Working Group 2 & 4 Critical Resources for Demonstrating Impact

Click to download a PDF version of the Working Groups 2 and 4 Critical Resources for Demonstrating Impact (Acrobat (PDF) 85kB Sep8 20).

Intended Audience

Higher education administrators, faculty involved in campus-based change efforts; change agents on a campus; directors of centers for teaching/STEM/etc.

Overview

Have you ever felt as if you were faced with an impossible decision regarding allocation of funding or resources? In higher education we are often called upon to improve educational outcomes with scarce institutional resources. We are asked to make difficult fiscal decisions without the tools we need to determine the possible fiscal and moral implications of supporting new initiatives and projects. If you have wondered whether it is possible to make modest changes that have a great impact, while also saving money and resources, the answer is yes.

The ASCN Costs, Benefits, and Demonstrating Impact Working Group created this resource list to share tools and examples that can help with evidence-based fiscal decision making. These resources demonstrate that it is possible to invest scarce institutional resources wisely to advance your priorities. They were gathered to address questions and issues you might be facing at your institution, such as:

  • Increasing learning outcomes for all students;
  • Adopting instructional practices to improve retention, increased enrollment, persistence, etc.;
  • Articulating and communicating the benefits of institutional change to potentially skeptical decision-makers both inside and outside the university;
  • Quantifying both the cost and return on investment of implementing instructional change during transitions and over the long-term;
  • Determining how to best implement institutional change into institutional budgeting, planning, and decision-making.
We think you will find the resources particularly helpful if you are working to address these kinds of questions:

  • What are some of the cost categories associated with implementing instructional change during transitions and long-term?
  • Have the costs of instructional change initiatives been documented and has the return on investment been measured?
  • Is there guidance about how to undertake such measurement at my institution?
  • Are there any strategies in place for embedding considerations of potential benefits and associated costs into institutional budgeting, planning, and decision-making? What are some of these strategies?
  • How can we make explicit increased learning outcomes for all students associated with instructional change?
  • Other than typical benefits like improved learning outcomes and more satisfying teaching experiences, what other kinds of benefits are envisioned from improving instructional practices at the department, college or university level (e.g., retention, increased enrollment, persistence, etc.)?
  • What are some ways of articulating and communicating various types of benefits to potentially skeptical decision-makers inside and outside the university?



Help

Results 1 - 10 of 22 matches

Competency-based education: A study of four new models and their implications for bending the higher education cost curve
Donna M. Desrochers; Richard L. Staisloff
In this report the authors assess CBE programs at four institutions by considering business models, costs, etc. and what is required from institutions to 'get to breakeven'. The four institutions anticipate breaking even with their programs by the fifth year, and they project that by the sixth year these programs will be operating at half the cost of the traditional academic programs. The article describes how an evaluation of the competency- based education business model must include considerations regarding price, efficiency (academic delivery structure, staff ratios, and compensation), and scale (student recruitment, enrollment, and retention).

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Resource Type: Report
Program Components: Professional Development:Curriculum Development, Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning, Professional Development:Course Evaluation

Whether and How Money Matters in K-12 Education
Margaret L. Plecki; Tino A. Castańeda
The authors review the research on the allocation of resources to support improvement of student learning in public K-12 education, including policies, methodological issues, and availability of data.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Resource Type: Journal Article
Program Components: Outreach:Outreach to K12 Teachers and Students, Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

Active learning narrows achievement gaps for underrepresented students in undergraduate science, technology, engineering, and math
Elli J. Theobald; Mariah J. Hill; Elisa Tran; Sweta Agrawal; E. Nicole Arroyo; Shawn Behling; Nyasha Chambwe; Dianne Laboy Cintrón; Jacob D. Cooper; Gideon Dunster; Jared A. Grummer; Kelly Hennessey; Jennifer Hsiao; Nicole Iranon; Leonard Jones II; Hannah Jordt; Marlowe Keller; Melissa E. Lacey; Caitlin E. Littlefield; Alexander Lowe; Shannon Newman; Vera Okolo; Savannah Olroyd; Brandon R. Peecook; Sarah B. Pickett; David L. Slager; Itzue W. Caviedes-Solis; Kathryn E. Stanchak; Vasudha Sundaravardan; Camila Valdebenito; Claire R. Williams; Kaitlin Zinsli; and Scott Freeman
This study is a comprehensive meta-analysis of research on the influence of active and traditional learning approaches on STEM course outcomes (exam scores and course failure rates) for underrepresented students. Time-intensive active learning experiences contributed to reduced achievement gaps in exam scores and pass rates. Researchers concluded that deliberate active-learning course designs and inclusive teaching contribute to increasing equity in STEM. Although this study does not discuss cost-benefits, it affirms the value of investing in pedagogical enhancements to increase student retention and success. In this case, the benefits are continuous tuition revenue through student retention and the moral imperative of reducing equity gaps.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Resource Type: Journal Article
Program Components: Supporting Students:Student Engagement, Professional Development:Curriculum Development, Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning, Professional Development:Diversity/Inclusion

How UT-Austin's Bold Plan for Reinvention Went Belly Up
Lindsay Ellis
This article provides a cautionary tale about large institutional efforts to redesign undergraduate education and the challenges of measuring what works. In 2016, UT Austin pledged to revamp undergraduate education, adding state-of-the-art online classes, redesigned curricula, and short courses, among others, to produce less expensive degrees, teach practical skills and expand access via technology. Dubbed "Project 2021" it also committed to measure what worked and adjust accordingly. By 2019, the project was deemed too ambitious and lacked support to continue. Several lessons about the impact of changes in undergraduate teaching are useful. For example, implementing regular quizzes in large classes narrowed grade disparities between students from different socioeconomic groups. Massive online classes modeled after late-nighttalk shows were hailed as a national model for using technology to deliver remote instruction and billed as next-generation undergraduate programs. Yet, while students rated the online courses highly, evaluations of student learning showed no advantage to the course delivering mode, and the cost for the heavily produced studio quality courses was high. Key conclusions from the project evaluation is that it was very complicated and lacked direction, got caught in bureaucratic processes, and was expensive.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, Institution Administration
Resource Type: Report, Website
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

Valuing Assessment: Cost-Benefit Considerations
Randy L. Swing; Christopher S. Coogan

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration
Resource Type: Report
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

Improving Learning and Reducing Costs: Fifteen Years of Course Redesign
Carol A. Twigg

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration, College/University Staff
Resource Type: Journal Article
Program Components: Professional Development:Curriculum Development, Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

Investing in Success: Cost-Effective Strategies to Increase Student Success
Jane Wellman; and Rima Brusi

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration
Resource Type: Report
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

What Is the Potential for Applying Cost-Utility Analysis to Facilitate Evidence-Based Decision Making in Schools?
Fiona Hollands; Yilin Pan; Maya Escueta
The authors investigated the feasibility of applying a decision-making framework based on cost-utility analysis to facilitate decision-making. A key challenge was guiding decision makers to find suitable evidence.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration, College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty
Resource Type: Journal Article
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning

The Economic Impact of Increasing College Completion
Sophia Koropeckyj; Chris Lafakis; Adam Ozimek
While this report does not include institutional-level guidance on measuring costs and benefits of instructional improvement, it does offer helpful context for broader economic effects of student success and degree completion. Many institutions are working to be responsive to demands by the public and policy- makers that they articulate their economic impact. Arguments and data included in this report can be helpful in that messaging, and can help change leaders tie program improvement to broader outcomes, which may help to garner leadership support.

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration, Tenured/Tenure-track Faculty, College/University Staff, Non-tenure Track Faculty
Resource Type: Report
Program Components: Supporting Students:Student Engagement, Institutional Systems:Incentive/Reward Systems, Strategic Planning

Benefit–Cost Analysis of Undergraduate Education Programs: An Example Analysis of the Freshman Research Initiative
Rebecca L. Walcott; Phaedra S. Corso; Stacia E. Rodenbusch; and Erin L. Dolan
The authors comprehensively describe how to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of an undergraduate education program, using a detailed real-life example to illustrate the process. Principal conclusion: the university's investment in Freshman Research Initiative generates a positive return for students in the form of increased future earning potential (p. 1).

Change Topics (Working Groups): Costs and Benefits
Target Audience: Institution Administration, College/University Staff
Resource Type: Journal Article
Program Components: Institutional Systems:Strategic Planning, Professional Development:Course Evaluation, Institutional Systems:Evaluating Teaching