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Supporting the Engagement, Learning, and Success of At-Risk Students Part I Tom Brown Innovative Educators webinar series March 18, 2009 tom@tbrownassociates.com www.tbrownassociates.com

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Title: Supporting the Engagement, Learning, and Success of At-Risk Students Part I Tom Brown Innovative Educators webinar series March 18, 2009 tom@tbrownassociates.com www.tbrownassociates.com


1
Supporting the Engagement, Learning, and Success
of At-Risk StudentsPart ITom Brown
Innovative Educators webinar seriesMarch 18,
2009 tom_at_tbrownassociates.comwww.tbrownassociat
es.com
2
There are within us seeds of who we might
become. Thich Nhat Hanh
3
The interactions students have in the academic
and social domains are critical to their
satisfaction, achievement and success. Leaving
College Rethinking the Causes and Cures of
Student Attrition Vincent Tinto, 1987, 1993
4
The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate
"apparently ordinary" people to unusual effort.
The tough problem is not in identifying winners
it is in making winners out of ordinary people.
K. Patricia Cross, Professor of
Higher Education Emerita University of
California, Berkeley
5
Todays workshopWhat are some characteristics
of students at-risk?
  • What challenges do they confront in their pursuit
    of their goals?
  • What strengths do they bring that could increase
    their success?

6
Todays Workshop.What can the individual
educator do to support students who are at-risk?
  • What existing offices, programs, services, and
    people need to collaborate in support of specific
    at-risk groups?
  • What new programs, services and interventions
    might we need to develop and implement?

7
Increasing student persistence is a continuing
concern in higher education
8
National Graduation Rates
  • n Mean
  • Two-year public 442 29.3
  • Four-year public MA 166 38.8
  • Four-year public PhD 173 48.6
  • Four-year private MA 348 55.4
  • Four-year private PhD 173 63.4
  • Overall 1661 46.2
  • Completion in 3 years for Associates 5
    years for BA/BS Source ACT Institutional Data
    File, 2008
  • www.act.org

9
Why students leave college
  • Psychological Factors
  • Environmental Factors
  • Structural Societal Factors

10
What happens to students after they enroll
frequently has a more powerful impact on whether
they stay and achieve their goals or leave.
Tinto
11
Some Institutions seem to be more effective than
others in helping students from a wide range of
abilities and background succeed How
College Affects Students Pascarelli
Terenzini, 2005
12
Retention practices with greatest impacton
student persistence
  • First-year programs
  • Advising interventions for specific student
    populations
  • Learning support
  • What Works In Student Retention
  • Habley McClanahan, 2004

13
Some at-risk groups in education
  • First-generation/Low SES students
  • Adult and re-entry students
  • Student with disabilities
  • Student-Athletes
  • First-year students
  • Undecided students
  • LGBTQ students
  • Students of Color
  • Underprepared students
  • Transfer students

14
Categories of otherness Beverly D. Tatum, 1997
  • Otherness
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Gender
  • Religion
  • Sexual Orientation
  • Socio-economic status
  • Age
  • Physical/Mental Ability
  • Form of oppression
  • Racism/ethnocentrism
  • Sexism
  • Religious oppression
  • Homonegativism
  • Classism
  • Ageism
  • Ableism

15
Treating everyone the same may be equal
treatment, but it may not be equitable treatment.
16
A Principle Human beings seek to economize on
the energy required to make distinctions.
17
Todays Session
  • First-generation /Low SES students
  • Adult and re-entry students
  • First-year students
  • Students of Color/
  • Multicultural students

18
March 25 Session
  • Student-Athletes
  • LGBTQ Students
  • Undecided Students
  • Under-prepared Students

19
First Generation-Low SES Students
20
Forty percent of new students are the first in
their families to attend college. (National
Center for Education Statistics, 1996, 1998,
2001)Often, they are not as academically or
socially prepared as others and are prone to drop
out. Watson Scott Swail, President Educational
Policy Institute Chronicle of Higher
Education, 1/19/04
21
40 of first generation students leave
college without a degree.they are more likely to
come from low income families. US
Department of Education, 2005
22
First Generation Facts
  • More likely to be older, low income, married with
    dependents
  • 57 are women
  • 23 in lowest SES quartile
  • More likely to be enrolled in two-year colleges
  • More likely to be in certificate vs. Bachelors
    programs.
  • Nunez Cuccaro-Alamin, 1998

23
Some Americans Are Much Less Likely to Graduate
From CollegeBachelors degree earned by age 24
SES is a weighted variable developed by NCES,
which includes parental education levels and
occupations and family income. High and low
refer to the highest and lowest quartiles of SES.
Source Family Income and Higher Education
Opportunity 1970 to 2003, in Postsecondary
Education Opportunity, Number 156, June 2005.
24
The idea that the offspring of the poor have
chances as good as the offspring of the rich,
well thats not true. It is not respectable in
scholarly circles anymore to make that
argument. Gary Solon, Economist University
of Michigan New York Times, May 15, 2005
25
First generation status appears to be a
disadvantage throughout postsecondary education
that is independent of other background and
enrollment factors. Choy, 2001
26
Non-Academic Challenges for First-Generation
Students
27
Some keys to student success
28
Link to Resources
  • First Generation Students
  • http//www.nacada.ksu.edu/Clearinghouse/AdvisingIs
    sues/1st_Generation.htm

29
How can the individual educator support first
generation students?
  • What existing offices, programs, services, and
    people need to collaborate in support of first
    generation students?
  • What new programs, services and interventions
    might be needed?

30
Adult/Re-entry students
31
Adult students return to college for a variety of
reasons
32
Differences between adult learners and younger
student populations
33
Adult Students
  • Key characteristics
  • Most work full or part-time
  • Family responsibilities a priority
  • Less involvement with campus life
  • Managing multiple roles
  • Varied life experiences
  • Time challenged
  • Low self concept based on previous academic
    experiences

34
Link to Resources
  • Adult Learners
  • http//www.nacada.ksu.edu/Clearinghouse/AdvisingIs
    sues/adultlearners.htm

35
How can the individual educator support adult
students?
  • What existing offices, programs, services, and
    people need to collaborate in support of specific
    adult students?
  • What new programs, services and interventions
    might be needed?

36
Students of ColorMulticultural Students
37
There is Rapid Growth Among Groups Who Already
Are Under-Represented
Source U.S. Census Bureau, Population Projections
38
Some Americans Are Much Less Likely to Graduate
From College
39
A Challenge in Diversity TrainingEfforts to
teach about diverse groups can lead to
stereotyping.People from the same group are
often diverse based on SES, education, age,
individual experiences, etc.
40
Critical Issues for Students of Color
  • Difference between college and previous
    educational settings
  • Minority for the first time
  • Lack of mentors and role models
  • Issues of identity development
  • Brown and Rivas, 1997

41
Stereotype Threat
  • Arises when students of color are in situations
    where their performance could result in their
    being reduced to a stereotype, where they could
    be judged by a stereotype, or where judgments
    about them could be made based on a
    stereotype. Professor Claude M. Steele
  • Stanford University, 1995

42
Stereotype ThreatBlack kids can be shy in the
classroom because if they make a mistake, it can
be taken as a stereotype and confirmation of
their being academically inferior. Steele
Aronson, 1995
43
Schools can eliminate some of the stereotype
tension by building trust between teachers and
students and protecting student identities and
confidence in the classroom. Steele
Aronson, 1995 see http//reducingstereotypethr
eat.org
44
Validation TheoryMany non-traditional students
want their doubts erased about their being
capable of learning.This is especially true
for first generation students, Hispanic and
African American students. Laura Rendon,
1994
45
Some keys to student success
46
Pluralistic Teaching and Advising Skills
  • Understand, acknowledge, value difference.
  • Self-assess biases and attitudes.
  • Increase knowledge base of diverse groups
  • Use culturally appropriate strategies.
  • Avoid over-generalizations.
  • Brown Rivas, 1994, 1997, 2004

47
How can the individual educator support students
of color?
  • What existing offices, programs, services, and
    people need to collaborate in support of students
    of color?
  • What new programs, services and interventions
    might be needed?

48
Link to Resources
  • Students of Color
  • Multicultural Students/
  • http//www.nacada.ksu.edu/Clearinghouse/AdvisingIs
    sues/Multicultural.htm

49
First-Year Students
50
National Drop Out RatesFreshman to Sophomore Year
  • n Mean
  • Two-year public 824 46.3
  • Four-year public MA 220 30.0
  • Four-year public PhD 227 27.1
  • Four-year private MA 502 27.7
  • Four-year private PhD 220 19.6
  • Overall 2582 32.7 Source ACT
    Institutional Data File, 2008
  • www.act.org

51
Many students who leave college do so as the
result of experiences they have during the first
six weeks. Astin, Tinto, Crockett
52
Ann Lynchs Moving In, Moving Through, and Moving
On provides a conceptual framework for organizing
programs and services for students. Arthur
Chickering. George Mason University Empowering
Lifelong Development NACADA Journal, Fall 1994
53
Changing Environment Changing
Students1st Year 2nd Year 3rd Year 4th, 5th,
6th Year
Need for Information
Changing Needs for Advising
Need for Consultation
Moving In Moving Through Moving On I
I/S I/S S/I
S I Faculty, advisors, etc. S Student
Changing Contexts for Advising
  • PRESCRIPTIVE
    DEVELOPMENTAL
  • Lynch, 1989 Brown Rivas, 1994 Creamer, 2000
    Brown, 2006

54
Helping students move into college is far and
away the most important task for academic
advisors. Professor Arthur
Chickering, 1994
55
Ask entering students what they fear most about
going to college and they will probably say
dropping out. Lee Upcraft Orienting
Students to College, 1984.
56
The freshman year is taking a real toll on
students physical and mental health. Colleges
are paying more attention to what happens in the
transformative first-year. Your First Year
of College Policy Center on the First-year
of College Chronicle of Higher Education,
2/1/02
57
A major part of working with first year students
is helping them understand that theyre not in
high school anymore. Sam Gorovitz, Professor
of Philosophy Former Director, First Year
Programs Syracuse University
58
Most students are never taught how to study. We
call it the hidden curriculum. Marcy
Fallon University of Maryland, 2002
59
How can the individual educator support
first-year students?
  • What existing offices, programs, services, and
    people need to collaborate in support of
  • first-year students?
  • What new programs, services and interventions
    might be needed?

60
Link to Resources
  • First-Year Students
  • http//www.nacada.ksu.edu/Clearinghouse/AdvisingIs
    sues/First-Year.htm

61
Strategies That Work
  • Proactive interventions
  • Target services for specific populations
  • Encourage group study
  • Develop skills in context
  • Encourage utilization of campus resources
  • Connect with mentors

62
Intrusive Advising
  • Intrusive advising means taking a personal
    interest in students and approaching them with an
    open caring attitude.
  • A personal relationship with a concerned member
    of the campus community can reduce the
    psychological distance that hinders academic
    integration.

63
Intrusive Advising
  • Early outreach is the key to effective support
    for at-risk students.
  • Effective advisors of at-risk students must
    insist on regular contact whether students think
    they need it or not. Spann and VanDett

64
No student service is mentioned in retention
research more often as a means of promoting
student persistence than academic advising. The
Strategic Management of College
Enrollments Hossler and Bean, 1990
65
Quality interaction with faculty seems to be more
important that any other single college factor in
determining minority student persistence. Levi
n and Levin 1991
66
Good advising may be the single most
underestimated characteristic of a successful
college experience. Richard Light, 2001
67
For community college students, frequent
interaction with faculty and advisers outside of
class all had a positive impact on preventing
students from dropping out. Regina Deil
Amen Chronicle of Higher Education August
17, 2005
68
Most faculty agree there is a relationship
between academic advising and retention.
69
There is a relationship between advising and
retention. (n1594)Agree/strongly
agree 86Disagree 4 Brown Survey,
2001-2006
70
Most faculty report having had little or no
training or other preparation prior to beginning
their work in advising.
71
When I first began to advise, I had adequate
preparation and training. (n1570) Strongly
agree/agree 30Disagree/strongly
disagree 53 Brown Survey of Faculty,
2001-2006
72
58 of campuses have programs in place for
advisor training. Advising Needs
Report Noel-Levitz, 2006
73
Teaching Competencies
  • Developed after educators arrive on campus
  • Requires colleges to deliver professional
    development programs to enhance student learning
    inside and outside the classroom

Brown and Ward, 2007
74
Professional Development
Conceptual What educators should UNDERSTAND
Informational What educators should KNOW
Relational What educators should DO
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