What is a UQIP?

A UQIP is a University Quality Improvement Project. A UQIP:

  • is focused on finding ways to work "faster, smarter, or simpler" for a specific process or problem.
  • employs a short term work group (team) who is vigorously engaged in continuous improvement activity.
  • is a continuous improvement activity that will be recognized and shared with the University community. All UQIP Team Agreement and Charter submitted to Joyce Paxton will be posted to a public folder. All UQIP's will be included in the master list of university continuous improvement projects and eligible for the Measurable Difference Award.

Why should I participate, lead or sponsor a UQIP?

UQIP's provide opportunities for members of the university community to work together to achieve academic and administrative excellence by:

  • Improving the daily work of all units (think big, start small, move fast)
  • Identifying opportunities to work "faster, smarter, or simpler" and taking action to correct problems (quick wins first)
  • Eliminating problems and improving processes at their source (fix the real issue not the symptom)
  • Gathering and sharing best practices and lessons learned (stop reinventing the wheel)
  • Providing a picture of all the continuous improvement active teams and projects throughout the university.
  • Providing data to use in the AQIP Systems Portfolio.

Where can I go for assistance or to ask questions?

The AQIP Steering Committee can help get your UQIP team started. They will:

  • Assist with developing your project charter
  • Provide coaching on various continuous improvement tools such as: process mapping, planning, implementation, and measuring results.
  • Provide information and answer questions. The UQIP contact is Joyce Paxton, AQIP Coordinator, 651-793-1428.

What do I need to do to get a UQIP Team started?

A UQIP Team will need a:

  • UQIP Charter (.pdf)
  • Process/project with clear boundaries
  • Sponsor support (if appropriate)
  • Project leader
  • Project team members

Who are the members of the AQIP Steering Committee?

Here is a list of current members.

When is a sponsor needed?

It is helpful to have a Sponsor when a project:

  • Involves more than one department or program
  • Requires a "global" perspective
  • May involve governance
  • Requires resources

What if my UQIP idea involves an area outside my own?

You may be unaware of department or division initiatives or projects outside your area. The best option for sharing your project ideas is to:

  • Ask your direct supervisor, department chair or dean to move your recommendation forward
  • Make your recommendation to the supervisor or VP most closely related to the area, as appropriate

Can I put together a team for my department?
Can I put together a team for a large cross function project?
Can I do an individual project?

Yes, to all the above. Depending on the scope and size of the project, you may want to consider the sample models listed below. UQIP teams or an individual may work with the DO IT model for projects within a position, a department, unit, or program; or with the PDCA model for project areas affecting multiple departments, units, programs or governance. Each project will have unique characteristics and parameters. The models provide a place to start. Teams may use the DO IT or PDCA models in combine or use other methods which may better address the project parameters.


Size/Scope Smaller projects within a department, program or position.

Stakeholders Limited impact & on employees outside a specific department or program


Open possibilities
Best used when the problem is identified and a solution is uncomplicated or known. Implement a fix and establish a metric to monitor progress.

Plan/Do/Check/Act - PDCA

Size/Scope Broad based involving multiple departments/programs/colleges/governance

Stakeholders Significant impact on employees in multiple areas


Plan. Recognize an opportunity and plan a change.
Do. Carry out a small-scale study/pilot.
Check/Study. Analyze the results.
Act. Take action. Implementation. Use what you learned to plan new improvements and implement. Begin the cycle again.