Voices and Viewpoints

Finding the Right Tool Among Many for Transforming Pathways

by Edmund Graham III / Mar 17, 2016

As we assess and make decisions about our research and many leadership efforts, one question is often at the forefront: How do we make sure that our work is both meaningful and useful in the field to help improve and support student success?

This question led us this fall to think about how we can help practitioners, many of whom are actively striving to be “data-driven” or “evidence-based” in their practice, to make sense of and apply the many types of evidence and many sources of data (particularly those available in OCCRL’s products) in a systematic and accessible manner. In other words, to start to make OCCRL’s work in the pathways field even more useful.  

OCCRL has produced a great deal of work on practices, populations, and principles to be used by institutional agents to produce equitable outcomes for students on their pathways. What we haven’t done is illustrate how the various publications, findings, and products can fit together in specific contexts to address problems of student success. In our latest Insights on Equity and Outcomes brief— Transforming Pathway Performance: Leveraging Key Knowledge of Pathways Principles, Populations, and Practices we sought to do this by offering a facilitation tool to bridge what we know from research with how campus practitioners make decisions in the field.  

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This facilitation tool is now available in its first published iteration. However, we welcome your input as we begin to think about how we can make it even better. How do you see this facilitation tool being used within your institution? In what ways can it be improved to addressed contextual nuances that differentiate one institution from another? 

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