One Million Degrees Highlights from the Randomized Controlled Trial Presentation to the Illinois Board of Higher Education September 10, 2019
Interim findings show OMD is encouraging college enrollment and persistence • Participating in the One Million Degrees program led to large and statistically significant increases in: • Enrollment in college • Enrolling with a full-time courseload • Persisting by enrolling in both fall and spring • Persisting full-time by enrolling in both fall and spring • Participating in OMD also leads to significant increases in credits attempted and credits earned • The impacts are largest for scholars who are recruited to enroll in the program right after high school
Community colleges can be engines of social mobility, but many students face barriers • Open-access and affordable; attractive to many first-generation, low-income, and non-traditional students • Earning an associate’s degree can increase a family’s lifetime earnings by 30% • While completion rates are rising, two thirds of aspiring community college students will not finish their degree within three years • Interventions targeting a single barrier facing students have not been as successful as wraparound models with proactive advising Sources: City Colleges, 2018; Long, 2014; Matorell & McFarlain, 2011; Scrivener & Weiss, 2009; Evans, Kearney, Perry, & Sullivan, 2017; Scrivener et al. 2015.
OMD provides comprehensive and targeted support to low-income two-year college students
OMD accelerates scholars’ progress and mitigates challenges on their path to a degree ACCELERATORS an asset-based approach, building social capital, vision, and self-efficacy Dedicated volunteer coaches (working or retired professionals) help build and bridge social capital and offer windows into the professional world Monthly professional development workshops build skills and networks for the future and a support community for the college experience Program expectations on the Do Your PART rubric promote leadership, communication, and engagement Enrichment grants defray the costs of licensure exams, honor society fees, equipment, and conferences The OMD Scholar Journey through community college Graduation and transition to next steps • Transition from high school Recruitment outreach promoting OMD as a community of support and an opportunity to belong inspires action; regular nudging and accountability helps students get through the enrollment and financial aid process Full-time, dedicated success coaches closely track course completion, GPA, registration, financial aid, and overall attendance and engagement Tutors meet weekly with students who are struggling in their courses The Do Your PART rubric provides clarity of expectations, transparency around performance, and prompts specific goals for improvement Performance-based financial incentives provide needed funding for books, childcare, transportation MITIGATORS a highly supportive, authentically caring approach addressing barriers
OMD has changed my expectations for myself by showing me that I can do a lot more than I thought I could. Every student has the potential to be whatever they want to be, they just don’t see it.What One Million Degrees does is help them see it by surrounding them with other students who also feel the same way and bringing out the best in them…and showing them that they could do whatever they want to do.”- Luis, current OMD Scholar at Harold Washington College “
We are able to measure the causal effect of OMD through a randomized controlled trial TOTAL ELIGIBLEPOPULATION(OMD Applicants) TREATMENT (OMD Scholars) AND CONTROL GROUPS MEASURING OUTCOMES Outcomes, such as enrollment, persistence, and graduation, are tracked among both groups in order to understand the impact of OMD. There are more students eligible for OMD than there are program slots. Eligible applicants are randomly assigned to receive the program or not.
We have randomized several cohorts of students with a long-term focus on graduation or transfer Cohort 1 Primary Outcomes of Interest • Three-year graduation OR enrollment in Bachelor program Secondary Outcomes of Interest • Predictors of graduation: enrollment, full-time enrollment, rate of persistence, credits earned, use of college services, and GPA • Graduation from a Bachelor’s Degree program • Labor market outcomes (e.g., employment and wages) Spring 2016 1,452 applicants Cohort 2 Spring 2017 2,822 applicants We prioritize using administrative data to analyze outcomes for both control and treatment group applicants
OMD applicants are predominantly students of color, many of whom are first-gen & Pell-eligible
Approximately one-third of students offered a spot in OMD took up the offer to join the program Since take-up was imperfect, we share estimates using two different measures: 34% take-up ITT(“Policy Impact”) • ITT Definition: The average effect among all applicants who were offered a spot in OMD • Policy impact: What would be the effect of offering the program to more students? TOT(“Program Impact”) • TOT Definition: The average effect among those who actually enrolled in OMD, and those who would have enrolled if offered a spot • Program impact: What is the effect of the program for those that are served?
OMD has a positive effect on enrolling in college For students offered OMD… For students participating in OMD… 23% increase** 27% increase** 7% increase** 9% increase*** N = 4,257 * p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001 Data source: National Student Clearinghouse
OMD also has a strong effect on enrolling with a full-time courseload For students offered OMD… For students participating in OMD… 35% increase*** 35% increase*** 13% increase*** 13% increase*** N = 4,257 * p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001 Data source: National Student Clearinghouse
OMD also has a positive effect on both persistence and persisting full-time For students offered OMD… For students participating in OMD… 35% increase*** 11% increase*** 16% increase*** N = 4,257. Persistence is defined as enrolling in both fall and spring semester during the school year. Full-time persistence is defined as enrolling both semesters with a full-time course load. Data source: National Student Clearinghouse * p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001
OMD applicants include graduating high school seniors and current community college students • When recruiting the second study cohort, OMD significantly increased outreach to high schools • Interested students applied to the program in spring of their senior year • The majority of the study sample (60%) were high school seniors at time of application • This allows us to examine the impact of the program on high school applicants specifically
The offer of a spot in OMD has a similar effect across the two groups 7% increase* 11% increase** 13% increase** 14% increase*** 8% increase† 16% increase** 11% increase† 16% increase** 19% increase*** N =1,723 N = 2,534 Data source: National Student Clearinghouse
The effect for participants, however, is significantly larger for high school students 73% increase*** 14% increase* 92% increase** 100% increase*** 82% increase** 15% increase† 85% increase*** 15% increase† 104% increase*** 21% increase† N = 2,534 N =1,723 Data source: National Student Clearinghouse
We find that OMD is incentivizing HS students to attend college who may not have attended at all • When looking at college enrollment patterns for high school applicants, we find that about one-third did not enroll in any college in the fall following their application • For students who received an offer to join OMD, they were more likely to enroll in the school indicated on their application (City College or Harper) • A small share of students who received the OMD offer appear to have switched from another college to an OMD-college N = 2534 Source: National Student Clearinghouse
Evidence is building that holistic supports improve outcomes for CC students • Common elements of successful programs: • Financial support, whether access to an emergency fund, reduced-price tuition, or performance-based stipends • Reliable interpersonal support, whether structured mentoring, coaching, or individualized advising • Technology and data infrastructure to support staff with managing students’ needs and right-sizing • Concerted efforts to cultivate a sense of belonging and community
We are engaging with research and educational peers to inform future analyses and replication • We have presented campus-level results with CCC’s Chancellor, Provost, and college presidents • We also shared high school findings with CPS leadership • We will be presenting at several national conferences • We continue to engage external peers to understand the opportunities and challenges associated with scaling
The study will continue through 2023, with long-term analyses on graduation and employment 2022 2023 2021 2020 2017 2018 2017 2016 2019 Cohort 1 in school Fall 2016 – Spring 2019 Fall 2017 – Spring 2020 Cohort 2 in school Cohort 3 in school Fall 2018 – Spring 2021 Winter ‘20 C1 graduation analyses completed Winter ‘21 C2 graduation analyses completed Winter ‘22 C3 and combined cohort graduation analyses completed Fall 2019 – Fall 2021 C1 enters labor market or four-year institutions C2 enters labor market or four-year institutions Fall 2020 – Fall 2022 C2 enters labor market or four-year institutions Fall 2021 – Fall 2023 Labor market outcomes (dependent on IDES data acquisition) Spring 2020 +
The Poverty Lab works to expand economic opportunity for residents of all communities Our approach seeks to co-generateevidence with public and non-profit partners Our work cuts across traditional policy domains TEST The most promising policies and programs IDENTIFY Promising strategies to support upward mobility SCALE UP The most effective and cost-efficient policies and programs Household Finance HOMELESSNESS College Access and Success Workforce development