Stories of Hope
February 3, 2022
Day 1: New insights on student academic experiences, adaptations to the pandemic, and institutional challenges confronted by students from diverse backgrounds.
Richard Arum, Professor of Sociology and Education, School of Education, University of California Irvine
A large group of interdisciplinary researchers have come together at UCI with support from the Mellon Foundation to develop a state-of-the-art measurement system focused on supporting institutional improvement, advancing educational equity, and demonstrating the value of undergraduate education. The project team developed a framework for measuring student development and has integrated unprecedented data from students’ administrative records, clickstream data from the campus’ learning management system, weekly surveys, experiential sampling logs, and innovative performance assessments. Project findings have generated new insights on student academic experiences, adaptations to pursuing education during a pandemic, and institutional challenges confronted by students from diverse backgrounds. Data-driven approaches to improving undergraduate education that capture the breadth and depth of student experiences hold the promise of improving student outcomes, rallying public support, and transforming the sector to expand access and equity during troubled times.
Michael Dennin, Professor of Physics & Astronomy, Dean of Division of Undergraduate Education and Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning University of California Irvine
John Gardner, Founder, and Executive Chair, John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education
Jillian Kinzie, Associate Director, Center for Postsecondary Research and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) Institute, Indiana University School of Education, and Board of Directors, Gardner Institute
Shari G. McMahan, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, California State University, San Bernardino
Thomas Parham, President, California State University, Dominguez Hills
Jamey Rorison, Senior Program Officer at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Americans believe strongly in the value of college, and they are asking “What is college worth?” To help answer that question, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation supported the launch of the Postsecondary Value Commission, a group of thirty leaders representing post-secondary institutions, federal and state policy offices, the civil rights, workforce, and research communities, advocates, and undergraduate students. So what did the commission find? More importantly, what does it mean for our shared efforts to help more of today’s students start and complete the path to an education that puts them on the path to a better living and a better life?
Henry Shannon, Superintendent/President, Chaffey College