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Presentation on theme: "Www.inquiry2improvement.com How a Culture of Inquiry Can Help Your College Move the Needle on Student Success Dr. Rob Johnstone Texas Pathways to Progress."— Presentation transcript:

1 www.inquiry2improvement.com How a Culture of Inquiry Can Help Your College Move the Needle on Student Success Dr. Rob Johnstone Texas Pathways to Progress Institute Dallas, TX September 22, 2014

2 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Acknowledgements  Much of the content in this presentation in conjunction with national projects such as Completion by Design, the Aspen Prize for CC Excellence, and Bridging Research, Information & Cultures (BRIC)  Content has also been developed by and with a host of national partners, including: Community College Research Center (CCRC) Jobs for the Future JBL Associates Public Agenda The Research & Planning (RP) Group  Infographics were primarily designed by Greg Stoup

3 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Formalistic Doublespeak… Give your 1 st reaction to the following list of words: Accountability Accreditation Assessment Continuous Improvement Data-Driven Decision Making Evaluation Institutional Effectiveness Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Learning Outcomes Assessment Performance-based Funding Program Review Strategic planning

4 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Recapturing the Movement… Vivid imagery from previous slide Faculty, Student Services folks & leaders have been beaten over the head with these phrases they are correct to analyze that they too often haven’t led to authentic improvement and the more formal the process, often… There is good news for our improvement efforts – you can do all of the things captured by those words in more authentic and less formalistic ways

5 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Changing the Conversations… We have to make the conversation about things faculty, staff & administrators care about – students, their learning, and improving their outcomes and lives Not everybody will come along – but we don’t need everybody Org Change Thought: Red light / Yellow light / Green light People need to see their expertise acknowledged and integrated – and the effect of their efforts on outcomes

6 www.inquiry2improvement.com A Culture of Inquiry & Action 6 A RESOURCE for INSTITUTIONAL change April 2014

7 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement An Applied Inquiry Framework for Student Completion (CBD) 7 Stage 1 – Explore how to improve outcomes Stage 2 – Gather meaningful evidence Stage 3 – Discuss evidence broadly Stage 4 – Use evidence to inform change Stage 5 – Measure the impact of change

8 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement What is a Culture of Inquiry? 8 Institutional capacity for supporting open, honest and collaborative dialog focused on strengthening the institution and the outcomes of its students.

9 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Culture of Inquiry: Features ●Widespread access to user-friendly information on student outcomes ●Encouraging more people to ask a wider collection of questions and use their evidence and conclusions to enhance decision making ●Reflective and dynamic discussions across constituency groups 9

10 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Culture of Inquiry: More Features ●Continuous feedback so adjustments can be made along the way and processes can be adapted ●A sense of ownership over improving student outcomes – not blaming the student ●Using insight generated from inquiry to act at varying levels of the institution to create the conditions to improve outcomes 10

11 www.inquiry2improvement.com Explore how to improve student outcomes 11 Focus inquiry on designing approaches that improve student outcomes STAGE 1

12 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement How We Spend Our Time Matters…  When was the last time you sat in a standing committee meeting on your campus that used evidence to explore a key student progress, completion, labor market, learning or equity outcome for more than 20 minutes?  What types of questions do we spend most of our organizational resources answering?

13 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Malcolm Gladwell talks about the right question… 13 Link to full video: http://www.ted.com/talks/malcolm_gladwell_o n_spaghetti_sauce http://www.ted.com/talks/malcolm_gladwell_o n_spaghetti_sauce

14 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement The Right Question in the CC World… Placement Tests & Cut Scores 14 What was the problem we were trying to solve? I’d posit it was something like: “Can we find a short instrument that will help us assign incoming students to various levels of math & English?” Or… “How do we ensure higher levels of course success in transfer-level math & English courses? Are these the best questions? Why or why not? Note: current system of placement tests may not even be the best solution for this question: LBCC / CCRC

15 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement What if we tried to solve… 15 What placement process is the most predictive of transfer-level course success? Or…. What is the optimal curricular structure to ensure that the greatest number of students pass transfer-level math / English courses with appropriate rigor? Or….

16 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement More questions… 16 What is the optimal math curriculum that produces computational learning outcomes that most students will need in the real world? Or… Is writing about literature the optimal way to teach students the writing skills they need in their general education courses? What about in the real world?

17 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Organizing Question of Improvement Science: What problem are you trying to solve? 17

18 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement An Example from AB Tech in Asheville, NC… 18 We have to make sure our improvement efforts to trying to solve the right problem “Right” is slippery – the problem at hand may be important, but it might detract us from a larger problem that is of much higher impact to improving student outcomes AB Tech’s “One Stop” Onboarding process Original problem they were trying to solve: “How do we address the chaotic and disconnected nature of the onboarding of our new students?

19 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement One Stop Address the Chaotic Onboarding Problem, but… 19 As the AB Tech folks reflected on their efforts, they realized they might unintentionally communicate to students that it’s possible in four hours or one day to: assess interests match interests to careers pick a program register for classes figure out financial stability issues be ready for opening day be prepared for any bump in the road that might occur

20 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & ImprovementPerhaps… 20 A better question / problem to solve might be: “How do we ensure that students get the services they need – when they need them – as they move through their educational trajectory at our college?” Note that this still covers having a more streamlined onboarding experience – but recognizes that it sits in a larger context to be addressed

21 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement To sum up the starting line stage… 21 More focus on asking the right question, and ensuring we know what problem we are trying to solve – actually less focus on the data per se Sometimes exploring the data can help you realize you’ve been asking the wrong question - The Right Pepsi vs. The Right Pepsi’s Traditional questions: enrollment, course success, material covered Emerging questions: improving outcomes - completion, progress, learning, labor market, equity

22 www.inquiry2improvement.com Gather meaningful evidence 22 Collect high-quality, meaningful evidence at the student support, classroom, program, and institutional levels STAGE 2

23 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement When gathering evidence, make sure you are focusing on the right data… 23

24 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Persistence Rate Success Rate 1989 2008 20 year trend for California CC course success & persistence rates 24 What does that tell us about the usefulness of these metrics in setting institutional strategies?

25 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement The Aspen Prize’s Take on Data & Outcomes that Matter Progress / Completion Outcomes Labor Market Outcomes Learning Outcomes Equity in Achieving First Three Outcomes Examples of each in Appendix presentation…

26 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Gather meaningful evidence for the “Four Big Ideas for Redesign” 1.Structured Pathways / Programs of Study 2.Better On-ramps into POS Accelerated / co-curricular Dev Ed, First Year Experience 3.Intentional Student Support Structures Intake system, onboarding, advising 4.Monitoring Progress / Customized Feedback

27 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement 27 Progress Example 1: Grades in Sequenced Courses

28 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Grades in Sequenced Courses Backdrop Course sequences analyzed in Mathematics, English, Biology, Chemistry, Physics & Economics Relationship between grade in 1 st course in sequence and success in 2 nd course in sequence was examined. Enrollment data tracked over five-year period Selected highlight slides follow; full PPT provided on request

29 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Data Too Often Presented Like This… Status in Math 310Count% of Total N Success Rate in Math 310 A in Math 3085,65910%81% B in Math 3087,72613%60% C in Math 3087,23412%37% Unclear Status in Math 308*1,6753%16% Math 310 Repeater / Non Success14,56825%41% Math 310 Attempt was First Math Course16,81229%57% Taking Math 308 / 310 in Same Semester4,5058%68% Other4871%44% Total58,666100%53% 29

30 A B C The grade received by students in Math 308 Pre-Algebra Introductory Algebra Intermediate Algebra 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in Math 310 37% 60% 81% Math 306Math 308Math 310 Intermediate Algebra Math 310 B A Transfer- Level Those placing directly into Math 310 57% Math 1300s And Not Often Enough Like This…

31 A B C The grade received by students in Math 2413 Calculus ICalculus II 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in Math 2414 50% 78% 90% Calculus Course Sequence MATH 2413MATH 2414 Calculus II MATH 2414 B A Those placing directly into Math 2414 72%

32 A B C The grade received by students in English 307 One Level below Transfer Two Levels below Transfer 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in English 1301 46% 61% 74% Developmental Education Writing Course Sequence Those placing directly into English 1301 ENGL 307ENGL 306 Transfer Level English ENGL 1301 B A 71%

33 A B C The grade received by students in Biology 2401 AnatomyPhysiology 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in Biology 2402 50% 72% 88% College Biology Course Sequence BIO 2401BIO 2402 Physiology BIO 2402 B A Those placing directly into Biology 2402 67%

34 A B C The grade received by students in Chemistry 1411 General Chemistry I General Chemistry II 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in Chemistry 1412 46% 70% 86% College Chemistry Course Sequence CHEM 1411CHEM 1412 General Chemistry II CHEM 1412 B A Those placing directly into Chemistry 1412 66%

35 A B C The grade received by students in Economics 2301 Macro Economics Micro Economics 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Success Rate of those same students in Economics 2302 74% 81% 89% Economics Course Sequence ECON 2301ECON 2302 Micro Economics ECON 2302 B A Those placing directly into Economics 2302 71%

36 www.inquiry2improvement.com Discuss evidence broadly 36 Engage a variety of campus stakeholders in evidence-based discussions about improvements in practice STAGE 3

37 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Key Concept: Data do not speak for themselves Time & Space Needed to Explore Data, Make Meaning & Generate Insight 37

38 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement 38 Exploring Data Example: English & Math Preparedness & Success in GE Courses

39 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 31% 48% 68% 75% Not in an English course 64% 67% 33% Success Rate of those same students in Psychology 101 English course taking profile for students in Psychology 101 Note: Enrollments from Summer 2000 to Spring 2009; Success is defined as A/B/C/CR grade Success in Psychology 101 for students simultaneously enrolled in an English course English 826 (Two Below) English 836 (One Below) English 100 (Transfer A) English 110 (Transfer B)

40 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 43% 51% 63% 76% Not in an Math course 64% 63% 37% Success Rate of those same students in Psychology 101 Math course taking profile for students in Psychology 101 Note: Enrollments from Summer 2000 to Spring 2009; Success is defined as A/B/C/CR grade Success in Psychology 101 for students simultaneously enrolled in an Math course Fundamentals Beginning Algebra Intermediate Algebra Transfer Level Math

41 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 31% 48% 68% 75% Note: Enrollments from Summer 2000 to Spring 2009; Success is defined as A/B/C/CR grade Success in five highly enrolled GE courses by English enrollment level Psychology 101 Speech 101 Economics 101History 101HSCI 101 54% 57% 73% 82% 27% 56% 73% 79% 48% 43% 51% 64% 60% 74% 82% 88% English 826 (Two Below) English 836 (One Below) English 100 (Transfer A) English 110 (Transfer B)

42 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% 48% 58% 68% 76% Note: Enrollments from Summer 2000 to Spring 2009; Success is defined as A/B/C/CR grade Success in five highly enrolled GE courses by English enrollment level Fitness 334 Accounting 101 Music 202Biology 250Sociology 101 37% 50% 66% 73% 31% 64% 74% 80% 40% 60% 65% 50% 59% 74% English 826 (Two Below) English 836 (One Below) English 100 (Transfer A) English 110 (Transfer B) 40% N/A

43 www.inquiry2improvement.com Use evidence to inform change 43 Implement changes in practice and policy based on analyses and discussion of college evidence STAGE 4

44 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Use evidence to guide innovation ●In this context, research and applied inquiry are fundamentally interventionist in nature. ●We are not seeking absolute truths; rather we are looking for patterns of evidence that inform action-oriented decisions. ●Failure can be seen as an opportunity for learning, especially when outcomes are shared and used to inform further improvements in practice. 44

45 The process of inquiry is not a search for an absolute truth Domain of possible solutions We answer the questions that eliminate dead end solutions And what do we do when the evidence is ambiguous? Gregory M Stoup, Cañada College What to do when you reach the limits of your research and yet still face multiple choices? Trust your expertise & choose !

46 www.inquiry2improvement.com Measure the impact of change 46 Evaluate the impact of practice changes on student outcomes STAGE 5

47 www.inquiry2improvement.com Final Thoughts

48 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Final Reflections Creating or evolving your culture of inquiry isn’t magic; there are clear steps and resulting artefacts of such a culture Don’t focus too much on the data – the questions you ask are exponentially more important Remind yourself and your team to constantly ask: “What problem are we trying to solve?” 48

49 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement What we are shooting for… Great statement of the desired end state from a CC President at the Aspen / ATD Leadership Symposium: “A wider range of people on a campus ask a better set of questions about outcomes & act on their reflections to improve them.” 49

50 www.inquiry2improvement.com National Center for Inquiry & Improvement Find Out More 50 The National Center for Inquiry & Improvement website www.inquiry2improvement.com Dr. Rob Johnstone, Founder & President rob@inquiry2improvement.com CBD Inquiry Guides on Applied Inquiry & Nuances of Completion: http://www.inquiry2improvement.com/publications- resources http://www.inquiry2improvement.com/publications- resources


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