Blog

Designing Libraries to Support Community College Students

Among the growing number of ethnographic studies of college students, only a tiny number look at students on community college campuses, and even fewer look specifically at how these students do their academic work and use the library. But community college students constitute an enormous and important group. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, about 7.2 million of the 20.5 million undergraduates in the US are enrolled in…

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Publication

Reflections on Ethnographic Studies in a Community College Library System

Montgomery College, the community college of Montgomery County, Maryland, has made an enormous contribution to the study of libraries in community colleges with a series of reports about ethnographic studies on all three of its campuses.[1] Tanner Wray, Director of College Libraries and Information Services, led the studies, which gathered information from students and faculty members on how …


Event

Collaborative Libraries Assessment Across a Multi-Campus College
A Session at the Library Assessment Conference

At the Library Assessment Conference, Nancy Fried Foster, joined by Montgomery College's Tanner Wray and Cynthia Pfanstiehl, will talk about a multi-year, multi-campus assessment project that Montgomery College undertook with Ithaka S+R. Details: Library Assessment Conference Arlington, Virginia Monday, October 31, 1:30 -3:15 pm  


Blog

A “How To” Guide to Effective Transfer Pathways

While a large majority of community college students aspire to a bachelor’s degree, only 14 percent will earn one within six years. But that deeply disappointing overall statistic hides a lot of variation: in some contexts, the pathway through two-year and four-year colleges to a bachelor’s degree is a much easier one. Often, the difference is not the students themselves or the resources, but how institutions work with students and…

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Will Easing the Financial Burden of Dual Enrollment Improve College Outcomes for Low-Income Students?

As I’ve noted previously, the percentage of low-income (family income in the bottom 20 percent) high school graduates that have enrolled in two- and four-year institutions declined from 55.9 percent in 2008 to 45.5 percent in 2013. Studies examining dual enrollment programs—in which students take courses for college credit while still in high school—have found that participating in such programs increases the likelihood of college degree attainment, especially for low-income…

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Starting from Scratch: Lessons from Guttman Community College

A growing number of America’s community colleges are redesigning their curricula, advising services, faculty development programs, and relationships with four-year institutions in order to help more students succeed. In most cases, reforms take place within existing operating structures, as gradual processes of cultural and institutional change. In contrast to institutions that reorganize existing operations around student success, Stella and Charles Guttman Community College, the newest of the City University of…

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Publication

Student Success by Design
CUNY’s Guttman Community College

A growing number of American community colleges are redesigning their curricula, advising services, faculty development programs, and relationships with four year institutions in order to help more students succeed. In most cases, reforms take place within existing operating structures, as gradual processes of cultural and institutional change. A response to dismal persistence and completion rates at community colleges, Guttman was …


Blog

Valencia College’s Collaborative Re-design

“Culture” is often treated as a mystery ingredient in the recipe for promoting student success. A good culture catalyzes well-designed interventions and produces positives results. A bad culture impedes the take-up or spread of practices that should otherwise work, leading to disappointment. But like airborne yeast in a sourdough, an institution either has good culture or it doesn’t. But what if culture weren’t a background condition? What if, instead, it…

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Publication

Collaborating for Student Success at Valencia College

In recent years, a promising conversation about change at community colleges has emerged. Employing the language of redesign and reinvention, this conversation emphasizes comprehensive, broad-sweeping reform, and calls for a reorientation of community college missions around student learning and student success. Though it is hard to disagree that improving student outcomes is desirable, the traditional enrollment and funding models for …


Blog

CUNY’s ASAP Program Helps Students Graduate
Will It Scale?

Last week, Inside Higher Ed reported that the City University of New York plans to scale-up their Accelerated Study in Associate Programs, or ASAP, at six CUNY community colleges and three senior colleges that offer associate degrees. The most aggressive effort to expand ASAP will be at Bronx Community College, where all new full-time students will be automatically enrolled in the program. One goal of the plan is to increase…

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