AIR is conducting a consensus study on behalf of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s (NASEM) Committee on Defense Research at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Other Minority Institutions (MIs) that will examine the status of Department of Defense (DoD) research at HBCUs and other MIs. The goal of the study is to gain understanding of the methods and means necessary to advance research capacity at these institutions to comprehensively address the national security and defense needs of the United States.
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 staff support the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), and recently we created a resource page on the IPEDS data collection and release process. The page also provides guidance for data reporters and users on issues related to survey components and web tools for data analyses.
Evaluation of the Texas House Bill 3 Financial Aid Application Requirement for High School Graduation
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.
Investigating the Capacity of Historically Black Colleges and Universities to Develop, Accommodate, and Graduate Low-Income STEM Students
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.
On February 23, 2022 the AIR Equity Initiative hosted the second in a series of equity-focused roundtable discussions. A panel was followed by a Q&A with experts who explored approaches to reducing bias and promoting diversity and inclusion within organizations and in grant-making and policymaking processes. The experts and AIR staff discussed how these approaches can enhance research and technical assistance and improve policy.
AIR's Kathy Hughes coauthored a recent publication funded by Lumina foundation that seeks to better understand noncredit workforce education and its future. To assess the range of existing community college noncredit programs, interviews were conducted with administrators at 29 U.S. colleges. The data show that community college noncredit workforce education varies greatly across colleges, and many of its aspects are undergoing transformation.
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.
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.
In a recent virtual event, College Promise hosted a panel featuring top academic voices to discuss this disconnect. The panel heard from CARPE Director, Alexandria Walton Radford, and other experts on top priorities for research in the field, including economic benefits from a national, federal, and state partnership, the future of the workforce, and how this affects postsecondary education and underemployment amongst college graduates.
Washington's College Bound Scholarship Program and its Effect on College Entry, Persistence, and Completion
This study examined Washington's College Bound Scholarship program and how it affected college entry, persistence, and completion. The study found that the scholarship program shifted enrollment from out-of-state to in-state colleges at which the scholarship could be used.
The Effects of Middle School Remediation on Postsecondary Success: Regression Discontinuity Evidence from Florida
This study from the CALDER Center examines the short-, medium-, and long-term effects of remedial courses in middle school using a regression discontinuity design. While the short-term test score benefits of taking a remedial course in English language arts in middle school fade quickly, the study found significant positive effects on the likelihood of taking college credit-bearing courses in high school, college enrollment, enrolling in more selective colleges, persistence in college, and degree attainment.
Researchers from AIR administered a survey to participants of the Keystone Scholars program, a statewide Child Development Account (CDA) program created by the Pennsylvania Treasury Department. The aims of the study were to capture parents’ expectations for their child’s educational future within the first year of their child’s life and to gather information on parents’ financial knowledge, assets, and savings behavior, as well as demographic information.
AIR, under a grant funded by Walmart, conducted a scan of free college tuition program websites in spring 2021. This scan culminated in a project website, which contains an interactive map, a report, a downloadable database of programs, and a webinar that explores how free college tuition programs for adults might better leverage employers in establishing and advancing programs.
AIR, in collaboration with Student Veterans of America, will examine veterans’ experiences with, and perceptions of, having their learning recognized by a postsecondary institution as they try to obtain a postsecondary credential. The goals of the project are to develop a better understanding of the challenges veterans face in receiving recognition of their learning by postsecondary institutions, and to inform and support institutions’ efforts to address those challenges. Click here for more information.
The Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest, operated by AIR, in collaboration with the Southwest College and Career Readiness Research Partnership, studied the ability of these indicators to predict postsecondary readiness (ACT score of 19 or above) and success (college enrollment and persistence within eight years of beginning grade 6) for Arkansas students who entered grade 6 in 2008/09 or 2009/10. The study’s findings can help state and local education agencies, both in Arkansas and across the nation, identify and support middle and high school students who are on and off track for attaining postsecondary readiness and success.
This infographic examines five well-known, publicly available national college rankings systems chosen because of their widespread use and/or their focus on student outcomes.
Do College and Career Readiness and Early College Success in Indiana Vary Depending on Whether Students Attend Public, Charter, or Private Voucher High Schools?
This report identifies type of high school enrollment (e.g., traditional public schools, charter schools, and private voucher schools) for Indiana students enrolled in grade 9 in 2010/11–2013/14 and examines their performance on indicators of college and career readiness and early college success.
AIR conducted a randomized controlled trial to determine the effects of Early College High Schools, which allow students to take a mixture of high school and college-level courses. The study examined the impacts of Early College High Schools on college enrollment and degree completion up to 6 years after expected high school graduation, in addition to a cost-benefit analysis of Early College High Schools. The goals of the study were to estimate the longer-term impacts of Early College High Schools on student postsecondary outcomes and compare the financial costs and benefits of these schools.
This blog post uses data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) to present key statistics on distance education course offerings and enrollments at U.S. colleges.