is a 75% chance the student enrollment will reach 1,000 students within the next 18months and a 25% chance enrollment will not increase. During the next nine months, Human Resources anticipates hiring at least six math instructors.
Individual reviewers are paid $75 for each review. Reviews are conducted in March, July, and November, with all faculty reviewed by December 1.
Valley of the Sun Academy is responsible for disseminating the results of the review to faculty members. If questions arise about review results, the FAB is responsible for verifying the review and responding to the instructor. Periodically, the Faculty Advisory Board finds fault with the initial review and follow-up must be scheduled. Each year, about 5% of the initial reviews are found to be inaccurate and new reviews must be scheduled. Valley of the Sun Academy pays a discounted price of $50 for each follow-up review.
Peer Faculty Performance Review (PFPR) Proposal
The FAB proposes to conduct faculty reviews in-house and no longer contract TeachBest Consulting. Human Resources will review faculty files and invite the top three performing instructors in four disciplines (Literacy and Communication, Social Sciences, Math, and Science and Technology) to join the PFPR committee.
Initial responsibilities will involve creating a new review form and conducting a norming session for consistency. There will be ongoing technology fees of $20/month for each reviewer, to ensure access to create and complete the review forms. There will also be an initial cost to set up the norming session. The Faculty Advisory Board recommends one of three options:
1. A $500 session that can be scheduled at any time with TeachBest Consulting.
2. A $750 session offered monthly by an external employee development firm.
3. A session designed by VSA’s HR and instructional design specialists, which would be free to attend but would require internal time and labor costs; HR anticipates a start of two months from implementation would prevent interrupting normal business practices.
Because the responsibilities are not included in current faculty contracts, FAB recommends stipends of $50 for each review completed. With the new internal PFPR process, FAB anticipates faculty reviews would no longer be overturned and there would not be a need to conduct secondary reviews. Additionally, FAB expects reviews to move to a 9-month rolling cycle rather than once every academic year.
ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE CLASS
Discussion Questions (DQ)
Initial responses to the DQ should address all components of the questions asked, include a minimum of one scholarly source, and be at least 250 words.
Successful responses are substantive (i.e., add something new to the discussion, engage others in the discussion, well-developed idea) and include at least one scholarly source.
One or two sentence responses, simple statements of agreement or “good post,” and responses that are off-topic will not count as substantive. Substantive responses should be at least 150 words.
I encourage you to incorporate the readings from the week (as applicable) into your responses.
Your initial responses to the mandatory DQ do not count toward participation and are graded separately.
In addition to the DQ responses, you must post at least one reply to peers (or me) on three separate days, for a total of three replies.
Participation posts do not require a scholarly source/citation (unless you cite someone else’s work).
Part of your weekly participation includes viewing the weekly announcement and attesting to watching it in the comments. These announcements are made to ensure you understand everything that is due during the week.
APA Format and Writing Quality
Familiarize yourself with APA format and practice using it correctly. It is used for most writing assignments for your degree. Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for APA paper templates, citation examples, tips, etc. Points will be deducted for poor use of APA format or absence of APA format (if required).
Cite all sources of information! When in doubt, cite the source. Paraphrasing also requires a citation.
I highly recommend using the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.
Use of Direct Quotes
I discourage overutilization of direct quotes in DQs and assignments at the Masters’ level and deduct points accordingly.
As Masters’ level students, it is important that you be able to critically analyze and interpret information from journal articles and other resources. Simply restating someone else’s words does not demonstrate an understanding of the content or critical analysis of the content.
It is best to paraphrase content and cite your source.
For assignments that need to be submitted to LopesWrite, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.
Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.
Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?
Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.
The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.
Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.
If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.
I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.
As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.
Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me:
Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.
Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.