An intervention to improve outcomes for under-resourced students: The case of Central Piedmont Community College

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Amy E. Bruining (Creator)
Dena K. Shonts (Creator)
Western Carolina University (WCU )
Web Site:
Kofi Lomotey

Abstract: Under-resourced community college students struggle to meet their basic needs, often facing food and housing insecurities, all while trying to focus on their studies. A handful of institutions have increased the graduation rates of their under-resourced student populations by creating holistic models that provide a variety of financial, academic, and non-academic support. This improvement initiative embedded academic tutors and a connection to community basic needs support resources into targeted eight-week compressed math sections. Instructors in the study sections encouraged students to complete the online benefits screener at the College’s Single Stop Office, which served as the connection to institutional and community resources that can support their basic needs (i.e., food pantries, assistance with childcare, utilities). In addition, a math tutor from the College’s Academic Learning Center was embedded in the course. The tutor proactively reached out to students and offered individual and group tutoring sessions. In this disquisition we evaluate the impact of embedding academic and non-academic supports into eight-week sections of targeted math courses on student success and retention to the next term of under-resourced students at Central Piedmont Community College. We used the Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycle as a framework for inquiry (Langley et al., 2009). Through inductive and deductive inquiry, PDSA cycles enable researchers to guide continuous improvement through repeated phases of inquiry, strategic implementation, data collection, and amended future action based on results (Langley et al., 2009)

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2022
Academic Support, Basic Needs Support, Community College Completion, Completion, Holistic Support, Under-Resourced Students
Low-income students
Academic achievement
Community colleges
Central Piedmont Community College (Charlotte, N.C.)
Continuous improvement process

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