Bloomington Assessment and Research faculty and staff honored for paper

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- A scholarly paper by faculty and staff in the Indiana University Bloomington Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education has been recognized by the Association for Institutional Research with one of 10 Charles F. Elton Best Paper Awards for 2014.

The paper, titled "Using NSSE to Understand Student Success: A Multi-Year Analysis," was written by personnel at the Bloomington Research and Assessment office: Stefano Fiorini, lead research management analyst; Tao Liu, graduate research assistant; and Linda Shepard and Judith Ouimet, senior assistant vice provosts. It was published in the Proceedings of the 10th National Symposium on Student Retention, Louisville, Ky.

The focus of this paper is research using the National Survey of Student Engagement responses to predict student retention, academic performance, time to degree and on-time graduation. The analysis is based on IU Bloomington first-year students and seniors who completed the survey administered from 2006-2012.

Student background and pre-college information, financial aid, previous college academic performance, and NSSE Benchmarks and individual items were used to predict student academic success. Results show that student characteristics and earlier achievement predict college success while higher levels of student engagement are also marginally significant.

"This award acknowledges the exceptional work of our colleagues at Bloomington Assessment and Research," said Dennis Groth, vice provost for undergraduate education at IU Bloomington. "Through their research, we gain an understanding of student success here at Indiana University, which also benefits institutions across the nation."

The Charles F. Elton Best Paper Award honors scholarship that exemplifies the standards of excellence established by the award's namesake. Out of 521 proposals, only 10 were named the best papers for 2014.

"Selection for this award is a high honor, achieved only through two independent peer review processes," said Randy L. Swing, executive director of the Association for Institutional Research. "Each recipient was selected to present the research at the AIR annual conference and the resulting manuscript was subsequently accepted for publication through a recognized independent peer review."

The Bloomington Assessment and Research office supports faculty, programs, campus initiatives and the student experience by providing research and analyses for data-driven decisions and continuous improvement.

The Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education at Indiana University Bloomington supports a broad range of activities that promote innovation and enrichment in the curriculum, and leads campus-wide programs and initiatives in support of outstanding, academic experiences for all undergraduates.