Leo Groarke and others on IPRM/program prioritization

January 22, 2014

Leo Groarke and others on IPRM/program prioritization

Hello all —

In partial response to notes of concern that your Association has been receiving from our Members about the IPRM in general and in recognition of the fact many of our programs are either actively filling out IPRM templates or anticipating doing so soon in the future, WLUFA would like to keep Members updated on similar experiences elsewhere.

The IPRM is simply the Laurier variant of a larger process called ‘program prioritization’ developed by U.S.-based consultant Robert Dickeson and implemented at a variety of universities in that country. This American process is now being exported to Canada where a small number of universities — including USaskachewan, Brock, York, Guelph and Laurier — are implementing this method.

I would therefore like to direct members to a number of recent pieces of writing which consider the soundness of the Dickeson approach to the prioritization of academic programs:

1. “Doing the PPP: A Skeptical Perspective” by Leo Groarke, VP-A UWindsor (a former WLU professor and administrator) can be accessed at:


2. “The Emperor Isn’t Wearing Any Clothes,” by Eric Howe, Department of Economics, University of Saskatchewan — offers a predictive methodological critique of the process their before rankings were performed. (attached –Howe — Usask — The Emperor Isnt Wearing Any Clothes – final)

3. “TransformUS: Even Worse than Predicted,” by Eric Howe — a reflection on the Saskachewan method after the rankings (attached – Howe — Usask — TransformUS Even Worse Than Predicted, edite)

4. “Robert Dickeson: Right for Ontario?” by Craig Heron, Department of History, York University — a recent review of Dickeson’s book prepared for OCUFA. (attached – Dickeson Right for Ontario – Craig Heron)


Bill Salatka and Rob Kristofferson

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