Archive | Student Retention

Deconstructing Education

Higher Ed: For Students, the Sum of the Parts May Be Greater than the Whole

It’s common knowledge among those of us researching student retention in online higher education that swirling (attendance by a student at multiple institutions) is much more prevalent with online, than on-ground, programs.  Some of the explanations offered include that it’s easier to switch from one online program to another and there’s less social integration among online students so less social stigma in leaving. Others posit that online students are much more savvy about reviewing courses at multiple institutions to enable them to build a richer collection of courses. Lastly, some note that the more frequent semester starts offered by online institutions makes it more conducive for students switching schools to accommodate their personal and work schedules, and to finish their program sooner. 

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International Coaching Week logo

Leading with Coaching Competencies to Inspire Teaching Excellence

This week, May 16-22, 2016, the APUS Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) celebrates International Coaching Week (ICW). According to the International Coach Federation, “ICW educates the public about the value of working with a professional coach and acknowledges the results and progress made through the coaching process.” To this end, American Public University System (APUS) developed a comprehensive coaching and mentoring initiative.

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Graduation Gap Wider than Enrollment Gap for the Poor

Graduation Gap Wider than Enrollment Gap for the Poor

Susan Dynarski’s June 2 article in The New York Times elicited more than a few tweets. Dr. Dynarski, a professor of education, public policy and economics at the University of Michigan, wrote about a project called the Education Longitudinal Study that began tracking 15,000 high school sophomores in 2002. Last month, the researchers updated their educational attainment data for those sophomores and issued a report.

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Personalization and Respect Central to Creating Value for Non-Traditional Students

Guest Post: Personalization and Respect Central to Creating Value for Non-Traditional Students

APUS is dedicated to implementing best practices and programs for our students that support their academic and personal success.  In this guest post, Caroline Simpson, APUS assistant provost of student services, shares her thoughts on personalization of service, transparency of options, and various support practice benefits. 

*Snippet from Evolllution

Non-traditional students expect a level of service from institutions that is, frankly, foreign to many higher education leaders.

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Sweet Briar

Change is Hard but – if Needed – Change before it’s Too Late

Last week’s announcement that Sweet Briar College would close in August came as a shock to many. Some alumnae have organized a fundraising campaign to keep Sweet Briar alive and others are wondering why a college with an $84 million endowment and 700 students had to close while it still had cash in the bank. The board cited an unsustainable enrollment decline as one of the reasons.

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Educational Attainment: Tracking the Academic Success of Servicemembers and Veterans

Educational Attainment: Tracking the Academic Success of Servicemembers and Veterans

While much has been written about college persistence and retention related to traditional college students (18-22 year-olds matriculating immediately after high school graduation), substantially less has been written about adult students, particularly those whose jobs and family obligations make it difficult to attend college in a traditional face-to-face classroom structure. Many of the published research papers about non-traditional or online student persistence have been single-institution studies, offering little ability to make comparisons between studies because of the lack of common definitions and benchmarks.

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The Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy

The Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy

Last week, I attended the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) and American Council on Education (ACE) Summit for Online Leadership and Strategy in San Antonio. Less than two years ago, I was asked to serve on the UPCEA Center for Online Leadership and Strategy Advisory Council. Part of the Center’s role was to plan the first summit that took place in San Diego last year.

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Exploring Institution-to-Institution Student Swirling Patterns

On October 30, my colleagues Dr. Phil Ice, vice president of research and development, Dr. Melissa Layne, director of research methodology, and I presented a research paper at the Online Learning Consortium (formerly Sloan Consortium) annual conference in Orlando, FL. The research was conducted utilizing data submitted to the National Student Clearinghouse as well as the outcomes and analysis of the Clearinghouse data as compared to our data.

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