Projects

Researchers at AIR are conducting a study of adult-friendly learning models to improve understanding among stakeholders at postsecondary institutions and state system offices and policymakers about (1) What educational and training program models might best resonate with, and support access and success for, adult learners of color; and (2) how to take an asset-based approach to presenting information about program models in ways that are relevant to the strengths, motivations, and experiences of adult learners of color (particularly Black, Hispanic, and Native American adult learners.). Researchers will conduct interviews with and administer a survey to adults of color who are 1) are currently enrolled in postsecondary education; 2) have some postsecondary experience but no credential and are not currently enrolled; 3) have no recognized postsecondary education or training and may be considered current “non-consumers” of postsecondary education. Researchers will also work with a small group of external research partners on collaborative projects related to how adults of color participate in and make decisions about postsecondary education, growing the field with a more diverse and representative pool of experts.

Researchers from AIR supported the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics in data collection efforts related to IPEDS. Specifically, AIR staff prepared IPEDS survey components, developed and maintained written work products, prepared reports, verified statistics, provided expertise on complex data structures and data systems, and participated in planning meetings related to the postsecondary administrative data collection.

AIR is serving as an evaluation partner for the Data for the American Dream (D4AD) initiative. D4AD supports innovative efforts to expand access to education and career data, with the specific goal of helping students and jobseekers make better career decisions in a changing economy through data-driven information, and especially to help low-income and unemployed Americans access better jobs and education opportunities. AIR’s role is to help grantees, sponsors, and the field learn from these efforts.

AIR is supporting the implementation of the National Survey of Postsecondary Competency-Based Education, an annual Web-based survey of postsecondary institutions in the United States geared toward assessing the state of the competency-based education (CBE) field. The goals of this project are to grow the community of researchers within the National Research Collaborative on Postsecondary Competency-Based Education and Learning and build rigorous evidence for CBE’s efficacy to support responsible scaling. Click here for the latest infographic.

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 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.

AIR built a series of application program interfaces to allow non-college measures (CMs)-developed websites to access the underlying data and methods that power the CM tools within Country Music Television’s existing Empowering Education website. The goal of the project was to embed CM tools within several other non-CM websites.

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.

AIR conducted a retrospective study to examine American Society of Limnology and Oceanography Multicultural Program (ASLOMP) participant characteristics, experiences, and education and career outcomes. Two cohorts of study participants completed an online retrospective survey between July and November 2012, and study findings indicated that ASLOMP successfully attracted and retained students who are underrepresented in programs and careers in the aquatic sciences.

AIR developed a coaching series, administered biannually to Wisconsin Technical College System staff. The aims of the series were to support the colleges’ abilities to use research, research methods, and data collection and analysis strategies.