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ERIC Number: ED572783
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Feb
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Early Momentum Metrics: Why They Matter for Higher Education Reform. CCRC Research Brief. Number 65
Jenkins, Davis; Bailey, Thomas
Community College Research Center, Teachers College, Columbia University
In this brief, the authors propose three measures of "early momentum" for two reasons: Research is beginning to show that these near-term metrics predict long-term success, and the metrics focus attention on initial conditions at colleges that are particularly important for solidifying the foundation for student success. While these measures are valuable individually, as a group they give a better picture of the impact of reforms on students, and thus are more valuable if used together. These measures include: (1) Credit momentum--defined as attempting at least 15 semester credits in the first term or at least 30 semester credits in the first academic year; (2) Gateway momentum--defined as taking and passing "pathway-appropriate" college-level math and college-level English in the first academic year; and (3) Program momentum--defined as taking and passing at least nine semester credits (three courses) in the student's field of study in the first academic year. In this report, the authors present evidence that these metrics predict long-term success and then discuss how they can help focus reforms on the early foundations of student success.
Community College Research Center. Available from: CCRC Publications. Teachers College, Columbia University, 525 West 120th Street Box 174, New York, NY 10027. Tel: 212-678-3091; Fax: 212-678-3699; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Authoring Institution: Columbia University, Community College Research Center
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee; Florida; Washington
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study