Office Hours with John Gardner
How can institutions encourage student persistence? Vincent Tinto’s work shifts the focus of issues in retention and completion from student to the system. He discusses his work and how institutions can improve retention.
Vincent Tinto is a Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at Syracuse University and the former Chair of the Higher Education Program. He has carried out research and has written extensively on higher education, particularly on student success and the impact of learning communities on student growth and attainment. His book, Leaving College, published by the University of Chicago Press, lays out a theory and policy perspective on student success that is considered the benchmark by which work on these issues are judged. His most recent book, Completing College, also published by The University of Chicago Press, lays out a framework for institutional action for student success, describes the range of programs that have been effective in enhancing student success, and the types of policies institutions should follow to successfully implement programs in ways that endure and scale-up over time. His most recent work explores what is learned about persistence and policies to address it when seen through the eyes of students.
He has received numerous recognitions and awards. He was awarded the Council of Educational Opportunity Walter O. Mason 2012 Award for his work on the retention of low-income students, the Council of Independent Colleges 2008 Academic Leadership Award, the National Institute for Staff Development International 2008 Leadership Award and was named Distinguished Fellow in the Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations. Most recently, he was named recipient of the 2015 President Harry S. Truman Award for the American Association of Community Colleges for his work for community colleges across America. He has some 50 notable publications, including books, research reports, and journal articles, to his credit and has lectured across the United States, Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, Denmark, Great Britain, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa and The Netherlands. From 1990 to 1996 he was associate director of the National Center for Teaching, Learning, and Assessment. He has worked with a number of organizations, foundations, and government agencies on issues of student success and sits on a number of advisory boards including the Community College Survey of Student Engagement, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and The Lumina Foundation.
Dr. Tinto received his B.S. from Fordham in Physics and Philosophy, his M.S. from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Physics and Mathematics, and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in Education and Sociology.