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ERIC Number: ED541651
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 25
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 13
Connection by Design: Students' Perceptions of Their Community College Experiences
Nodine, Thad; Jaeger, Laura; Venezia, Andrea; Bracco, Kathy Reeves
Across focus groups consisting of current and former community college students in four states (Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas), a consistent message resounded: Students want to be more connected to their colleges, from the moment they enter until the day they complete their studies. They want to feel more connected to faculty, staff, and peers. They want to be more engaged by their classes and to feel more supported by services they receive. And they want to see colleges be more deliberate in ensuring those connections. "Connection by Design" is the second of two reports based on student focus group discussions conducted in spring 2012 by staff from WestEd and Public Agenda. It supports the findings from the first report, Student Voices on the Higher Education Pathway (Public Agenda & WestEd, 2012), about college students' desire to receive transparent, accessible, accurate, and timely information leading up to and during their college experiences. In addition, it analyzes students' ideas about their community college experiences as they related to several strategies for increasing college completion rates. The focus groups discussed information delivery methods and student supports, including orientation, student success courses, advising, and alert systems; instructional services, including developmental education and entry into a program of study; and career preparation and exploration. Overall, students understand the pros and cons of choosing educational goals and entering into a program of study soon after starting college versus exploring a variety of options for one or more years. Most wish that their college had provided them with more structured opportunities to explore their options. (Contains 3 footnotes.)
WestEd. 730 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA 94107-1242. Tel: 877-493-7833; Tel: 415-565-3000; Fax: 415-565-3012; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: WestEd; Public Agenda
Identifiers - Location: Florida; North Carolina; Ohio; Texas