Executive Summary of BYU Communication Disorders Department’s Strategic Plan

Our current mission statement and core values for the Communication Disorder department were collaboratively composed by the current department faculty in 2021. The mission statement and core values are foundational to our strategic plan and decision making.

 

We build belonging, achievement, and growth through Christlike service to:

  • Empower lifelong learners 
  • Engage in impactful research
  • Provide compassionate, evidence-based clinical care

Core Values: Belonging, Becoming, Collaboration, Kindness

 

Our department mission statement is aligned with our university aims which state that “BYU seeks to develop students of faith, intellect, and character who have the skills and the desire to continue learning and to serve others throughout their lives.” Essentially, the aims remind us that “education at BYU should be spiritually strengthening, intellectually enlarging, character building and leading to lifelong learning and service”. Our program learning outcomes are aligned at the course and program level.

Faculty discussions, anonymous departmental surveys and the strategic planning committee have contributed to the vision of a dynamic strategic plan. To build on the positive progress of our department we are currently focused on the following objectives and values:

 

Becoming

Faculty development

  • CFS mentoring - our department is comprised of a significant number of junior faculty who are being mentored for successful achievement of university continuing faculty status in areas of teaching, scholarship, professional contributions and service.

Graduate Program Growth and undergraduate program development

  • We have a goal of significantly increasing our graduate cohort size and are actively approaching the university with requests for resources and support.
  • We are exploring alternate thesis options to allow for rigorous research opportunities and mentoring while balancing scalability of our graduate cohort.
  • We are working to increase the mentorship and resources for undergraduate students interested in pursuing graduate programs in audiology.
  • We are exploring potential for elective courses.
  • We are exploring student opportunities for professional shadowing and for SLP-A readiness.

            Use of Space

  • We are working towards a vision of dedicated classrooms and lab spaces that provide state of the art learning opportunities, research, and collaborative gathering through remodeling and expansion.

 

Belonging

            Diversity

  • We are redesigning our undergraduate LEP admissions process and our graduate admissions process to reflect current evidence-based methods of increasing equitable access and diversity among our undergraduate and graduate cohorts.
  •  We are increasing student programs at the undergraduate and graduate level for orientation processes following admission to increase a culture of belonging among our students.
  •  We are utilizing outreach TAs and the BE (Belonging and Equity) in ComD committee to decrease microaggressions and promote mentorship in undergraduate and graduate students.

           

Collaboration

            Visiting Scholars

  • We are planning annual continuing education opportunities for our students and community professionals with visiting scholars who complement and augment the research of our department faculty.
  • These professional development events are designed to build relationships with our community partners, maintain ties with our alumni and provide networking opportunities for our students.
  •  The exposure to new research and cutting-edge evidence-based methods are intended to increase lifelong learning and elevate the services in our community.
  • The costs of these events are supported by funds from the Academic Vice President’s office and provided at no cost to the participants.

ComD network night

  • We are working together with representatives from the college and BYU Career Services in planning an annual event to invite undergraduate and graduate students to meet together and learn from community professionals in the fields of Audiology and Speech- Language Pathology.
  • This event is designed to allow networking and increase working knowledge of the professions for all students from undergraduate freshman pre-majors to seasoned graduate students.
  • This event is planned to allow collaboration with our community partners and provide opportunities of growth for our students

 

We believe that our core values and mission are helping us to align our focus, efforts and decisions.  We are grateful to be a part of an impactful and robust field while housed at a supportive university. We are proud of the growth and vision that our department currently has. In the past few years there have been substantial changes to the faculty due to retirement of many senior faculty. This was anticipated and a significant focus of the prior strategic plan.  We look forward to continued growth and development as we work together inclusively to build belonging, achievement and growth through Christlike service.