The Impact of Study Abroad on Retention and Success in College: CCC SOAR Project Gary Rhodes, Ph.D., Director Center for Global Education UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies Don Rubin, Ph.D., Professor University of Georgia Washington DC September 2013
About the Center for Global Ed. The Center for Global Education promotes international education to foster cross-cultural awareness, cooperation and understanding. Living and working effectively in a global society requires learning with an international perspective. Established in 1998 at USC, moved to LMU to 2004. Previous funding from FIPSE Comprehensive Program – U.S. Department of Education (USEd). Moved to UCLA in 2010 with International Research and Studies Program Grant (USEd). Funded through grants, donations, sponsorships, and institutional support.
Resources Ce n t e r • SAFETI Clearinghouse • Student Study Abroad Safety Handbooks • PLATO Project (Study Abroad) • PLUS Project (International Students) • CCC SOAR (Community College) • Other Resource and Research Resources
Importance of Study Abroad US Secretary of State “I can think of no more valuable asset to our country than the friendship of future world leaders who were educated here…International education prepares our citizens to live, work, and compete in the global economy, and promotes tolerance and the reduction of conflict.” US Secretary of Education “Complex Global Interactions, once reserved for the diplomatic corps, are today the stuff of everyday business deals and cultural exchanges. If we expect students to navigate international waters, we need to give them an international education that meets the highest standards.” US President “…We must also reaffirm our commitment to promote educational opportunities that enable American students to study abroad, and to encourage international students to take part in our educational system.” (statements from US International Education Week) US Congress: 2006: The Year of Study Abroad Lincoln Commission – Simon Study Abroad Act Funding to Have 1 Million Students Abroad (by 2017)
IIE Open Doors US Study Abroad Data Growth – 1996/7 – 2010/11 2010/11 273,996 2009/10 270,604 2008/09 260,327 2007/08 262,416 2006/07 241,791 2005/06 223,534 2004/05 205,983 2000/01 154,618 1998/99 129,770 1996/97 99,448
Comparative Data on Race and Ethnicity in Education Abroad(by David Comp, Modified from Presentation)
Study Abroad Outcomes Research Various Instruments • IDI (the Intercultural Development Inventory) • GPI (Global Perspectives Inventory) • CCAI (the Cross-Cultural Adaptability Inventory) • OPI (the oral proficiency interview) • SOPI (the simulated oral proficiency interview), • BEVI (the Beliefs, Events and Values Inventory) • SAGE: The Beyond Immediate Impact: Study Abroad for Global Engagement (SAGE) project, based at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, uses an instrument called the Global Engagement Survey • GLOSSARI - International Learning Outcomes (ILO)
University of Minnesota (systemwide) • In a study recently completed by the University of Minnesota, data showed that of the Fall 1999 and Fall 2000 freshmen, only about 50% of those who did not study abroad graduated in five years, where over 85% of those who studied abroad graduated in five years. Significant differences were apparent in both the four and six year graduation rates as well.
University of Minnesota (Twin Cities) Of Fall 2003 freshmen, 64.5% of those who studied abroad graduated by their 4th year, compared to 41.0% among non-study abroad students. 33.3% of this cohort dropped out by the 4th year compared to only 6.0% of those who studied abroad.
Indiana University • Kathleen Sideli, Associate VP for Overseas Study at Indiana University: • The IU data show 95.3% of students who study abroad (using the entering cohort from 1999) graduated within 6 years as compared to 68.5 % for the students who did not study abroad. • Students who participate in one or more overseas study courses by the end of their fourth year of college have significantly higher cumulative grade point averages than non-participants, even after accounting for prior academic achievement and college major.
Kuh Research Kuh, G. D. (2008). High-Impact Educational Practices: What They Are, Who Has Access to Them, and Why They Matter. Washington, DC: American Association of Colleges and Universities.
Univ.of Connecticut 2012 6 Year Graduation Rates
UT Austin • Supporting four-year graduation rates • UT study abroad participants are more likely to graduate and experience a shorter than average time-to-degree than non-participants (Hamir, 2011) • Influencing Retention • Empirical research on the UT Austin student population demonstrates academically at-risk students stand to benefit the most from study abroad • Study abroad representative on campus-wide retention committee
California Community College Student Outcomes Abroad Research Project: CCC SOAR • To research the impact of study abroad on students at California Community Colleges, including student international learning outcomes and impact on retention, success, transfer, and success after community college study, with a special focus on Hispanic students
Community colleges give access to minority groups and non-traditional students, who often are first-generation college attendees, with 25% or more of all high school graduates of color enrolling in community colleges as a way to begin their foray into higher education (Edsource, 2008)
CCC SOAR • Focus Group in London, United Kingdom • California Community College Students responses about this being the first opportunity for them to: • Interact Outside Class with Students • Interact Outside Class with Faculty • Be in a Living/Learning Community • Go Regularly to Class • Plan for Finishing CC Classes to Transfer
Our Partners We have a diverse California community college base we will be working with to collect data, Research Support by RP Group Also collaborating with national and regional partners, including HACU, NAFEO, COE, AACC, UC EAP, CSU IP We are working with the developers of the GLOSSARI Project, which includes the International Learning Outcomes (ILO) Survey Instrument created by our partners at the Georgia’s Public Higher Education System
Quantitative Data This data includes 2,742 study abroad programs for students from 19 California colleges (17 Districts) with over 15,216 enrollments by over 14,216 individual students. Some students had multiple enrollments in study abroad programs.
Student Characteristics Gender 69% Female 31% Male Ethnicity 60% White 16% Latino 7% Asian 17% Other
Student Characteristics Education Goal 60% Transfer or Degree 21% Undecided 11% Personal Development 7% Career Related 3% Remediation
Student Characteristics Education Level 78% High school graduates 15% College graduates 7% Still in high school or unknown Age Average (mean) is 27 years old - Median Age is 20 years old (half 20 or younger, half over 20) 3% are under 18 4% are 65 or older
Preliminary Findings • Unadjusted comparison of outcomes show study abroad students have higher outcomes on: • retention, unit attainment, and GPA • degree earning • transfer level English and math completion and transfer • Preliminary regressions controlling for some of these differences are showing: • Study abroad students still have higher outcomes, but • Outcome differences using regression adjusted outcomes (marginal means) are not as great as with unadjusted outcomes
Preliminary Control Variables • Ethnicity • Gender • Age at term • Flag for high school graduate • Flag for learning disability • Flag for Extended Opportunities Programs and Services (EOPS) • Flag for received Board of Governor’s Grant (low income) • Degree applicable units attempted in first term • GPA in first term • Flag for transfer/award related goal in first term • Level of first college English level ( no English, remedial English, transfer English) • Level of first college math level ( no math, remedial math, transfer math) • Mean unit load in primary terms • Year of enrollment (cohort effect) • College area income-education index, higher values indicate higher ed levels and/or income • Percent of community over the age of 30 • Student average academic performance index based on K-12 test scores • Distance to nearest University of California • Distance to nearest California State University
Regression Marginal Means • Used to examine relative effect of a treatment variable such as participation in study abroad • Outcome estimates are made using the mean value for each control variable • The value of each marginal mean should not be interpreted directly e.g. they are not transfer or graduation rates • The differences between marginal means suggest whether or not the treatment variable may be contributing to these differences
Domestic Comparison A set of 476,708 first-time college students who had the same characteristics and who showed a credit enrollment that was not concurrent with high school enrollment but did not have a record of an earned college-level degree or certificate were tracked from Fall 2004 to Fall 2009 in three-year sequences. An attempt was made to statistically control for differences in student background characteristics using Poisson regression and multiple regression. Regression techniques compared the cohort on key outcomes such as year-to-year retention, curricular progression, completion of transfer level English and math, degree and certificate attainment, and transfer. Based on this methodology, we found that many results were statistically significant.
Don Rubin GLOSSARI