Our Work
Shannon Looney
Project Manager
Collaborating for Change


University of Akron


University of Akron’s transformation planning process focused on creating a more personalized learning environment–one that is more flexible for students, cost effective for the university, and leverages technology in new and innovative ways. Accordingly, the university experimented with data analytics and big ideas that allowed the university to reimagine and unbundle the student experience.

Transformation Highlights:

Teaching and Learning:

University of Akron’s transformation process explores content delivery and assessing student learning outside traditional higher education boundaries. Central to Akron’s transformational work is the institution’s effort to better understand how to unbundle services and processes from the traditional credit hour model to better serve all students.

The university is reimagining the student experience by leveraging data to better understand student learning and employer demand. Course construction has also transformed: rather than individual faculty developing a given course, the process is now more collaborative, faculty-led, and inclusive of student learning outcomes and competencies.

Transformation does not stop within the university. The university prototyped a new competency based program, the Certificate of Advanced Spanish for the Health Professions and First Responders, which provides Spanish language training to enhance fluency among first responders in the region. The program offers hybrid courses taught entirely in Spanish and works specifically with working adults from the local Children’s Hospital and students enrolled in other health programs at the university.

Featured Project & Initiative

The Data Literacy Institute – a partnership between APLU and the Association for Institutional Research with funding from Ascendium – brings together cross-departmental teams from 11 Powered by Publics institutions from Cluster 14 to engage in training that enhance their use of data to improve equitable student outcomes. In May 2022, Powered by Publics held […]

Featured Publication

2022 APLU Annual Report