Friday, November 20, 2009

Increasing Transfers

A Chronicle article "Report Highlights Characteristics of Colleges With High Transfer-Success Rates" cites a new publication from The Pell Institute about successful transfer programs. The new report hasn't shown up on that organization's publications page yet, but there are some interesting tidbits in the review:
The study found that early exposure is critical to ensuring a successful transition to college, especially for students who are from low-income families or are the first in their families to go to college. Such students are likely to be unfamiliar with higher education and what it will take to earn a bachelor's degree.
This echoes what I found in a retention study--first generation students didn't really understand the product they were buying, and quickly became disenchanted once they arrived (here).

The article lists some elements of successful two-year programs that built bridges to four year programs:
  • specialized advising
  • flexible scheduling of academic and support services
  • first-year seminars that include strategies on note taking, test taking, and navigating campus services
  • one-stop shops, where services such as registration and financial aid are placed together in one central location
  • replacing a tall customer-service counter with desks to make the interaction between students and staff members more accessible and personal
  • offering clubs and organizations
  • setting aside an hour each day when no classes were scheduled to further encourage participation
  • employing faculty and staff members of similar backgrounds to their students
I imagine that many of these elements would work from the other perspective too: implemented for students at four-year institutions who seek to increase transfers from two-year institutions.

No comments:

Post a Comment