Taking information gleaned from institutional leaders across the country,a new report from the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) highlights promising practices for institutions looking to use postsecondary data to improve student outcomes. Leading With Data: How Senior Institution and System Leaders Use Postsecondary Data to Promote Student Success features compelling examples of institutional leaders who already are using postsecondary data effectively.
The brief also provides four recommendations that institutional leaders can leverage to use data in more impactful ways on their campuses:
- Establish a culture of data use for institutional improvement
- Distribute data responsibilities across campus offices
- Reach beyond campus boundaries to find and use data
- Participate in data policy conversations at the national level
At California State University - Fullerton (CSUF), for example, the provost oversees the strategic use of a data warehouse that pulls data from across campus to ensure that students are on the right path to graduation. Advisors are able to identify students who might be falling behind on requirements and proactively address their challenges to make sure they find success at CSUF.
"This brief lifts up the important voices of chancellors, presidents, provosts, and other leaders who are working on the ground to promote student success-focused, action-oriented data use," said Dr. Michelle Asha Cooper, president of IHEP. "Institutions that are still developing a data-driven culture can learn from senior institutional leaders who are already using data to inform their daily and long-term decision making processes."
Leading With Data is the product of interviews with the Senior Institutional Leadership Council (SILC), a group of university presidents and senior level administrators from across the nation. IHEP, with help from New America, formed SILC in the fall of 2015 as a way to learn more about how institutional champions are successfully using data to improve student outcomes and share those key lessons broadly.
Leading with Data was researched and written by Jamey Rorison, Ph.D., senior research analyst, and Mamie Voight, vice president of policy research.