In light of our 20th anniversary, our lead story is a look at longitudinal trends in student engagement drawing from annual data averaging more than 300,000 students and 461–725 institutions per year since 2004. The results suggest that colleges and universities participating in NSSE have made concerted efforts to improve in key areas, improvements that are evident in broad, aggregate results throughout the time span. The second story is from our newly updated Academic Advising Topical Module, and examines results from 25,000 students at 57 institutions that used the module in 2019. Results point to an important conclusion–that the quality of academic advising is far more important than the number of advising visits. Finally, we share findings on the relationship between student engagement and college persistence from more than 17,000 first-year students at 75 institutions that participated in a grant-funded study. Student attrition after the first year is costly for students and institutions, so it is affirming that institutions that engage students in and outside of the classroom may do a better job retaining their students.
Look for the “Faculty Insights”
The faculty insights shared throughout this report come from the 2019 administration of the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE), based on results from 16,190 faculty from 120 bachelor’s-granting colleges and universities in the United States (118) and Canada (2). FSSE measures faculty members’ expectations and practices related to student engagement in educational activities that are empirically linked with high levels of learning and development. FSSE results, especially when used in combination with NSSE findings, can identify areas of institutional strength as well as aspects of the undergraduate experience that may warrant attention. More information is available on the FSSE website
Institution Stories – Examples of Data Use
Throughout this section you’ll also find four brief examples on how institutions put NSSE data to use. Many more examples are documented in our series, Lessons from the Field.