ERIC Number: ED380178
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995-Feb
A Longitudinal Study of Learning Communities at LaGuardia Community College.
Tinto, Vincent; Love, Anne Goodsell
The learning communities at New York's LaGuardia Community College consist of groups of students taking two or more classes together and providing each other with social and academic support, while professors integrate class content to broaden understanding. A study undertaken to compare the experience of students in the college's LC programs to students in traditional classes tracked the learning and persistence behaviors of beginning college students over the course of their first academic year. In addition, a qualitative case study was undertaken to determine if collaborative learning strategies represented an effective way to respond to academic needs. Study findings included the following: (1) compared to traditional students, LC students' perceptions of classes, other students, faculty, counselors, campus climate, and their own involvement were generally more positive; (2) LC students earned more credits and had higher grade point averages than traditional students; (3) although LC students had only a slightly higher persistence rate than the comparison students (77.7% versus 75.9%), they were significantly more likely to express an intention to continue in higher education (88.5% versus 77.9%); (4) in general, LC students indicated that group work and peer collaboration was easier and more fun than traditional methods, valued diversity in their communities, and saw broad themes and connections across classes; and (5) they did not, however, tend to reflect on why the positive LC experience was not achieved outside the community. The questionnaires and data tables are appended. (Contains 12 references.) (KP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center on Postsecondary Teaching, Learning, and Assessment, University Park, PA.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A