How Outcomes Metrics Can Better Reflect Community College Performance

Oct. 8, 2019
In the U.S. higher education system, community colleges are heavy lifters: while they make up only about a quarter of the nation’s postsecondary institutions, they serve nearly half of all undergraduate students. But when it comes to evaluating the performance of two-year institutions, traditional outcomes metrics can provide an incomplete picture, failing to account for…

Redesigning State Financial Aid to Better Serve Nontraditional Adult Students

Sept. 12, 2016
State financial aid programs are failing to keep pace with today’s changing college-going population, contends a new report from Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success. As a result, many nontraditional adult students are left behind. To better meet the needs of these students, the report recommends prioritizing need-based state aid, making eligibility rules more inclusive…

Connecting State and Institutional Finance Policies for Improved Higher Education Outcomes

July 13, 2016
This paper provides a conceptual framework that examines the interrelationship between state and institutional finance policies, including state appropriations, tuition and financial aid. It explores how state higher education goals can be advanced through outcomes-based funding policies that provide incentives for institutional behavior, and how policies can be designed to maximize student success.

Leveraging Outcomes-Based Funding Policies at the Institutional Level

July 13, 2016
Policymakers are moving to outcomes-based funding in an effort to inspire public higher education institutions to drive the transformative change required to expand access, increase graduation rates and contain costs. For outcomes-based funding to have a significant effect on student outcomes, system and institutional leaders must successfully translate these policies into action. In an effort…

Using Real-Time Labor Market Information to Achieve Better Labor Market Outcomes

July 13, 2016
Understanding complex labor markets including the demand for skills is key to guiding our investments in education and training. This is especially true for community colleges responsible for preparing a significant portion of the nation’s workers. These institutions are being increasingly challenged to better align their programs of study with entire economies undergoing restructuring and…

Structuring State Policy for Student Success

March 10, 2016
This is a time of great challenge and opportunity for American higher education. The challenges are well-established and widely acknowledged: escalating standards for economic competitiveness, coupled with a severe economic downturn and protracted recovery, require broad access to relevant postsecondary education, training and retooling as never before, but stagnant state funding and surging student demand…

Employing Postsecondary Data for Effective State Finance Policymaking

March 10, 2016
Each year, more states are adopting policies to incent and support improvements in postsecondary student success and equitable outcomes through the effective use of quality data. Particularly as the target dates for national higher education attainment goals grow nearer, state economies are in need of more college-educated workers, and budgets continue to be severely constrained,…

Linking Appropriations for the Texas State Technical College System to Student Employment Outcomes

March 10, 2016
When the idea of tying appropriations for the public universities in Texas to performance funding first emerged, there was one exception to the opposition from the higher-education establishment: the state’s technical colleges. The 50-year-old Texas State Technical College System jumped at the opportunity to prove its worth to lawmakers and the public.

Higher Education Outcomes-Based Funding Models and Academic Quality

March 10, 2016
Recent years have seen rapid increases in both the need and demand for higher education, just as the economic downturn has placed increasing pressure on state higher education budgets. These trends and others have converged to inspire state policy- makers, the coordinating and governing boards for higher education, and other stakeholders to consider ways to…

Organizational Learning by Colleges Responding to Performance Funding

March 19, 2015
A working paper from the Community College Research Center identifies and analyzes the “deliberative structures” used by colleges and universities to respond to performance funding demands and the factors that aid or hinder in their success. The paper uses data from telephone interviews with more than 200 college personnel at nine community colleges and nine…
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