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What Matters to Student Success 2009

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What Matters to Student Success George D. Kuh University of British Columbia May 7, 2009 Javier Sarah Nicole We all want the same thing--an undergraduate experience that results in high levels of learning and personal development for all students.    Overview  What students and the world need now  Why engagement matters  Lessons from high- performing institutions  Implications Ponder This To what extent do UBC students engage in productive learning activities, inside and outside the classroom? How do we get students to take greater advantage of UBC’s resources for learning? What can UBC do differently -- or better -- to enhance student learning and success? Student Success in University Academic achievement, engagement in educationally purposeful activities, satisfaction, acquisition of desired knowledge, skills and competencies, persistence, attainment of educational objectives, and post- university performance Ponder This To what extent do UBC students engage in productive learning activities, inside and outside the classroom? How do we get students to take greater advantage of UBC’s resources for learning? What can UBC do differently -- or better -- to enhance student learning and success? For what shall UBC be known?  UBC Commitments  he University provides a rich learning experience that develops communication skills, critical thinking and creativity, facilitates social engagement and service, and helps individuals be global citizens.  he University supports innovative and transformative teaching that actively engages students in building their own learning experience. UBC Commitments  he University promotes connections among faculties and units to create, develop, and share vital initiatives that advance the interests of UBC and its many communities.  he University engages in reflection and action to build cross-cultural aptitudes, create a strong sense of inclusion, and enrich our intellectual and social life. Association of American Colleges and Universities Narrow Learning is Not Enough: The Essential Learning Outcomes  Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical & Natural World  Intellectual and Practical Skills  Personal and Social Responsibility  “Deep” Integrative Learning    Deep, Integrative Learning  Attend to the underlying meaning of information as well as content  Integrate and synthesize different ideas, sources of information  Discern patterns in evidence or phenomena  Apply knowledge in different situations  View issues from multiple perspectives Most Important Skills According to Employers and Recent Graduates Teamwork skills Critical thinking/ reasoning Oral/written communication Ability to assemble/ organize information Innovative/thinking creatively Able to work with numbers/statistics Foreign language proficiency 3% 9% 20% 21% 30% 33% 44% Recent Grads* 38% 37% 37% 10% 21%   4%    6% * Skills/abilities recent graduates think are the two most important to employers Pre-university Characteristics Associated with Student Success Academic preparation Ability and college-level skills Family education and support Financial wherewithal  Early University Indicators of Persistence and Success  Goal realization  Psycho-social fit  Credit hours completed  Academic and social support  Involvement in the “right” kinds     of activities What Really Matters in University: Student Engagement Because individual effort and involvement are the critical determinants of impact, institutions should focus on the ways they can shape their academic, interpersonal, and extracurricular offerings to encourage student engagement. Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005, p. 602 Student Engagement Trifecta What students do -- time and energy devoted to educationally purposeful activities What institutions do -- using effective educational practices to induce students to do the right things Educationally effective institutions channel student energy toward the right activities Good Practices in Undergraduate Education (Chickering & Gamson, 1987; Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005)  Student-faculty contact  Active learning  Prompt feedback  Time on task  High expectations  Respect for diverse learning styles  Cooperation among students National Survey of Student Engagement (pronounced “nessie”) Community College Survey of Student Engagement (pronounced “cessie”) Student surveys that assess the extent to which students engage in educational practices associated with high levels of learning and development NSSE Project Scope Since 2000: 2,000,000+ students from 1,334 different schools 80+% of 4-yr U.S. undergraduate FTE 50 states, Puerto Rico 59 Canadian IHEs 100+ consortia NSSE Questionnaire Student Behaviors Institutional Actions & Requirements Reactions to College Student Background Information Student Learning & Development Effective Educational Practices Level of Academic Challenge Active & Collaborative Learning Enriching Educational Experiences Supportive Campus Environment Student- Faculty Interaction   Key findings Grades, persistence, student satisfaction, and engagement go hand in hand UBC Comparison Groups G-13 Dalhousie University University of Alberta University of Calgary Selected US Peers University of Texas at Austin University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign University of Minnesota- Twin Cities University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Virginia University of Wisconsin- Madison Carnegie Canadian Peers Concordia University McGill University McMaster University University of Alberta University of Calgary University of Toronto York University Academic Challenge What percent of UBC seniors study 10 or fewer hours per week? (a) 7% (b) 12% (c) 20% (d) 26% (e) 35% Student Engagement Quiz e. 35%  (34% 1st years) What percent of UBC seniors frequently (often or very often) come to class unprepared? (a) 9% (b) 17% (c) 29% (d) 40% (e) none of the above Student Engagement Quiz d. 40%  (37% 1st years) Come to class without completing readings or assignments Seniors Active and Collaborative Learning What percent of UBC 1st years never did a service learning project? (a) 12% (b) 29% (c) 42% (d) 59% (e) 71% Student Engagement Quiz e. 71%  (70% seniors) Participated in a community-based project (e.g. service learning) as part of a regular course First-Year Students Asked questions in class or contributed to class discussions First-Year Students Student-Faculty Interaction What percent of UBC first years never discussed ideas from readings or classes with a faculty member outside of class? (a) 14% (b) 28% (c) 39% (d) 47% (e) none of the above Student Engagement Quiz d. 47%  (39% seniors) Received prompt feedback from faculty on your academic performance First-Year Students Enriching Educational Experiences Supportive Campus Environment Student engagement varies more within than between institutions.  Academic Challenge: Fourth-Years at Doc-Extensive Schools 0 20 40 60 80 100 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Doc-Extensive Institutions Percentile 10 Percentile 50 Percentile 90 Student-Faculty Interaction: First-Year Students at Liberal Arts Institutions 0 20 40 60 80 100 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Liberal Arts Institutions Percentile 10 Percentile 50 Percentile 90 Worth Pondering How do we reach our least engaged students? It’s more complicated than this…  Many of the effects of college are “conditional”  Some are compensatory  NSSE: Who’s more engaged?  Women  Full-time students  Students who live on campus  Students with diversity experiences  Students who start and stay at the same school    What does an educationally effective university look like?  Project DEEP To discover, document, and describe what high performing institutions do to achieve their notable level of effectiveness. DEEP Schools* Doctoral Extensives   University of Kansas   University of Michigan Doctoral Intensives George Mason University Miami University (Ohio) University of Texas El Paso Master’s Granting   Fayetteville State University   Gonzaga University   Longwood University  Liberal Arts    California State, Monterey Bay    Macalester College    Sweet Briar College    The Evergreen State College    Sewanee: University of the South    Ursinus College    Wabash College    Wheaton College (MA)    Wofford College Baccalaureate General    Alverno College    University of Maine at Farmington    Winston-Salem State University * Hi gher - t han pr edi ct ed NSSE scor es and gr aduat i on r at es Research Approach Case study method Team of 24 researchers review institutional documents and conduct multiple-day site visits Observe individuals, classes, group meetings, activities, events •  2,700+ people, 60 classes, 30 events Discover and describe effective practices and programs, campus culture Worth Noting Many roads to an engaging institution  No one best model  Different combinations of complementary, interactive, synergistic conditions  Anything worth doing is worth doing well at scale Six Shared Conditions  “Living” Mission and “Lived” Educational Philosophy  Unshakeable Focus on Student Learning  Environments Adapted for Educational Enrichment  Clearly Marked Pathways to Student Success  Improvement-Oriented Ethos  Shared Responsibility for Educational Quality Ponder This 1. Which of these areas needs attention right now at UBC?? 2. What might you or others do about it? Creating Conditions That Matter to Student Success                            DEEP Lessons We can’t leave serendipity to chance 1. Lay out the path to student success a. Intentionality matters b. Engagement early is critical c. Front load resources to smooth transitions d. Teach newcomers about academic culture & expectations e. Focus on underengaged students f. If something works, maybe require it? Lessons from National Center for Academic Transformation  If doing something is important, require it (first-year students don’t do ‘optional’)  Assign course points to the activity  Monitor and intervene when necessary     http://www.thencat.org/Newsletters/Apr06.htm#1 Targets of Opportunity  Require advising and orientation  Use valid placement tests  Reduce D/W/F rates  Deploy early warning systems  Communicate with at-risk student family members Fayetteville State Faculty members “teach the students they have, not those they wish they had” Center for Teaching and Learning sponsors development activities on diverse learning needs Cal State Monterey Bay “Assets” philosophy acknowledges students’ prior knowledge “Meet students where they are” Mentoring U of Michigan Mentorship Program matches groups of four first-year students with an older student and a faculty or staff member who share similar academic interests. The goal is to provide students with mentoring relationships, networking opportunities, yearlong guidance and support, and in general to help ease the transition to college. It Takes a Whole Campus to Educate a Student Something Else That Really Matters in University   The greatest impact appears to stem from students’  total level of campus engagement, particularly when academic, interpersonal, and extracurricular involvements are mutually reinforcing… Pascar el l a & Ter enzi ni ,  2005, p.  647 2. Recruit, socialize and reward competent people a. Recruit faculty and staff committed to student learning b. Emphasize a relentless focus on student success in faculty and staff orientation c. Reward and support competent staff to insure high quality student support services “Difference Makers” Student success is the product of thousands of small gestures extended on a daily basis by caring, supportive educators sprinkled throughout the institution who enact a talent development philosophy.             “Miss Rita” 3. Promote and reward collaboration a. Tighten the philosophical and operational linkages between academic and student affairs b. Potential collaborations: – Peer tutoring and mentoring – First year seminars – Learning communities 4. Put money where it will make a       difference to student success “…in professional baseball it still matters less how much you have than how well you spend it” 4. Put money where it will make a difference to student success a. Align resources and reward system with institutional mission, values, and priorities b. Sunset redundant and ineffective programs c. Invest in “high-impact” activities that contribute to student success www.aacu.org High Impact Activities  First-Year Seminars and Experiences  Common Intellectual Experiences  Learning Communities  Writing-Intensive Courses  Collaborative Assignments and Projects  “Science as Science Is Done”;     Undergraduate Research  Diversity/Global Learning  Service Learning, Community-Based Learning  Internships  Capstone Courses and Projects  Integrating ideas or information from various sources  Included diverse perspectives in class discussions/writing  Put together ideas from different courses  Discussed ideas with faculty members outside of class  Discussed ideas with others outside of class  Analyzing the basic elements of an idea, experience, or theory Essent i al  Lear ni ng Out come: NSSE Deep/ I nt egr at i ve Lear ni ng  Synthesizing & organizing ideas, info., or experiences Making judgments about the value of information  Applying theories to practical problems or in new situations  Examined the strengths and weaknesses of your own views  Tried to better understand someone else's views  Learned something that changed how you understand an issue Ef f ect s of  Par t i c i pat i ng i n Hi gh- I mpact  Act i v i t i es on Deep/ I nt egr at i ve Lear ni ng and Gai ns  Deep Learning Gains General Gains Personal Gains Practical  First Year Learning Communities +++ ++ ++ ++ Service Learning +++ ++ +++ ++  Fourth Year Study Abroad ++ + ++ Student-Faculty Research +++ ++ ++ ++ Internship ++ ++ ++ ++ Service Learning +++ ++ +++ ++ Culminating Experience ++ ++ ++ ++ + p < .001, ++ p < .001 & Unstd B > .10, +++ p < .001 & Unstd B > .30  Ef f ect s of  Par t i c i pat i ng i n Hi gh- I mpact  Act i v i t i es on St udent  Engagement  Level of Academic Challenge Active and Collab. Learning Student- Faculty Interaction Supportive Campus Env.  First Year Learning Communities ++ +++ +++ ++ Service Learning ++ +++ +++ ++  Fourth Year Study Abroad ++ ++ ++ + Student-Faculty Research +++ +++ +++ ++ Internship ++ +++ +++ ++ Service Learning ++ +++ +++ ++ Culminating Experience ++ ++ +++ ++ + p < .001, ++ p < .001 & Unstd B > .10, +++ p < .001 & Unstd B > .30  High Impact Activities Increase Odds Students Will:  Invest time and effort  Interact with faculty and peers about substantive matters  Experience diversity  Get more frequent feedback  Reflect & integrate learning  Discover relevance of learning through real-world applications Community service or volunteer work First-Year Students Community service or volunteer work Seniors Learning community or some other formal program First-Year Students Research project with a faculty member outside of course requirements Seniors Study abroad Seniors Practicum, internship, field experience, co-op experience, or clinical assignment Seniors Culminating senior experience (capstone course, senior project/thesis, comp exam, etc.) Seniors High-Impact Practices and the Disparities Within… 1st Years: Service Learning and LCs  Parity among racial/ethnic groups  Fewer 1st gen students  Fewer part-time students  Fewer transfer students  Fewer older students High-Impact Practices and the Disparities Within… 4th Years in All HIPs  Fewer 1st gen students  Fewer students of color  Fewer transfer students  Fewer part-time students  Fewer older students   Assessing Student Engagement in   High-Impact Practices To what extent does your institution provide these experiences? [√ = have on campus; √ = required; estimate the % of various student populations in these activities] NSSE and FSSE Data 4th Years’ Participation in High Impact Activities 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% Somewhat  I mpor t ant I mpor t ant Ver y I mpor t ant Aver age I mpor t ance Facul t y Pl aced on t he Exper i ence Pe r c e n ta ge  o f Se n io r s  Wh o  Ha d th e  Ex pe r ie n c e Cul mi nat i ng Exper i ence Resear ch wi t h a Facul t y  Member Ser v i ce Lear ni ng 5. Focus on culture sooner than later Ultimately, it’s all about the culture… a. Expand the number of cultural practitioners on campus b. Identify and address cultural properties that impede success c. Instill an ethic of positive restlessness  Positive Restlessness Confident, responsive, but never quite satisfied… “We know who we are and what we aspire to.” Self-correcting orientation Continually question, “are we performing as well as we can?” 6.  Put someone in charge When everyone is responsible for something, no one is accountable for it… a. Senior leadership is key b. Some individual or group (high profile ‘think force’) must coordinate, monitor and report the status of initiatives c. Those ‘in charge’ not solely responsible for bringing about change 7. Stay the course   The good-to-great-transformations never happened in one fell swoop. There was no single defining action, no grand program, no one killer innovation, no solitary lucky break, no miracle moment.  Sustainable transformations follow a predictable pattern of buildup and breakthrough…    (Collins, 2001, p. 186) 7. Stay the course  Academic leadership  Intentionality  Scale up effective practices  If it works, consider requiring it  Beware the implementation dip Javier Sarah Nicole Classroom Engaging Pedagogies 1. One minute papers (variations) 2. Case studies 3. Debates 4. Small group problem sets… 5. Others If We Could Do Four Things… 3. Make it possible for every student to do at least one “high-impact” experience in the first year and another later linked to the major If We Could Do Four Things… 4.  Ensure programs are of high quality. What is your evidence for effectiveness? Last Word We must embrace the lineage of our students. Campus cultures do not change easily or willingly. To foster more student success we must use promising policies and practices more consistently throughout the institution. Do we have the will to do so? t o consi der  & di scussTo what  ext ent  ar e st udent s’  academi c per f or mance and out - of - cl ass l i ves consi st ent  wi t h t he i nst i t ut i on’ s expect at i ons? I n what  ways do st udent s’  out - of - cl ass l i ves f aci l i t at e and i nhi bi t  t hei r  l ear ni ng and success? What ’ s wor ki ng wel l  t o f ost er  st udent engagement  at  UBC? What  needs t o i mpr ove? How coul d you i nf l uence t hi s change? What  st r uct ur es and pr ocesses ar e i n pl ace t o i dent i f y st udent s who ar e l ess engaged i n educat i onal l y- pur posef ul  act i vi t i es t han t hey shoul d be t o succeed? Photo by: stephenccwu. Used under Creative Commons license. Questions & Discussion

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