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Cindy Ticknor
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Institution: Columbus State University

Location:Columbus, GA

Phone: 706-507-8774

Institution Type: 4-year Public Institution with one doctoral degree. (7,000 undergraduate enrollment)

Program Type: Institution-wide, providing honors core/general education that serves two campuses separated by a 30 minute

Program Enrollment: 275

Present Position: Honors Dean, 2015 

Previous Honors Positions

  • Dean, Honors College (March 2014 – May 2015)
  • Director, Honors Program (Oct 2009 – March 2014)
  • Interim 

    NCHC Member Since: 2009 

    Program Reviews and Consultation:

    NCHC Activities Related to Honors Program/College Assessment & Evaluation:

  • Member, National Collegiate Honors Council (2009 – Present)
  • Awards Committee (2016-Present)
  • Science & Math Committee (2014-Present)

  • Activities in other areas or organizations related to assessment or site visits, workshops, etc.: 

  • Georgia Collegiate Honors Council (2009 – Present) Roles: President (2017), Vice President (2016)
  • Scholarship and Awards Officer, CSU Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society (2012-present)
  • Institutional representative for the Council of Undergraduate Research, Barry Goldwater Scholarships, and Udall Scholarships.
  • CSU Strategic Planning and Quality Enhancement Planning
  • Attended multiple workshops in preparation for SACS accreditation on writing measurable learning outcomes and developing assessment.
  • Doctorate in mathematics education with experience in curriculum alignment, authentic assessment practices, and national/state standards for accreditation.

  • Self-Identified Areas of Special Interest and Experience

  • Developing measurable learning outcomes & assessment plans
  • Strategic planning
  • Advisory board development
  • Campus-wide undergraduate research programs and events
  • Managing multiple campuses
  • First-year experience programming

    Other activities relevant to those seeking honors program/college site visitors: 

  • The Role of an NCHC-Qualified Site Visitor
    The role of an NCHC Honors Program Reviewer is to act as an advocate for honors education with the goal to improve the honors experience for students, regardless of the size or nature of the program they have chosen. Any leader in honors education must act as an academic advisor and administrator while balancing the responsibilities of an academician. It is through the lens of these different roles that the responsibilities and activities of a reviewer becomes evident.

    From the lens of an academic advisor, a program reviewer cannot provide useful advice until she or he listens and learns about the histories, cultures and goals that are unique to each institution. Honors curricula are diverse. Administrators may be novices or sages. Resources can be plentiful or scarce. Reporting structures range from simple to complex. Just like an advisor, a good program reviewer must take the time to understand the landscape, then provide thoughtful feedback that highlights excellence and praises distinctive program features, identifies problematic areas amid a variety of potential solutions, and allows for reflection on short- and long term-goals.


    From the lens of an administrator, a program reviewer must look comprehensively at honors education to help advance it. The rigor of curriculum, qualifications and development of faculty, financial viability, program visibility, recruitment practices, and student learning outcomes all must be aligned with the strategic mission and goals of the honors program and its institution. In many ways, a review is similar to a departmental comprehensive program review, but with one critical difference. The primary activity in honors is to assess, not evaluate. In other words, a reviewer should provide formative assessment that measures the effectiveness of program, without purposefully judging its quality or requiring accountability for improvements. The assessment feedback should provide opportunities to identify effective practices, characterize barriers to advancement, and suggest alternative strategies at comparable institutions.

    Finally, from the lens of an academician, a program review is an opportunity for a constructive exchange between peers that will advance the field of honors education. Just as all scholars appreciate the value of peer review process, honors leaders should regard a program review as an opportunity to showcase exemplary work and to discover creative approaches to enhancing their programs. This exchange of information has the potential to have a broader impact to the honors community by improving the host institution while developing a network of professionals with a common goal: advancing honors education.
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