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Topic: Student learning and outcomes

Blog Post
December 5, 2017

Examining Research and Teaching Practices of New Zealand Faculty Members

Over the next year, Ithaka S+R will partner with the academic libraries in all eight New Zealand universities to explore and deepen understanding of scholars’ research and teaching practices and needs. Ithaka S+R has been examining the attitudes and behaviors of academics nationally in the US and the UK every three years since 2000 and 2012 respectively, and have now partnered with more than 80 colleges and universities to study these topics in the US, Canada, Australia,…
Past Event
November 28, 2017

Rayane Alamuddin on Future Trends Forum

On Tuesday, November 28, Rayane Alamuddin and  Robert Kelchen, professor of higher education at Seton Hall University and expert in higher education finance, will join Bryan Alexander for a Future Trends Forum on the recent Higher Ed Insights report. The online forum will run from 2:00 pm -3:00 pm. To receive a link to this free event, please register on the Future Trends Forum site. From Future Trends Forum: In May and June of 2017, the Ithaka S+R…
Blog Post
November 20, 2017

Will Devoting Funds to Excelsior Help Students?

Free tuition at all public institutions in a state sounds great. Such a message could encourage students to attend college who would otherwise think it unaffordable, and/or could help students to stay in college.  However, given the particular policies associated with New York’s Excelsior Scholarship, what the future holds for Excelsior Scholarship recipients may not be all positive. Due to these potential negative consequences, New York State’s funds for this program could be better spent expanding existing services…
Blog Post
November 13, 2017

How Research Can Fuel Action to Address Food and Housing Insecurity on American College Campuses

Editor’s note: We asked Sara Goldrick-Rab, a panelist for our Higher Ed Insights Survey, to contribute this blog post based on her open-ended comments on the 2017 survey. It’s been nearly a decade since my team first started studying food and housing insecurity among college students.  To be honest, it wasn’t part of the plan.  We were in the midst of a study on the impacts of a private financial aid program in Wisconsin. We expected to learn…
Blog Post
November 13, 2017

How Policymakers Can Help Institutions Support Financially Insecure Students

Editor’s note: We asked Rachel Dykstra Boon, a panelist for our Higher Ed Insights Survey, to contribute this blog post based on her open-ended comments on the 2017 survey. Ask any teacher (pre-school through graduate school) for an example of a student with food, housing or financial struggles affecting the learning experience and heart-breaking stories will follow. Quantitative and qualitative research over the past several years has pointed to the growth in this demographic of college students as the country…
Blog Post
November 10, 2017

For-Profit Colleges – What Went Wrong?

Mention the phrase “for-profit college” and I can’t help but immediately picture a single parent working two jobs while attending college at night, after the kids are asleep, saddled with debt and no prospects for improving their employment conditions or earnings despite their best efforts. Vivid in my mind are the painful stories of young low-income mothers I interviewed during my graduate studies, whose economic, family, and personal decisions (and opportunities) were often dictated by their (relatively exorbitant) loan repayments…
Blog Post
November 6, 2017

The Tax Status of Colleges: Who Cares?

Across several survey items, the respondents to Ithaka S+R’s Higher Ed Insights Spring 2017 Survey rated Obama administration policies and enforcement actions against for-profit institutions as having a high and positive impact. In my view, policies such as the gainful employment rule and actions such as revoking the accreditation authority of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) for revoking Title IV eligibility for students attending ITT Tech were understandable, on the whole, but had serious shortcomings.
Blog Post
October 31, 2017

In New Survey, Higher Ed Insiders Share Concerns about Impact of Federal Policy Changes under President Trump

In May and June of 2017, we surveyed the Ithaka S+R Higher Ed Insights panel—164 senior leaders and experts at colleges and universities, associations, research groups, and philanthropies—about the state of higher education and the likely impact of recent events and trends. (You can learn more about our Higher Ed Insights Project here.) Today, in “Higher Ed Insights: Results of the Spring 2017 Survey,” Rayane Alamuddin, Daniel Rossman, and I report the findings of that survey. While respondents…
Research Report
October 31, 2017

Higher Ed Insights: Results of the Spring 2017 Survey

In May and June of 2017, we surveyed the Ithaka S+R Higher Ed Insights panel—164 senior leaders and experts at colleges and universities, associations, research groups, and philanthropies—about the state of higher education and the likely impact of recent events and trends. While respondents were generally positive about the state of undergraduate education in the United States, they expressed urgency about the need to improve degree completion rates, the quality of student learning, and affordability for students. Respondents’ reactions to…
Past Event
November 9, 2017

Martin Kurzweil Speaks on Quality Assurance in U.S. Higher Education

At University of Pennsylvania School of Law

On Thursday, November 9, Martin Kurzweil and Wendell Pritchett, Provost and Presidential Professor of Law and Education at the University of Pennsylvania, are speaking on “Quality Assurance in U.S. Higher Education: The Current Landscape and Principles for Reform.” The talk will be held in the Bernard Segal Moot Court Room at Penn Law at noon. From the event website: The U.S. system of higher education continues to be vital to our country, but over the last decade it has come under increasing…
Past Event
October 30, 2017

Catharine Bond Hill Speaks at the CLIMB Initiative Kick-Off Conference

How to get more low-income students into selective colleges

On Monday, October 30, Catharine Bond Hill is speaking on “How to get more low-income students into selective colleges” at the CLIMB Initiative kick-off conference at the University of Texas at Austin. She will be joined on the panel by James Montoya (The College Board), Connie Betterton (The College Board), Susan Dynarski (University of Michigan), Richard Kahlenberg (The Century Foundation), and Logan Powell (Brown University). From the CLIMB website: The Collegiate Leaders in Increasing MoBility, or CLIMB, Initiative is a partnership between…
Blog Post
October 24, 2017

New Graduation Data on Pell Recipients Reveals a Gap in Outcomes

In 2015-16, the federal government disbursed more than $28 billion under the Pell Grant program to 7.6 million students, representing almost 40 percent of undergraduates in the United States. Because eligibility for the grant depends largely on financial need, many researchers use it as a proxy for income, although there are limitations. Despite the size and scope of the program and its importance in socioeconomic and higher education research, outcomes of Pell recipients have not been readily available.
Blog Post
October 19, 2017

The American Talent Initiative’s Fall 2017 Strategic Support Meeting

Convening Member Institutions for Collaborative Practice-Sharing

Earlier this month, more than 100 representatives from American Talent Initiative (ATI) member institutions and partner organizations convened in Washington, D.C. The meeting, run by The Aspen Institute and Ithaka S+R, was designed to give participants the opportunity to learn more about the progress of the initiative and to work collaboratively to advance practice in the key ATI focus areas (outreach, enrollment, financial aid, and retention/graduation). The initiative’s collective goal, adding an additional 50,000 low- and moderate-income students…
Blog Post
October 11, 2017

Leveraging Qualitative Research in the User-Centered Library

Boldly proclaiming that “the Library’s starting point will be from the perspective of users and audiences,” Trinity College Dublin Library’s strategic plan focuses on fostering user-centered approaches to service.  The plan recognizes that an evidence-based approach to understanding patrons’ needs through research is essential to effective service innovation. The library is also committed to promoting a user-centered library culture throughout the library. In support of these strategic goals, I recently delivered a workshop on qualitative research methods for those…
Research Report
September 19, 2017

CIC Consortium for Online Humanities Instruction II

Evaluation Report for First Course Iteration

The CIC Consortium for Online Humanities Instruction began in 2014 with the support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The success of the first Consortium motivated the Mellon Foundation to support a second Consortium that was formed in the summer of 2016 with teams of faculty members and administrators from 21 institutions that were selected through a competitive process.[1] Each institution is represented by a four-member team including a senior academic administrator, two full-time faculty members in the…
Blog Post
September 7, 2017

Community College Library Support for Student Success

Ithaka S+R and Northern Virginia Community College Launch New Research Project

Ithaka S+R regularly and extensively studies the perspectives, practices, and needs of faculty and students at four year colleges and universities to inform future roles for the academic library. Today, we are excited to announce that we will be expanding this work over the next 18 months to partner with seven community colleges in assessing and improving library support of student success within a community college context. We are grateful to the Institute of Museum and Library Services…
Blog Post
August 31, 2017

The Value of Collective Impact for Higher Education Institutions

Over the past decade, collective impact initiatives have emerged in cities and communities all across the country. Collective impact refers to a cross-sector collaboration which brings together a broad spectrum of organizations to solve a specific social problem in a community. Collective impact efforts are typically geographically-bounded, to either a city, county, or region, and are different from traditional collaboration in that they are designed to drive sustainable change in entire systems. In addition to the organizations…
Past Event
September 14, 2017

Walking in Their Shoes: A Student-Centered Approach to Academic Practice

Danielle Cooper at Trinity College Dublin

Danielle Cooper is leading the inaugural user experience seminar at Trinity College Library on Thursday, September 14. This event is open to Trinity College students and staff, who may register through Eventbrite. Seminar description From the time they receive their research assignment to the time they submit their final work, not much is known about how students actually research. Are they researching alone or in groups and how and where does that research take place? How are they engaging…
Blog Post
August 23, 2017

Innovation through Collaboration

Checking in on the CIC’s Consortium for Online Humanities Instruction

In today’s economic climate, where there is an increasing demand from students and families for academic programs that are likely to lead to well-paying jobs, the pressure to innovate is high for many higher education institutions. This pressure is especially high for small independent colleges when part of the innovation discussion involves the restructuring of existing course offerings to increase enrollment and reduce instructional costs – which may run counter to their longstanding mission of offering small classes and providing…
Blog Post
August 17, 2017

Open Educational Resources

Sharing Lessons Learned from K-12 Education

Open educational resources (OERs), which are licensed as freely available for people to use and repurpose, have become a driving force as the education sector looks to reduce costs. OERs are associated with numerous benefits for students, including savings of an average of $128 per course, higher course grades, and greater likelihood of course completion. As a recent Ithaka S+R case study highlighted, the University of Maryland, University College (UMUC) implemented an OER program that saved students…