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tag: Basic needs

Blog Post
August 2, 2021

Leading Community College Libraries During the Pandemic

Library Directors Share Their Experiences 

Community colleges and their students have faced enormous challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. Two-year colleges serve especially diverse student populations, including a high percentage of students of color, first-generation students, working students, and student parents, many of whom have been disproportionately impacted by the social, economic, and public health effects of the pandemic. Community colleges have made considerable efforts to meet student needs, despite having fewer resources than most four-year colleges and universities…
Blog Post
April 28, 2021

What Will it Take to Move the Needle on Student Basic Needs?

Last year, we released a landscape review delving into how different metrics of student success are currently prioritized, defined, quantified, and used within the community college sector—examining how traditional metrics of success, like those aligning with typical college objectives like graduation, retention, enrollment, and course completion, are more often prioritized and required for funding, accountability, and accreditation purposes. Subsequent interviews with institutional research and effectiveness officers provided even…
Research Report
April 28, 2021

Moving the Needle on College Student Basic Needs

National Community College Provost Perspectives

For many years, higher education data collection and funding efforts have focused on student success metrics like enrollment, graduation, retention, and course completion rates. At the same time, higher education leaders have become increasingly aware—in part because of the COVID-19 pandemic—of the vast array of challenges that college students face outside of the classroom that prevent them from fully succeeding. To shed light on the challenges and opportunities associated with the collection and prioritization of a broader set of student…
Past Event
April 28, 2021

Christine Wolff-Eisenberg and Melissa Blankstein at NISOD 2021

Christine Wolff-Eisenberg and Melissa Blankstein will unveil brand new national survey findings of community college provosts on efforts to measure and address student basic needs. Join them to discuss the current landscape of metrics for determining student success and opportunities for including new holistic student metrics going forward. For more information, please visit this site. …
Blog Post
October 27, 2020

Student Success, Basic Needs, and the COVID-19 Pandemic

Institutional Research Perspectives on Holistic Student Success Metrics

This year has undoubtedly been marked with unprecedented challenges for higher education, as we and others have documented through ever-building evidence from students, faculty, and administrators alike. As colleges and universities work to maintain enrollment, retention, and student learning outcomes, they are grappling with how to better understand and address the challenges their students are facing. The growing urgency to support students holistically—that…
Blog Post
September 30, 2020

Holistically Measuring Student Success

Higher education institutions often use quantitative, outcome-based metrics to define student success. These measurements, which are reported to and used by government, regulatory, and accrediting agencies, are influential for decision-making, benchmarking, ranking, and most importantly, funding. However, these traditional outcome metrics provide a limited view of the goals, challenges, and experiences of college students, especially those who attend community colleges. Employing additional, holistic metrics—such as those that focus on basic needs, feelings…
Research Report
September 30, 2020

Measuring the Whole Student

Landscape Review of Traditional and Holistic Approaches to Community College Student Success

As colleges and universities work to enhance student success, they frequently use traditional outcome-based metrics—such as graduation rates, year-to-year retention, and post-graduation employment—to define that “success.” These measurements, which throughout this report we refer to as traditional metrics, are often prioritized across higher education given their impact on and consequences toward institutional decision-making, benchmarking, and most importantly, funding. While these quantitative metrics can provide a useful—albeit limited—view into student experiences inside and outside of the classroom, they often focus on…
Blog Post
September 23, 2020

A Letter to College Administrators

Considerations for Virtual Learning

Kimmy Cacciato graduated from The College of New Jersey with a major in Deaf/Hard of Hearing Education – Mathematics Teaching. This fall, she returned to TCNJ to pursue an MAT in Deaf/Hard of Hearing Education. She is currently serving as a student advisor to Ithaka S+R’s Holistic Metrics of Student Success project. Dear College Administrators, As a senior I thought I had it all figured out. But then COVID-19 hit, and the game changed. As we all experienced, there…
Blog Post
September 3, 2020

What Your Students Want to Hear

Effective Communications in the Time of COVID-19

Kimmy Cacciato is currently serving as a student advisor to the Ithaka S+R Holistic Metrics of Student Success project. She graduated from The College of New Jersey with a major in Deaf/Hard of Hearing Education – Mathematics Teaching. This fall, she is returning to TCNJ to pursue an MAT in Deaf/Hard of Hearing Education.  During this time of uncertainty, effectively communicating with students is more important than ever. Campus administrators and…
Blog Post
November 21, 2019

Increasing Awareness of Basic Needs

Holistic Measures of Student Success for Community College Leaders

Higher education institutions typically use quantitative metrics like year-to-year retention rates, graduation rates, and post-secondary outcomes to measure student success. Most, if not all, institutions are required to report these data to government, regulatory, and accreditation agencies, and use them for benchmarking and measuring progress towards goals. To date, however, the student perspective of what success means — and what barriers stand in the way of achieving it — has often been omitted from these practices. Our research with seven…
Blog Post
October 29, 2019

Do Emergency Micro-Grants Help Financially-Disadvantaged Students Succeed?

Over the last 10 years, tuition and fees at degree-granting institutions have risen by 27 percent, making it more difficult for students, especially those already struggling to cover basic needs like housing and food, to afford to remain in college in the face of unexpected financial trouble. In many cases, unpaid term balances prevent students from continuing in the current term or enrolling in the following one, and as a result, students dropout or are automatically dropped. Unpaid balances…
Blog Post
October 16, 2019

Why we are adding a basic needs module to the Ithaka S+R local surveys

Students often struggle with balancing their personal, professional, and academic responsibilities, including affording their most basic needs in conjunction with course expenses. Recognizing this reality, we will be offering a basic needs module for the Ithaka S+R local student surveys starting in spring 2020. In late 2018, colleagues and I worked in partnership with a cohort of community colleges to survey their students about their goals and challenges.