A Look at The ABCs of Transforming Education
The Must-Do’s Required to Make a Meaningful Difference for Students
The past several months have both created challenges and revealed opportunities for improving—even transforming—education. Lessons learned during the pandemic have prompted changes in how, and where, education is delivered, how teachers teach, how students learn, and the role of parents in the educational process.
Educators and others now have a plethora of insights and experiences to draw from as they look toward the future. Education is ripe for change at all levels.
A recent article in The Daily Sentinel by Abel A. Chávez, Vice President for Enrollment and Student Success at Western Colorado University, offered a look at some important “ABCs” for transforming education. Reviewed through a higher education lens, he points out that these ABCs offer “a conceptually transferrable framework for elementary, middle, high school, and K-20.”
A Stands for Access and Affordability
Without access to education that is affordable, learning obviously won’t occur. The two are integrally entwined. While options exist to help address affordability for students—like FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), this article points out that the complexity of the process causes many students to not even attempt to apply for these funds.
Eliminating barriers to both access and affordability are critical for ensuring success for students in the future.
B Means Blended Learning
Experiences during COVID-19 have taught us that not only can education be provided virtually but also offers opportunities that can be leveraged into the future. Students today learn differently than those of older generations. Widespread access to devices like smartphones provide an always-on learning environment that can be flexible to meet learner needs and preferences.
Both learners and instructors need to be involved in the process of creating and implementing blended learning options that meet the needs of all.
C Represents Completion
The ability to complete degree programs boosts outcomes related not only to education but also to health, poverty, and even civic participation, Chávez points out in the article.
According to National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, the national six-year completion rate has reached a plateau, with the smallest increase seen over the last five years of 0.3 percentage posts leading to a 60.1% completion rate. In addition, 36 million students around the country now have some college, but no degree.
To discuss how we can collaborate to support your institution and your goals, contact the Research Center.