Documents and Internet Resources
Acceleration in Context (AIC) is a comprehensive new initiative with the central aim of introducing accelerated curriculum and pedagogy into a broad cross-section of disciplines and programs across the state, even potentially the nation. Acceleration in Context is a markedly different expression of Acceleration than other models encountered around the country, even though there is overlap and certainly some shared goals. Most of these expressions of Acceleration are defined primarily by structural changes in course offerings. However, years of experience and research tell us that tinkering with structure is not enough to address the epidemic of failure going on in Basic Skills classrooms.
Accountability Reporting for the Community Colleges or ARCC is a state-mandated report that provides an annual overview of system performance on specific indicators (transfer, vocational certificates, participation, etc.), along with college demographics and college performance on certain indicators (transfer, ESL, basic skills, vocational, etc).Achieving the Dream: Community Colleges Count
Achieving the Dream is a multi-year national initiative to help more community college students succeed. The initiative is particularly concerned about student groups that traditionally have faced significant barriers to success.
Prepared by the Legislative Analyst’s Office, this 2008 report provides an overview of CCC policies and practices in addressing basic skills. It identifies system-wide CCC policies and practices that are at odds with generally accepted strategies for improving basic skills education and recommends structural and system-wide changes to improve student preparedness and success.
This 2013 resource replaces the "Poppy Copy" and is the result of over 5 years of Basic Skills Initiative project implementation throughout the state. It includes information on programs, practices and projects that have proven to be successful and that have the data to back them up. In addition, it includes a section to help administrators and researchers assure that processes and resources are available to guarantee success.
The Basic Skills Cohort Tracking Tool on the Chancellor’s Office website gives all 112 California community colleges immediate, easy access to data on student progress through their English, reading, ESL, and math pipelines. Envisioned and sponsored by 3CSN, this online tool was developed by the Research and Planning Group in collaboration with the CCCCO.
Chancellor's Office Official Basic Skills Site. Includes links to BSI reports, forms, resources.
Basic Skills as a Foundation for Student Success in California Community (also known as the “Poppy Copy” because of its bright cover) is the definitive BSI document which contains effective practices, planning, evaluation, and budget tools for implementation of the BSI in 4 areas: Organizational and Administrative practices, Program Components, Staff Development, and Instructional practices. It’s used in creating the annual basic skills action plan required by the Chancellor’s office.
Under the auspices of the Chancellor’s Office, the Basic Skills Initiative (BSI) is a collaborative statewide effortto address the needs of academically under-prepared community college students to succeed in their coursework. Initially the BSI identified effective practices and devised a self-assessment tool to be used by individual colleges. Over several years, beginning in 2005-06, colleges have been required to submit annual action plans in return for categorical funding to implement the plans.
3CSN is a permanent professional learning community among the 112 California community colleges and the CCC Center for Professional Learning.
- Hosts BSI Leadership Institutes
- Sponsors Learning in Networks for Knowledge Sharing (LINKS) regional workshops
- Provides an interactive virtual network to support professional development and share information
- Makes available web resources and archived workshops
CB 21 coding is used to classify credit courses that comprise the basic skills pathways leading to transfer-level courses in English and math at the various colleges. Courses are designated according to discipline (reading, writing, math, and ESL), and assigned a code based on descriptive rubrics designed by faculty experts. These rubrics for coding and aligning basic skills sequential courses were adopted by all 110 community colleges in spring 2009 and implemented in spring 2010. The data provided by CB21 is used by the ARCC report to capture student progress.
The Center, a research and service initiative of the Community College Leadership Program in the College of Education at The University of Texas at Austin, provides important information about effective educational practice in community colleges. The Center assists institutions and policymakers in using information to promote improvements in student learning, persistence, and attainment.
The Center conducts a collection of national surveys:
- Community College Survey of Student Engagement (CCSSE)
- Community College Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (CCFSSE)
- Survey of Entering Student Engagement (SENSE)
- Community College Institutional Survey (CCIS)
The Center also hosts several related initiatives:
- Initiative on Student Success
- High-Impact Practices Initiative
- Student Success BY THE NUMBERS Initiative
Housed at the Institute on Education and the Economy, Teachers College, Columbia University, CCRC focuses on the problems and performances of community colleges in the United States. It does extensive research on policies and practices relating to student access and success.
This handbook is designed for faculty, student services personnel, and administrators who are working with students that have basic skills needs. It’s useful for anyone teaching specific basic skills courses or teaching transfer courses that include students with basic skills needs, staffing tutoring labs, providing student services, helping to develop Basic Skills Action Plans or acting as a Basic Skills Coordinator.
This Chancellor’s Office site contains a searchable database of community college programs strategies and practices that have both demonstrated student success and provided sufficient quantitative and/or qualitative data to substantiate their effectiveness.
This article by Pat Hutchings and Molly Breen appeared in The League for Innovation in the Community Colleges’ Abstracts January 2009 (v12.n1). This article describes successful practices for teaching and learning basic skills English and math that were identified by Strengthening Precollegiate Education in Community Colleges (SPECC). The approaches include learning communities, supplemental instruction/tutoring, and instructional technologies.
This 2011 document, which was developed jointly by the National Council of Teachers of English, the Council of Writing Program Administrators, and the National Writing Project, identifies the rhetorical and twenty-first-century skills as well as habits of mind and experiences that are critical for student success in transfer-level college courses.
"At its essence, the Framework suggests that writing activities and assignments should be designed with genuine purposes and audiences in mind (from teachers and other students to community groups, local or national officials, commercial interests, students’ friends and relatives, and other potential readers) in order to foster flexibility and rhetorical versatility. Standardized writing curricula or assessment instruments that emphasize formulaic writing for nonauthentic audiences will not reinforce the habits of mind and the experiences necessary for success as students encounter the writing demands of postsecondary education."
Meaningful access and academic support are imperative to increase graduation rates, develop an educated workforce, strengthen the economy, and compete globally. This August 2013 white paper issued by the Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations (CLADEA) lays out five imperatives to forge a path toward increased college completion, explores policies that restrict or inhibit access and academic support, describes features of successful academic support programs, and responds to recent developmental education research. The paper is endorsed by a number of nationally recognized organizations including ACTLA and NADE.
Video of documentary film made at Chabot College about student experiences with college reading.
The Research & Planning Group for California Community Colleges provides leadership in research, planning, and assessment within the California community college system. It provides a newsletter, has online resources for educators, and sponsors the annual Strengthening Student Success Conference. It houses the Center for Student Success, which conducts research and evaluation projects by utilizing the skills and unique perspectives of college researchers, faculty, and administrators.
Report by the Little Hoover Commission that concludes the community colleges, in trying to be all things to everyone, are coming up short for many. The February 2012 report covers much of the same ground as the Student Success Task Force and more. It cites a lack of clear goals for the community college system, identifies problems, such as lack of student preparation, lack of access to classes, failure to complete programs and certificates, lack of sufficient support services, etc., and makes recommendations to help students move through the system in a more productive and effective manner.
Adopted by the Statewide Academic Senate in 2000, this document gives an overview of basic skills in the California Community Colleges. It includes definitions, practices, challenges, and exemplary programs. It also makes recommendations for local senates to follow to increase the success of basic skills students.
Website of the Task Force created by Senate Bill 1143 (Liu) to examine best practices for promoting student success and adopt a plan for improving student success in the California Community Colleges. Website has links for Public Participation, Reports and Resources.
On September 28, 2010, Senate Bill 1143 (Liu) was chaptered into law. This legislation, effective January 1, 2011, requires the Board of Governors to establish a task force to examine best practices for promoting student success and adopt a plan for improving student success within the California Community Colleges.
From the RP Group Student Perspectives Research (Year 1, 2011 – 2012), find a full report of students’ perspectives on how “six success factors” contribute to their achievement. Discover discussion questions to stimulate dialog about these findings and students’ suggestions for action by constituent group.
From the RP Group Student Perspectives Research (Year 1, 2011 – 2012), learn about five key themes emerging from this student perspectives research and specific strategies that students suggest may improve their achievement. Find discussion questions to facilitate reflection and planning at the college level.
A web-based collection developed in November 2007 in conjunction with Strengthening Pre-Collegiate Education in Community Colleges (SPECC), a project of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.
Advancing by Degrees: A Framework for Increasing College Completion
April 2010 report that describes a framework of milestones and on-track indicators related to student success in two- and four-year institutions. Uses data from the California Community Colleges and the State University System of Florida.Excerpt: "Research in both two-year and four-year colleges points to the importance of enrolling in and completing college level math early in a student’s college career. Some studies also suggest that early completion of science courses can serve as an indicator of likely success."
- ASCCC Basic Skills Summary Report 2006 to 2009 Academic Senate for California Community Colleges
- Data 101: Guiding Priniciples for Faculty
White Paper by the Academic Senate Executive Committee (Fulks, et al) to help faculty use data to "inform their practice and guide their work in order to improve student interactions, enhance pedagogical strategies, direct program development, . . . create evidence for program review, and provide equitable access and outcomes for our diverse students populations."
Report on the 2010 findings of the Center for Community College Student Engagement. Includes a section on "Strategies to Promote Learning That Matters."
- Lessons Learned from the Basic Skills Initiative (2006-2009) Academic Senate for California Community Colleges
"Listening to Students About Learning" Andrea Conklin Bueschel
- A Matter of Degrees: Promising Practices for Community College Student Success is the first in a series of reports by the Center for Community College Student Engagement exploring 13 promising practices for strengthening community college student engagement and success.
One-Shot Deal? Students’ Perceptions of Assessment and Course Placement in California’s Community Colleges
This report by the educational research organization WestEd focuses on assessment and placement processes, pivotal pieces of this picture because they determine which level of courses students will be placed in when they begin community college. This study had two main purposes. One was to examine and describe the set of policies and practices that shape assessment and placement in California’s community colleges. The other was to hear directly from students—whose voices are crucial yet generally missing in the policy process—about their assessment and placement experiences. We then compared the policies’ supportive intent with the reality of the students’ experiences—as well as with observations from counselors and matriculation officers—to draw conclusions about how the policies and practices may need to be adjusted.
- Promoting Engagement for All Students: The Imperative to Look Within
National Survey of Student Engagement, 2008 Results (NSSE)
- Something's Got to Give: California can’t improve college completions without rethinking developmental education at its community colleges
This 2010 report draws from a recent EdSource research study commissioned by the California Community Colleges Chancellors’ Office (CCCCO). The study provides a deeper understanding of the system’s challenges and opportunities related to the many students who take basic skills or developmental courses at the community colleges.
- State Academic Senate Basic Skills Report (see above)
- Student Success Task Force Final Report: Advancing Student Success in the California Community Colleges.
Student Success Taskforce Report Summary
Teaching Paradigms, Pedagogies and Basic Skills Students
(Research Project), Powerpoint by Lorena G. del Mundo, College of San Mateo