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Research Report
May 9, 2024

Removing the Institutional Debt Hurdle

Findings from an Evaluation of the Ohio College Comeback Compact

This report provides findings from the evaluation of the pilot year of the Ohio College Comeback Compact, an institutional debt cancellation program being implemented at eight public institutions in northeast Ohio. Administrative holds preventing re-enrollment leave students unable to realize the benefits of a postsecondary credential. Fortunately, a number of initiatives and policies, including the Ohio College Comeback Compact, have sought to alleviate this barrier for students.
Research Report
May 9, 2024

Second Chances

A Qualitative Assessment of the Ohio College Comeback Compact

While the rise of institution-specific debt forgiveness programs and state-level policies limiting transcript withholding is encouraging, a regional or national approach could benefit returning students on a wider scale. In response, Ithaka S+R developed a regional solution, the Ohio College Comeback Compact, which launched in August 2022, to address the problems posed by institutional debts and provide stopped-out students with an opportunity to complete their credential and have their debt forgiven.
Research Report
April 3, 2024

Between Two Systems

Navigating Censorship and Self-Censorship in Higher Education in Prisons

Building on our previous research on the ways that media review directives and censorship policies may limit or protect student access to intellectual and education material, as well as on the technology students on the inside can access for educational purposes, this report explores how educators in higher education in prison programs navigate censorship and self-censorship and how the relationship between educational programs and departments of corrections may have an impact on the educational experience and learning outcomes of students.
Research Report
March 28, 2024

Censorship and Academic Freedom in the Public University Library

Research libraries are expected to provide and preserve collections in support of their institutions’ research and teaching priorities and to support long-term access to cultural, historical, and scientific works. In today’s polarized political environment, both libraries and universities have been at the heart of controversy. In this project, we examine some of the impacts of this polarization at public research university libraries.
Research Report
March 14, 2024

The Research Data Services Landscape at US and Canadian Higher Education Institutions

While many universities have made substantial investments in research data services and are likely to continue to make further investments, obstacles such as decentralization and inefficiency, insufficient staffing, lack of technical expertise, and ambiguity about the needs of researchers continue to limit the impact of these investments. In light of these persistent challenges, Ithaka S+R revisited our 2020 inventory of data services and expanded our scope to include Canadian universities. Our findings presented here are based on a comprehensive review…
Research Report
January 29, 2024

The Second Digital Transformation of Scholarly Publishing

Strategic Context and Shared Infrastructure

The scholarly publishing sector is undergoing its second digital transformation. The first saw a massive shift from paper to digital, but otherwise publishing retained many of the characteristics of the print era. In this current second digital transformation, many of the structures, workflows, incentives, and outputs that characterized the print era are being revamped in favor of new approaches that bring tremendous opportunities, and also non-trivial risks, to scholarly communication. It is our objective with this paper to examine the…
Research Report
November 9, 2023

Institutional Supports for Students with Stranded Credits

Survey Results from the Ohio College Comeback Compact

As of 2023, 43.6 million borrowers owe more than $1.7 trillion in student loan debt. The burden of debt negatively impacts borrowers' ability to provide for their families, purchase a car, or buy a home. However, there is another, often overlooked, institutional debt that students may owe their former institutions after stopping out. It is estimated that 6.6 million students owe $15 billion in unpaid balances to their institutions.
Research Report
September 19, 2023

Print Revenue and Open Access Monographs

A University Press Study

What happens to print sales when an OA edition of a scholarly monograph is also available on publication? This is the central focus of this report, which is authored by members and representatives from the Association of University Presses and Ithaka S+R. Beyond exploring the question of the role of print sales in OA monograph publishing, we will also touch briefly on how print sales fit into the overall financial equation of a sustainable OA book model.
Research Report
September 7, 2023

Technology in Higher Education in Prison Programs

A Report on Survey Findings

In an effort to make visible the national landscape of access to educational technology in prison education programs, Ithaka S+R launched a national survey in the fall of 2022. The survey asked respondents about student access to technology in their higher education in prison program, collecting demographic information before focusing on four thematic areas: technological devices, learning management systems and software, network connection and internet access, and future technology plans.
Research Report
September 7, 2023

Technology in Higher Education in Prison Programs: Key Findings and Figures

This report includes the key findings from the technology in higher education in prisons survey that Ithaka S+R fielded in 2022. The survey focused on four thematic areas: technological devices, learning management systems and software, network connectivity or internet access, and future information technology plans.
Research Report
August 15, 2023

Of Meetings and Members

The Interconnected Future of Conferences and Scholarly Societies

As the pandemic recedes into memory, societies find themselves at a crossroads. For several years, the decision to hold hybrid or virtual meetings was dictated by outside forces: it has now become a question of societies’ priorities, mission, and values. It is too early to tell whether the virtual meetings of 2020-22 were anomalies, but a casual observer might reasonably describe the “new normal” as nearly identical to the old one. A closer view suggests a more nuanced picture.
Research Report
May 16, 2023

MAAPS Advising Experiment

Evaluation Findings after Six Years

MAAPS is a large-scale randomized-controlled trial designed to validate the effectiveness of intensive, proactive, technology-enhanced advisement in increasing achievement, persistence, and completion of historically underserved students. This final report on the project presents impact findings for the intent-to-treat effect of MAAPS advisement on participating students’ outcomes for the final analytic sample of 10,037 students and at each participating institution after six academic years.
Research Report
April 24, 2023

Common Scholarly Communication Infrastructure Landscape Review

Scholarly communication is the process through which research products and outputs (such as articles, audiovisual materials, data, code, and research methods) are created, assessed, improved, shared, disseminated, and preserved in a variety of modes including through formal and informal publications, conferences, and other academic networking methods. Shared infrastructure is a key enabler for delivering the services that authors and readers need. It is composed of standards, platforms, technologies, policies, and the communities that enable and support them.
Research Report
April 20, 2023

Security and Censorship

A Comparative Analysis of State Department of Corrections Media Review Policies

Despite resurgent public interest in censorship issues, research and reporting on prison censorship policies remain largely localized, with few wide-scale studies of the issue. The highly decentralized nature of the carceral system in the United States complicate such an undertaking. In an effort to make available policy information more accessible and to develop a sense of how censorship policies might impact higher education in prisons, Ithaka S+R examined media review directives across all 50 states and Washington DC.
Research Report
March 30, 2023

US Library Survey 2022

Navigating the New Normal

Since 2010, Ithaka S+R has conducted the Library Survey on a triennial basis with the overarching goal of tracking the perspectives, priorities, and leadership strategies of library deans and directors at four-year academic institutions. This study is designed to provide library and other higher education leadership with a high-level overview of the topics that are at the forefront of library leaders as they conceptualize the role, strategic alignment, and value proposition of academic libraries on campuses.
Research Report
March 9, 2023

The Texas Student Success Program Inventory

How Public Undergraduate Institutions Are Supporting Student Success Across the State of Texas

Executive Summary The Texas Student Success Program Inventory (SSPI), available at https://www.highered.texas.gov/sspi, is an online database of information related to student success programs at public colleges and universities, commissioned by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB). Consistent with nearly every other state, prior to the creation of the SSPI, there was no organized source of information about student success programming in Texas. By creating a user-friendly tool for publicly sharing information, the SSPI is…
Research Report
January 31, 2023

A*CENSUS II: Archives Administrators Survey

Seven hundred and forty-six archives administrators representing academic institutions, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, for-profit organizations, and community archives across the United States shared information about their organizations and their perspectives on key issues in the field by completing the A*CENSUS II Archives Administrators Survey. This report shares findings on archives’ budget and collection sizes, staff recruitment and retention, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility practices.
Research Report
January 26, 2023

Teaching with Streaming Video

Understanding Instructional Practices, Challenges, and Support Needs

Ithaka S+R launched a project in collaboration with a cohort of libraries to identify challenges and develop strategies for streaming media acquisitions. We published the findings from the first part of this project—a comprehensive national survey that tracked the streaming media strategies libraries are adopting and the challenges they are facing—in June, 2022. This second report draws on a qualitative study of faculty practices and support needs with streaming video. Understanding these practices can guide libraries to make strategic acquisitions…
Research Report
January 17, 2023

Strengthening Mississippi’s Economic Future Through Postsecondary Investment

As Mississippi prepares to support the statewide postsecondary attainment goal, understanding the returns to higher education is crucial to determining where to invest resources. Ithaka S+R has partnered with the Woodward Hines Education Foundation to provide Mississippi policymakers, advocates, and legislators with information they need to make strategic investments in postsecondary education that can increase attainment of high-value postsecondary credentials, especially amongst lower-income Mississippians, people of color, and residents in rural communities.
Research Report
November 16, 2022

The BTA 2022 Art Museum Trustee Survey

The Characteristics, Roles, and Experiences of Black Trustees

The Black Trustee Alliance for Art Museums (BTA) has partnered with Ithaka S+R to examine the experiences and demographics of art museum trustees from museums in the US, Canada, and Mexico. Through a shared interest in representation in the arts, BTA and Ithaka S+R fielded the Art Museum Trustee Survey to board members in the fall of 2021. The report investigates the characteristics, roles, and experiences of Black trustees in North American art museums.