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Strategic Plan – Focus on Effectiveness

All the content from the Strategic Plan is provided here. If you require a printable version (pdf) of the plan, please contact Holly Mikesell for a PDF copy.


Boise State University is a public, metropolitan research university providing leadership in academics, research, and civic engagement. The university offers an array of undergraduate degrees and experiences that foster student success, lifelong learning, community engagement, innovation, and creativity. Research, creative activity, and graduate programs, including select doctoral degrees, advance new knowledge and benefit the community, the state and the nation. The university is an integral part of its metropolitan environment and is engaged in its economic vitality, policy issues, professional and continuing education programming, and cultural enrichment.


Boise State University aspires to be a research university known for the finest undergraduate education in the region, and outstanding research and graduate programs. With its exceptional faculty, staff and student body, and its location in the heart of a thriving metropolitan area, the university will be viewed as an engine that drives the Idaho economy, providing significant return on public investment.

Strategic Plan Goals and Objectives

Note that in this document, the “Strategies” of Boise State University’s original plan have been consolidated into “Objectives” to match the template of the Idaho State Board of Education.

“NSSE” refers to the National Survey of Student Engagement, which is used by Boise State University every three years to gather information from freshmen and seniors on a variety of aspects of their educational experiences. Because NSSE is taken by a substantial number of institutions, Boise State is able to benchmark itself against peer institutions.

Scores indicate if Boise State is statistically the same, higher, or lower than peers. Scores above 100%, for example 105%, indicate Boise State would score 5% better than peers.

Goal 1: Create a signature, high quality educational experience for all students

Objectives for Goal 1 include:

  • A: Develop the Foundational Studies Program into a memorable centerpiece of the undergraduate experience.
  • B: Provide a relevant, impactful educational experience that includes opportunities within and across disciplines for experiential learning.
  • C: Cultivate intellectual community among students and faculty and facilitate respect for the diversity of human cultures, institutions, and experiences.
  • D: Invest in faculty development, innovative pedagogies, and an engaging environment for learning.

Goal 1 Objectives and Performance Measures

Goal 2: Facilitate the timely attainment of educational goals of our diverse student population

Objectives for Goal 2 include:

  • A: Design and implement innovative policies and procedures that remove barriers to graduation and facilitate student success.
  • B: Ensure that faculty and staff understand their responsibilities in facilitating student success.
  • C: Bring classes to students using advanced technologies and multiple delivery formats.

Goal 2 Objectives and Performance Measures

Goal 3: Gain distinction as a doctoral research university

Objectives for Goal 3 include:

  • A: Build infrastructure for research and creative activity; support and reward interdisciplinary collaboration; and recruit, retain, and support highly qualified faculty, staff, and students from diverse backgrounds.
  • B: Identify and invest in select areas of excellence with the greatest potential for economic, societal, and cultural benefit, including the creation of select doctoral programs with a priority in professional and STEM disciplines.

Goal 3 Objectives and Performance Measures

Goal 4: Align university programs and activities with community needs

Objectives for Goal 4 include:

  • A: Include community impact in the creation and assessment of university programs and activities.
  • B: Increase student recruitment, retention, and graduation in STEM disciplines.
  • C: Collaborate with external partners to increase Idaho student’s readiness for and enrollment in higher education.
  • D: Leverage knowledge and expertise within the community to develop mutually beneficial partnerships. Evaluate our institutional impact and effectiveness on a regular basis and publicize results.

Goal 4 Objectives and Performance Measures

Goal 5: Transform our operations to serve the contemporary mission of the university

Objectives for Goal 5 include:

  • A: Increase organizational effectiveness by reinventing our business practices, simplifying or eliminating policies, investing in faculty and staff, breaking down silos, and using reliable data to inform decision-making.
  • B: Diversify sources of funding and allocate resources strategically to promote innovation, effectiveness, and responsible risk-taking.

Goal 5 Objectives and Performance Measures

Key External Factors and Mapping

A wide variety of factors affect Boise State University’s ability to implement our strategic plan. Here we present three factors that we regard as impediments to progress and that can be influenced by the state government and its agencies.

  1. Budget cuts to higher education
  2. Administrative oversight
  3. Compliance

Key External Factor and Mapping

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