University of Waterloo

  • Manager, Academic Success

    Requisition ID
    Job Category
    Student Services
    5650 - SSO-Learning Services
    Job Status
    Temporary Appointment (Contract)
    Hiring Range
    $72,724 - $90,905
  • Overview

    Term: 1 year


    The Manager is responsible for providing overall leadership to the Academic Success portfolio in the Student Success Office. This includes providing strong leadership and direction to the Academic Development Specialists, Early Engagement Specialist and Faculty Relations Managers.


    The Manager is highly knowledgeable of best practices in teaching and learning, student retention, educational research/assessment methodologies and is able to apply this knowledge to support the development of strategic academic success initiatives including campus wide strategies (e.g. Early Engagement) and Faculty specific strategies (University 101, Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire). The Manager works closely with the Faculty Relations team to foster strong working relationships with key faculty partners to support the academic development and early engagement portfolios and all portfolios within the Student Success Office. He/she must therefore have an intimate knowledge of all Faculties and a strong understanding of the student experience as it relates to factors that contribute to engagement, student development overall student success and retention. He/she is responsible for collecting, analyzing and managing data and data processes to help inform decision making primarily related to the best use of academic support resources.


    Strategic Direction and Leadership

    • Oversee the day-to-day operations of the Academic Development, Faculty Relations, and Early Engagement Specialist. This includes managing the budget and coordination of all resources, as well as setting clear and reasonable expectations, providing ongoing feedback and establishing a strong foundation for performance for team members
    • Leads staff in the development of research informed practice and initiatives that are in response to the needs and priorities of our Faculty partners and are in line with the strategic priorities of the SSO
    • Leads the Faculty Relations team in the development of a Faculty student success strategy for the SSO
    • Supports the creation and implementation of components of the SSO’s strategic plan for the portfolio’s he/she oversee. Ensuring that the direction of the portfolio’s complement the SSO Strategic plan, the University of Waterloo strategic plan and Faculty-specific strategic plans where possible
    • A member of the SSO leadership team, establishing performance indicators and assessment methods to measure achievement in all areas of responsibility
    • Works closely with the SSO Data Analyst to ensure appropriate information related to retention and factors that contribute to a student’s academic success are available to Faculty partners and used in the planning and evaluation of academic support strategies and projects


    Relationship Building

    • Establishes and builds relationships with key stakeholders to ensure initiatives that support students’ academic success (e.g. Early Engagement, In-Class Supports, Foundation Term etc.) are in line with current academic policies and processes and meet the needs of the campus. Works with relevant stakeholders to make change where needed
    • Leads interdisciplinary teams from across the campus in institution-wide meetings/approaches as appropriate. Including designing these interactions in a way which fosters a sense of collaboration and coordination between stakeholders, mobilizing us towards a common goal of supporting student success
    • Represents SSO at relevant Faculty and department wide meetings as appropriate
    • Develops and maintains excellent working relationships with senior leaders across campus and within faculties (e.g. Associate Deans) – particularly in areas related to a student’s academic success


    Evaluation, Assessment, and Theory

    • Provides leadership and guidance to the Academic Development, Faculty Relations, and Early Engagement teams, as well as the SSO leadership team in understanding data trends and patterns with respect to various issues of strategic importance, such as factors that contribute to and enhance academic success, student engagement, and student development at post-secondary institutions
    • Works closely with the SSO Leadership team to ensure appropriate dissemination and interpretation of literature and data, including tangibly connecting this information to student success and relevant academic support strategies and projects
    • Oversees the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data/information surrounding overall academic success to ensure decisions surrounding the planning, prioritizing, and management of the academic support strategies and projects being developed and implemented are research informed, and align with Waterloo policies and practices
    • Guides the process of timely creation and delivery of information, analyses, reports and projections related to student success and opportunities for academic support strategies and projects. This includes data and information related to course specific attrition rates and predictive indicators


    Course-Coordination, Teaching, and Course Evaluation

    • Hires, trains, and manages sessional instructors and TAs for the courses they oversee
    • Responsible for the budgeting, curriculum development, and reporting for UNIV 101
    • Teaches courses, including UNIV 101/GENE 101, when appropriate
    • Contributes to the development of best practices surrounding instructional methods, classroom design, and classroom management approaches for specialized student populations


    • Masters of Education or equivalent (e.g., Student Services) required
    • Teaching credentials (or comparable post-degree work with extensive experience required)
    • 5 years of experience working in an academic setting and/or student service, including experience in client /stakeholder management, navigating academic policies and processes, and experience working with faculty and administration
    • 5 years of experience managing complex, large scale projects that have multiple stakeholders. This includes demonstrated experience mobilizing people on projects where they were not the subject matter expert, included missing or ever changing information, as well as projects that had to change direction during the process
    • 3 years of experience managing a high functioning team of subject matter experts required
    • Experience supporting the creation and implementation of a strategic plan including a proven track record of leveraging Faculty-specific strategic plans and the University strategic plan to inform the direction
    • Experience applying educational literature and research methods, analysing, interpreting and disseminating data, including the creation of reports that summarize and simplify large amounts of data and information is strongly preferred
    • Experience teaching in a university setting strongly preferred. Experience teaching at the high school or college level would also be considered. Experience as a course-coordinator and/or overseeing other instructors and TAs would be considered an asset
    • Proficient in reading and interpreting statistical information and data relevant to academic support, retention, student engagement and development, as well as using University of Waterloo systems for data collection purposes (Quest, OAT, IAP data cube, etc.) is required
    • Proven influencing and teamwork skills, including a demonstrated ability to mobilize people who don’t report to them, communicate clearly, work collaboratively, build consensus and be sensitive to the needs and interests of various stakeholders
    • The Manager will have strong political savvy and acumen as demonstrated through past experiences. He/she will provide direction and guidance to the Academic Success team and others in the SSO in moving faculty specific strategies forward.
    • Up to date on best practice teaching and learning strategies, the needs of post-secondary students, current literature in student retention, student engagement and student development that may assist in supporting the development of all students


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