Minnesota

Brief

Early Lessons from SUCCESS

January, 2022

MDRC’s Scaling Up College Completion Efforts for Student Success (SUCCESS) aims to help more low-income students and students of color graduate by combining proven components into an integrated three-year program. This brief describes the model, the study, and adaptations to the COVID-19 pandemic, and offers some early findings.

Brief
January, 2022
Dan Cullinan, Elizabeth Kopko

Two experimental studies examined multiple measures assessment (MMA), in which colleges use alternative measures (like high school GPA) rather than just standardized test scores, to assign students to developmental or college-level courses. Students placed using MMA were more likely to complete college-level courses. This brief offers recommendations for other colleges.

Report

Three-Semester Findings from an Experimental Study of Multiple Measures Assessment and Placement

December, 2021

Some students are referred into developmental (or remedial) education inappropriately when placed using only standardized placement tests. When multiple measures assessment was used, students in Minnesota and Wisconsin were more likely to enroll and pass college-level math and English courses within three semesters. The additional cost of this alternative assessment averaged $33 per student.

Brief

Partnering with Young People to Study Persistence and Engagement in the Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential Initiative

July, 2021

Participatory research—including members of a group being studied—recognizes that people closest to a problem have unique perspectives and knowledge. MDRC collaborated with a group of youth fellows in the Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential project, and found that this approach can lead to better evaluation results.

Brief

Scaling Up Postsecondary Student Success Strategies

June, 2021
Tiffany Morton, Camielle Headlam, Briah Spencer

Minnesota’s two-year project to improve student success and degree attainment focused on improved course placement methods, communications about satisfactory academic progress and policies, and comprehensive student support programs. A major lesson in this brief: Programs that show significant results must be implemented widely to change student outcomes meaningfully.

MDRC ’s Applying the Evidence project is a partnership with the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system (Minnesota State) to expand the implementation of evidence-based student success strategies across the Minnesota State system, which currently includes 30 community colleges and seven universities.

In partnership with system-level leaders from...

Brief

What Colleges Need to Know About Multiple Measures Assessments

February, 2021

Colleges often use standardized testing to determine whether incoming students need developmental courses. But those tests do not predict students’ college readiness accurately. This brief explains how the use of alternative multiple measures can improve placement decisions, increase college-level course pass rates, and boost progress toward graduation.

Report

Impact Findings From an Evaluation of a Multiple Measures Assessment Strategy

October, 2020
Elisabeth A. Barnett, Elizabeth Kopko, Dan Cullinan, Clive Belfield

A random assignment evaluation at seven State University of New York campuses finds that using multiple measures assessments to determine placement in remedial education led to more students being placed in college-level courses, where they did better than their peers who were placed in remedial classes.

Issue Focus

How Place-Based Employment Programs like Jobs Plus Can Help During the COVID-19 Pandemic

July, 2020

Employment programs situated within public housing developments are facing multiple challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With routine operations disrupted by shelter-in-place orders, programs like Jobs Plus can find creative ways to keep their doors open and their clients engaged.

Issue Focus

Three Insights from Research

June, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic means community colleges cannot administer in-person tests to determine whether students must take developmental (remedial) courses. But some colleges were already using multiple pieces of information for course placement, rather than a single test score. This brief offers three relevant insights from research on these placement systems.

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