This journal article used a systematic review methodology to identify and summarize findings from studies that examined the effects of losing grant aid due to policy changes and students’ failure to meet renewal requirements. The studies reviewed show negative effects on student outcomes when grant aid was reduced or eliminated.
AIR participated in a workgroup organized by The Century Foundation consisting of researchers, practitioners, and policymakers focused on developing a research agenda that estimates the true costs of providing a community college education and what implications this might have for funding policy reform. This work culminated in three research briefs, one of which AIR co-authored.
AIR, in collaboration with 2M Research and Education Strategies Group, is designing and executing the National Evaluation of Career and Technical Education Under Perkins V. The evaluation will assess the implementation of CTE under the new law, how CTE participation and outcomes are evolving over time, and the effectiveness of CTE strategies permitted under Perkins V in improving key student outcomes. The evaluation will satisfy a legislative mandate in Perkins V and will give Congress and other policymakers a comprehensive assessment of CTE under the new law.
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.
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.
Researchers from AIR conducted an evaluation of CareerSource North Central Florida's Opportunity Quest program. The program leveraged U.S. Department of Labor Strengthening Working Families Initiative funding to simultaneously address the job training needs and childcare barriers among low-income, low-skilled parents, giving them the flexibility to train toward a sustainable career path. Through partnerships with Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), education and training providers, community-based organizations, and local employers, Opportunity Quest linked custodial parents with flexible childcare resources and supportive services and aimed to provide them with an innovative training program offering occupational and entrepreneurial skills training to help participants develop employability and information technology (IT) skills.
AIR has partnered with Quality Education for Minorities to expand effective strategies to support talented, low-income students pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). For this new National Science Foundation-funded project, AIR's Jennifer Hudson and Mahlet Megra will lead mixed-methods research on the capacity of HBCUs to develop, accommodate, and graduate STEM students.
Through a grant with the Institute of Education Sciences, AIR's Lynn Mellor and Jason Lee are examining the implementation and outcomes associated with Texas’s enactment of a statewide policy requiring students to complete a financial aid application as a high school graduation requirement. The study aims to learn how districts are supporting students and parents regarding completing college financial aid applications and how this may lead to increased college enrollment for Texas high school students.
In 2022, Ascendium will launch an open Request for Proposals (RFP) aimed at addressing gaps in evidence for strategies that support rural learners from low-income backgrounds in earning degrees and credentials with labor market value. Through this RFP, Ascendium has committed funding for 8-10 projects, employing a diverse mix of research methods and subjects, that respond to one or more overarching research question themes. To optimize the design, implementation, and cross-project learning potential of this initiative, Ascendium awarded a grant to AIR to serve as an intermediary partner to support RFP design, grant management, and synthesis of insights across the funded multi-faceted research efforts.
AIR, in collaboration with Quality Education for Minorities and the Kapor Center, is examining learning environments that enable undergraduate students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to thrive and subsequently attain doctoral degrees in science and engineering (S&E). The goals of the study are to (a) identify unique characteristics of S&E learning environments at the 21 HBCUs ranked as top producers of Black baccalaureate degree recipients who earn S&E doctorates (“anchor institutions”), (b) identify HBCUs that have similar characteristics as the anchor institutions and have a high potential to graduate students who go on to earn doctoral degrees, and (c) develop and disseminate a model that builds HBCU capacity to produce graduates who go on to earn S&E doctorates. Click here to access the project website.