Teaching honors courses: Perceptions of engagement from the faculty perspective
Miller, A., Silberstein, S., & BrckaLorenz, A.
Journal of Advanced Academics, , , 2020.
Research suggests that honors students are more likely to be engaged in some, but not all, aspects of the college experience, although there is less information available from the faculty perspective. This study presents findings from the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE), comparing various engagement-related practices between faculty who teach honors courses and those who do not. Along with core FSSE items, this study uses responses from 1,487 faculty members at 15 institutions on two items about teaching honors courses. A series of ordinary least squares regression analyses suggest that faculty who teach honors courses are more likely to encourage engagement in the areas of student?faculty interaction, learning strategies, and collaborative learning, even after controlling for other demographic and institutional variables. These findings are considered within the context of existing research and theory, connecting knowledge from higher education and gifted education.
Reassessing disparities in online learner student engagement in higher education
Paulsen, J., & McCormick, A. C.
Educational Researcher, 49(1 January-February), 20–29, 2020.
Online learning is the fastest growing segment in U.S. higher education and is increasingly adopted in public and private not-for-profit institutions. While the impact of online learning on educational outcomes is becoming more clear, the literature on its connection with student engagement is sparse. Student engagement measures identify key aspects of the learning process that can improve learning and outcomes like retention and achievement. The few studies investigating the link between online learning and student engagement found positive benefits for online learners compared to face-to-face learners in terms of perceived academic challenge, learning gains, satisfaction, and better study habits. On the other hand, face-to-face learners reported higher levels of environment support, collaborative learning, and faculty interaction. However, these studies did not effectively account for the differences in background characteristics like age, time spent working or caring for dependents, and enrollment status. Further, they did not consider the increasingly large population of students who enroll in both online and face-to-face courses. In our study, we used propensity score matching on the 2015 National Survey of Student Engagement data to account for the disparities in these groups? demographics variables. After matching, we found that some of the previous literature?s differences diminish or disappear entirely. This suggests differences in supportive environments and learning strategies have more to do with online student characteristics than learning mode. However, online learning still falls well below other modes in terms of collaborative learning and interaction with faculty.
Do high achieving students benefit from honors college participation? A look at student engagement for first-year students and seniors
Miller, A. L., & Dumford, A. D.
Journal for the Education of the Gifted, 41(3), 217–241, 2018.
This study investigates findings from the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), comparing various aspects of student engagement between honors college and general education students. Responses from 1,339 honors college students and 7,191 general education students across 15 different universities suggest a positive impact for honors college participation on reflective and integrative learning, use of learning strategies, collaborative learning, diverse discussions, student-faculty interaction, and quality of interactions for first-year students, even when controlling for student and institutional characteristics. For senior students, honors college participation was related to more frequent student-faculty interaction. Potential experiential and curricular reasons for these differences are discussed, along with implications for educators, researchers, parents, and students.
International student engagement: An exploration of student and faculty perceptions
Wang, R. & BrckaLorenz, A.
Journal of International Students, 8(2), 1002-1033, 2018.
An increasing number of faculty have brought up questions and concerns about supporting international students? academic engagement and success. However, little is known about faculty?s approaches to international student engagement and how they may differ from international students? self-reported engagement at four-year institutions. Using data from the National Survey of Student Engagement and Faculty Survey of Student Engagement, both large-scale and multi-institutional datasets, this study explores international student engagement in learning strategies, collaborative learning, and student-faculty interaction as well as international student engagement from the perspectives of faculty and students. Recommendations on supporting international student engagement from an individual faculty level, department level, and institutional level are discussed.
The who, what, and where of learning strategies
Dumford, A. D., Cogswell, C. A., & Miller, A. L.
The Journal of Effective Teaching, 16(1), 72-88, 2016.
Learning strategies have been shown to be an important part of success in the classroom, but little research exists that examines differences across major fields concerning the use and faculty emphasis of learning strategies. This study uses data from the National Survey of Student Engagement and the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement to explore whether there is congruence for academic disciplines between the student use and faculty encouragement of learning strategies. Patterns in the results suggest that are certain fields, including health professions, biology, agriculture, natural resources, and social service professions most frequently emphasizing and using learning strategies, while others, including engineering, physical sciences, mathematics, and computer science are less likely to do so. OLS regression models also suggest demographic and environmental predictors of student use of learning strategies, such as gender, enrollment status, cumulative college grades, Greek affiliation, and participation in a learning community. Potential reasons for and implications of these findings are discussed.
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.
Promoting student success: Creating conditions so every student can learn
Chickering, A. W., & Kuh, G. D.
Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research, 2005.
Accommodating diverse learning styles of students has long been espoused as a principle of good practice in undergraduate education. Much progress has been made during the past two decades in using active, collaborative, and problem-based learning, learning communities, student-faculty research, service learning, internships, and other pedagogical innovations to enrich student learning. Variable time blocks are more common--from three hours, to all day, to weekends, to six or eight weeks--to fit the desired outcomes, content, and processes. Peers tutor other students, deepening their own learning in the process. Increasingly sophisticated communication and information technologies provide students access to a broad range of print and visual resources and to an expanded range of human expertise. A wider range of assessment tools document what and how well students are learning. Despite all this activity, at too many schools these and other effective educational practices are underutilized. The suggestions offered here are drawn in large part from a study of 20 diverse four-year colleges and universities that have higher-than-predicted graduation rates and, through the National Survey of Student Engagement, demonstrated that they have effective practices for fostering success among students of differing abilities and aspirations. These institutions clearly communicate that they value high quality undergraduate teaching and learning. They have developed instructional approaches tailored to a wide range of student learning styles, ensuring that students engage with course content and interact in meaningful ways with faculty and peers, inside and outside the classroom.
Creative coursework exposure: Enhancing college student engagement across disciplines
Miller, A. L.
Southern Oregon University Creativity Conference, 2018, August.
Previous research suggests that creativity training can be effective in academic settings and that teachers, in particular, can have an impact on creativity (Scott et al., 2004). Furthermore, incorporating creativity into classroom activities and assignments can encourage student engagement in the educational process (Halpern, 2010). This study extends research on creativity and student engagement in higher education, using data from the ?Senior Transitions? topical module of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE). Responses from over 61,000 seniors at 266 different U.S colleges and universities were used to explore how exposure to creative coursework can predict student engagement in a variety of areas. NSSE‘s measure of creative coursework includes items on generating new ideas, taking risks without fear of penalty, evaluating multiple approaches to problems, and inventing new methods. Ordinary least squares regression models were conducted to determine the effect of creative coursework exposure on NSSE‘s established measures of student engagement: reflective and integrative learning, higher-order learning, use of learning strategies, collaborative learning, diverse discussions, student-faculty interaction, effective teaching practices, quality of interactions, and supportive environment. The results suggest that creative coursework is a significant positive predictor of student engagement, even after controlling for sex, transfer status, enrollment status, first-generation status, age, SAT/ACT, race/ethnicity, major, grades, percentage of online courses, control (private/public) and size. Potential reasons for these patterns of results will be discussed. These findings can help to inform curricular and programming enhancements for college students across all major fields, enriching their educational experiences through exposure to creative coursework.
A comparison of international students’ engagement and faculty perceptions of international student engagement
Wang, R., & BrckaLorenz, A.
American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, San Antonio, TX, 2017, April.
With the exponential growth of international students pursing degrees at U.S. colleges and universities, an increasing number of faculty and staff have brought up questions and concerns about supporting international students‘ academic engagement and success. Although prior studies have explored the educational experiences of international students in the US, only a small number of them have investigated international student engagement at four-year institutions. Little is known about faculty‘s approaches to international student engagement and how they may differ from international students‘ self-reported engagement. Using large-scale and multi-institutional survey datasets, this quantitative study aims to explore international student engagement in learning strategies, collaborative learning, and student-faculty interaction, and to compare international student engagement from the perspectives of faculty and students. Recommendations on supporting international student engagement from an individual faculty level, department level, and institutional level are discussed in the end.
Maintaining inequality: An analysis of college pathways among women at large public institutions
Tukibayeva, M., Ribera, A. K., Nelson Laird, T. F., & BrckaLorenz, A.
American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, 2016, April.
Armstrong and Hamilton (2013) proposed a framework of three college pathways?party, professional, and mobility?that lead to economically unequal postgraduation outcomes and vastly different college experiences for female students. Using data from the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), we examined the responses from 42,504 women seniors at 183 four-year large public institutions to identify how the potential income of their college major choice relate to the pathways. We found that the economic advantage of major choice is not equally distributed among students: party pathway students selected the least lucrative college majors, professional pathway students selected the most lucrative majors, and first-generation students on all pathways tended to select majors with less potential income than their peers with college-educated parents. Students on the three pathways also engaged differently in three measures of academic engagement (three of the ten NSSE Engagement Indicators): Reflective and Integrative Learning, Learning Strategies, and Student-Faculty Interaction.
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.
Learning strategies in high school and first year in college
Mu, L., & Cole, J.
Association for Institutional Research Annual Forum, Orlando, FL, 2018, May.
Due to the different academic demands on students between high school and college, high school students transitioning to college often experience unanticipated academic difficulty. One consistent factor for academic success in high school and college is an effective use of learning strategies. However, given the varying academic demands, it is not clear how consistently students engage in the effective use of learning strategies across these two environments. The stability of these learning strategies across these two domains is relatively unknown. The research questions for this study are 1. Does the use of learning strategies change from high school to the first year in college? 2. Do individual students change their learning strategy use after entering college? 3. Is an institution's academic environment associated with individual students' leaning strategy use?
Gifted education at the college level: Are faculty who teach honors courses really more engaging?
Miller, A. L., & Silberstein, S. M.
American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, New York, NY, 2018, April.
This study presents findings from the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE), comparing various engagement-related practices between faculty who teach honors courses and those who do not. Along with core FSSE items, this study uses responses from 1,487 faculty members at 15 institutions on two experimental items about teaching honors courses. A series of OLS regression analyses suggest that faculty who teach honors courses are more engaging in the areas of student-faculty interaction, learning strategies, and collaborative learning. Additional analyses for high-impact practices also suggest that faculty who teach honors courses are more likely to work with undergraduates on research, and to think that it is important for students to participate in learning communities, study abroad, and research with faculty.
Do high achieving students benefit from honors college participation? A look at student engagement for first-year students and seniors
Miller, A. L., & Dumford, A. D.
National Association for Gifted Children Annual Convention, Orlando, FL, 2016, November.
This study investigates findings from the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), comparing various aspects of student engagement between Honors College and general education students. Responses from 1,339 Honors College students and 7,191 general education students across 15 different universities suggest a positive impact for Honors College participation on reflective and integrative learning, use of learning strategies, collaborative learning, diverse discussions, and student-faculty interaction for first-year students, even when controlling for other student and institutional characteristics. For senior students, Honors College participation suggested more frequent student-faculty interaction. Potential experiential and curricular reasons for these differences are discussed.
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.
To read or not to read? Investigating students' reading motivation
Ribera, A. K., & Wang, R.
Professional & Organizational Development Conference, San Francisco, CA, 2015, November.
Motivation to read plays a significant role in college students' academic engagement and overall performance. Faculty may influence students' reading motivation through the types of reading they assign and strategies to approach the reading assignments. Disciplinary context also plays a unique role. Using data from 2013 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), this study investigates differences in college students' reading motivation by assignment type. Variation by students majoring in hard and soft fields at four-year colleges and universities are also explored. Recommendations for ways faculty may enhance students' reading motivation are provided.
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.
The who, what, and where of learning strategies
Miller, A. L., Lambert, A. D., & Ahonen, C.
Association for the Study of Higher Education Annual Conference, Washington, DC, 2014, November.
This study uses data from the National Survey of Student Engagement and the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement to explore whether there is congruence for academic disciplines in the student use and faculty encouragement of learning strategies. OLS regression models also suggest demographic and environmental predictors of student learning strategies.
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 Engagement insights: Survey findings on the quality of undergraduate education—Annual results 2016, 5 - 6.
Motivating Students to Do Their Best Work
In Engagement insights: Survey findings on the quality of undergraduate education—Annual results 2015, 5.
Enduring Effects: The Benefits of Good High School Study Habits Carry Forward into the First College Year
In Engagement insights: Survey findings on the quality of undergraduate education—Annual results 2015, 8.
In A fresh look at student engagement—Annual results 2013, 12.
Introducing the Updated NSSE Survey for 2013
In Promoting student learning and institutional improvement: Lessons from NSSE at 13—Annual results 2012, 15.
Learning Strategies by Major Category
In Fostering student engagement campuswide—Annual results 2011, 16.
Learning Strategies of First-Generation Students
In Fostering student engagement campuswide—Annual results 2011, 16 - 17.