Development of the quantitative reasoning items on the National Survey of Student Engagement
Dumford, A. D., & Rocconi, L. M.
Numeracy, 8(1), Article 5, 2015.
As society‘s needs for quantitative skills become more prevalent, college graduates require quantitative skills regardless of their career choices. Therefore, it is important that institutions assess students‘ engagement in quantitative activities during college. This study chronicles the process taken by the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) to develop items that measure students‘ participation in quantitative reasoning (QR) activities. On the whole, findings across the quantitative and qualitative analyses suggest good overall properties for the developed QR items. The items show great promise to explore and evaluate the frequency with which college students participate in QR-related activities. Each year, hundreds of institutions across the United States and Canada participate in NSSE, and, with the addition of these new items on the core survey, every participating institution will have information on this topic. Our hope is that these items will spur conversations on campuses about students‘ use of quantitative reasoning activities.
Participation in undergraduate research at minority-serving institutions
Haeger, H., BrckaLorenz, A., & Webber, K.
Perspectives on Undergraduate Research and Mentoring, 4(1), 1-22, 2015.
This research used a national dataset to examine factors associated with participation for underrepresented minority (URM) students, benefits of participation at minority-serving institutions, and examples of programs that work to decrease barriers for URM participation in UR. Findings showed that Latino and first-generation students participated in UR less than White peers, but students at Minority Serving Institutions who participated in research with a faculty member reported using more learning strategies, increased collaboration, and having more experience with quantitative reasoning than students not participating in an UR experience.
Making college count: An examination of quantitative reasoning activities in higher education
Rocconi, L. M., Lambert, A. D., McCormick, A. C., & Sarraf, S. A.
Numeracy, 6(2), Article 10, 2013.
Findings from national studies along with more frequent calls from those who employ college graduates suggest an urgent need for colleges and universities to increase opportunities for students to develop quantitative reasoning (QR) skills. To address this issue, the current study examines the relationship between the frequency of QR activities during college and student and institutional characteristics, as well as whether students at institutions with an emphasis on QR (at least one QR course requirement for all students) report more QR activity. Results show that gender, race-ethnicity, major, full-time status, first-generation status, age, institutional enrollment size, and institutional control are related to the frequency of QR activities. Findings also suggest that such activities are indeed more common among institutions that emphasize QR.
Learning online: Unintended consequences for engagement?
Dumford, A. D., & Miller, A. L.
Hawaii International Conference on Education, Honolulu, HI, 2016, January.
A rapidly increasing number of colleges and universities are looking for ways to deliver course content online. This paper investigates the effects of taking courses through an online medium on students‘ engagement using data from the 2015 administration of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE). A series of 10 OLS regression analyses, controlling for certain student and institutional characteristics, suggested several significant effects of taking online courses for first-year students as well as seniors. Students taking more courses using an online medium showed higher use of learning strategies and quantitative reasoning yet lower collaborative learning, student-faculty interactions, effective teaching practices, discussions with diverse others, and quality of interactions. The change in these engagement indicators based on the percentage of classes taken online reveals that the online environment might encourage certain types of engagement but not others.
Using canonical correlation analysis to examine student engagement and learning
Zilvinskis, J., Masseria, A., & Pike, G. R.
Association for Institutional Research Annual Forum, Denver, CO, 2015, May.
Using canonical correlation analysis, this study examines the relationships between measures of student engagement from NSSE and perceived gains in learning. The study draws on institution-level data from NSSE participants in 2011 and 2013. Several significant relationships were found between engagement and learning. For example, learning outcomes associated with application, like acquiring job-related skills, were positively associated with the engagement indicators of quantitative reasoning and collaborative learning. This presentation also provides attendees with an introduction to the logic and methods underlying canonical correlation analysis.
Playing with numbers: An examination of quantitative reasoning activities in college
Rocconi, L. M., Lambert, A. D., Sarraf, S. A., & McCormick, A. C.
Association for Institutional Research Annual Forum, New Orleans, LA, 2012, June.
Direct and indirect effects of engagement on grades
Gonyea, R., Cole, J., & Rocconi, L.
Association for Institutional Research Annual Forum, New Orleans, LA, 2016, June.
Grades are perhaps the best predictor of a attaining a college diploma. Using NSSE data from nearly 20,000 first-year and senior students in 2012 and matched year-end grades from 42 participating institutions, the authors tested path models to determine the direct and indirect effects of student background, engagement, and campus environment on end of year grades. Total effects on GPA show that time spent studying, the use of learning strategies, and courses where faculty used effective teaching strategies had positive overall effects on grades. Coursework involving quantitative reasoning had a negative effect, probably due to the added rigor of STEM courses.
The mediator of student-faculty interaction and learning outcomes
Mu, L., Ribera, A., & Wang, X.
Association for Institutional Research Annual Forum, Denver, CO, 2015, May.
Do seniors‘ learning effort to engage in Higher-Order Learning, Reflective and Integrative Learning, Learning Strategies, and Quantitative Reasoning mediate the effect of Student-Faculty Interaction (SFI) on Learning Outcomes as measured by self-reported college grades and gains in knowledge, skills, and personal development?
Using the updated NSSE to support evidence-informed improvement and accreditation
Higher Learning Commission Annual Conference, Chicago, IL, 2015, March.
The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) and its affiliated surveys, FSSE and BCSSE, provide a fresh look at engagement, including insights about learning with technology, quantitative reasoning, and learning strategies. This presentation highlights findings, including those from the survey's new Topical Modules, and illustrates effective uses of NSSE results in accreditation as well as approaches to supporting evidence-informed improvement.
A fresh look at student engagement for accreditation and improvement
Higher Learning Commission Annual Conference, Chicago, IL, 2014, April.
The updated National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), and its affiliate surveys, FSSE and BCSSE, provide a fresh look on engagement, including insights about learning with technology, quantitative reasoning, and learning strategies. This session will highlight findings, and demonstrate effective uses of NSSE results in accreditation self-studies and quality improvement.
In A fresh look at student engagement—Annual results 2013, 13.
Introducing the Updated NSSE Survey for 2013
In Promoting student learning and institutional improvement: Lessons from NSSE at 13—Annual results 2012, 15.