Revision 3

Date of Submission


Document Type



Doctor of Education




appreciative inquiry, shared leadership, cultural theory, internationalization, change


This Organizational Improvement Plan (OIP) addresses a problem of practice (PoP) at Oceans College (a pseudonym), a multilocation, panprovincial community college. Oceans College currently focuses on recruiting, admitting, and graduating domestic, in-province students. The number of international students, however, is growing. Currently there are no formal processes at the College for international students, unlike at the other postsecondary institutions in the province which actively recruit and enroll international students. The PoP is the lack of readiness at Oceans College to cope with the significant enrollment of international students. Different leadership theories were examined to develop this OIP, and appreciative inquiry (AI) and shared leadership were chosen as frameworks. They both take a positive approach, looking for the best in people. They both fit the matrix organization of Oceans College. Three key tenets used in this OIP are that Oceans College is doing many things well, that understanding the culture of the College is key, and that communication is core to the success of this OIP. The conceptual model I developed is the 4 C’s of Change—context, culture, clarity, and communication. Using this conceptual model, AI, and shared leadership, along with cultural theory, I developed an implementation plan that will allow Oceans College to internationalize the student body over a period of several years. Assessment and evaluation plans were also developed, as was a detailed plan to communicate the change to all stakeholders. The conjunction of theory, concepts, and experience has created an OIP that not only solves the PoP, but also keeps in mind what is already being done well and what would complement the college culture.

Keywords: organizational improvement plan, appreciative inquiry, shared leadership, internationalization, change