Projects

AIR is evaluating STEMfast, a program developed by New Mexico Highlands University to provide comprehensive support services to Hispanic students and students from low-income backgrounds who are studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEMfast addresses the underrepresentation of these students in STEM fields and works to decrease the likelihood that developmental core subject courses will deter these students from persisting and graduating from college.

AIR is conducting a 3-year evaluation of 12 separate organizations selected by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as Intermediaries for Scale. The goals of evaluation are to support the Foundation’s postsecondary strategy by better understanding the relationships between intermediary capabilities and institutional transformation.

Researchers at the Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest, operated by AIR, conducted a study to examine Algebra II completion and failure rates in Texas for high school students. This period spans (a) the point at which Texas began implementing the 4x4 curriculum that required four courses each in English, math (including Algebra II), science, and social studies, and (b) when the state moved to the new Foundation High School Program—which eliminates Algebra II as a math requirement—with the 2014/15 cohort.

AIR’s College and Career Readiness and Success Center (CCRS Center) collaborated with CareerWise, the Colorado Department of Education, and the Colorado Workforce Development Council to support the expansion of work-based learning (WBL) opportunities in Colorado. The CCRS Center developed the capacity of a Colorado team to maintain and revise WBL geographic information system map applications. The goal of the project was to improve place-based and data-driven decision making.

The Regional Educational Laboratory Midwest, operated by AIR, is conducting a study to better understand career and technical education (CTE) course offerings in Indiana and Minnesota and identify gaps in access to high-quality CTE programming in these states.

AIR created an online tool that allows users in Florida to view the return on investment associated with completing a degree from a particular state institution, in a particular major, at a particular level. The tool incorporates data from multiple sources, including statewide completion data, the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, and Gallup. AIR also produced a report describing the earnings outcomes for college completers of different levels of degrees in different majors from Florida institutions, as well as discussing student debt levels and job growth information. The goals of the project were to present the state’s educational outcome data in a way that makes it easy for users to compare and make decisions about their educational path.

Researchers at the Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest, operated by AIR, conducted a study to investigate (a) the percentage of Round Rock Independent School District (ISD) graduates from 2012/13 through 2017/18 who completed one or more career and technical education (CTE) programs of study; (b) the percentage of Round Rock ISD CTE programs of study aligned with high-wage, in-demand career pathways in Central Texas; (c) the percentage of Round Rock ISD graduates completing programs of study aligned to those high-wage, in-demand career pathways; and (d) postsecondary outcomes of Round Rock ISD graduates who completed a program of study.

AIR is supporting the Business Higher Education Forum in developing a logic model, an implementation plan, and an evaluation plan to address the need for more digital technology professionals in the Washington, D.C., region. The goal of this grant is to identify implementation needs and opportunities and develop a scalable and replicable model for increasing the number of digital technology professionals in the region.

Working with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Gallup, AIR developed state-specific Web applications that allow students to learn more about programs of study in their state that provide preparation for growing, middle-class wage jobs. These Web applications connect prospective students to state longitudinal data related to wage outcomes of particular programs and help them calculate and understand the relationship between their desired standard of living and choices of occupations, programs, and schools.

AIR created an online tool that allows users in Utah to view the return on investment associated with completing a degree from a particular state institution, in a particular major, at a particular level. Researchers incorporated data from multiple sources, including statewide completion data, data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, Gallup, and more, to build the tool. The goal of the tool was to present the state’s educational outcome data in a way that makes it easy for users to compare and make decisions about their educational path.