EDU news curated by Kiosk: Black History Month…and other higher ed news

Black history month: A time for reflection, assessment

From Community College Daily: “In a recent six-year tracking study, Black students had the lowest college completion rate (28%) of any other racial and ethnic group. In this same study, 22% of Black students who started at a community college remained enrolled at the end of six years. This was 6% more than White students and 2% less than Asian students. After accounting for all students, the dropout rate of Black community college students was 50%. This was 15% higher than White students and 25% higher than Asian students.”


Black learners aren’t enrolling or staying in college. A new poll shows why.

From Lumina Foundation: “New numbers for Black Americans eager to improve their lives with college degrees are alarming: Only 34 percent hold degrees, and half graduate four-year colleges within six years. Worse yet, their college enrollment numbers are steeply declining, down another 30,000 this past fall. … But in a concerning trend, the survey found higher reports of discrimination in certain academic programs that are increasingly popular with Black students: While Black learners make up a large share of students in private for-profit schools, one-third say they experience discrimination frequently or occasionally—a much higher portion than at private, not-for-profit schools or public colleges.”


High costs and discrimination: US study details obstacles for Black students

From The Guardian: “The survey also found that Black students in four-year bachelor’s degree programs are more likely to stop coursework than students from other racial and ethnic groups. Black bachelor’s students are twice as likely – 36% to 18% – as students from other groups to have additional responsibilities such as caregiving or full-time work. The survey found that 15% of Black students were caregivers for adult family members or friends, compared to 8% of other students. Eleven per cent of Black students were parents or guardians of children younger than 18, compared with 7% of other students. Twenty per cent of Black students were employed full-time, compared to 11% of other students.”


HBCUs see surge in applications after George Floyd protests, help from Black celebs

From USA Today: “There has been a dramatic recent increase in applications to historically Black colleges and universities — up 30% at some schools. Applications to Morehouse College, a men’s historically Black college in Atlanta, increased 60% in 2020 … Across the street at Spelman College for women, applications jumped to more than 11,000 in 2021, from 4,000 in 2014. … HBCUs have also benefited from partnerships with and investment by major companies and wealthy individuals. Tennis legend Serena Williams and actor Michael B. Jordan collaborated in 2021 on a contest to award $1 million to an HBCU student with an outstanding business plan. In 2020, actor Kevin Hart provided $600,000 in scholarships to 18 qualifying HBCU students.”


In other news…

Class of 2022 left $3.6B in pell grants unclaimed

From Inside Higher Ed: “Using FAFSA completion rates and Pell Grant eligibility estimates, the report found that about 767,000 Pell-eligible high school seniors didn’t complete the application and thus didn’t receive the grant. Nationally, the average Pell Grant award was $4,686 for the 2022–23 academic year; the maximum award was $6,895. ‘Oklahoma, Florida, New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada are the only five states whose FAFSA non-completion percentage and Pell Grant eligibility percentage are over 50%; consequently, these states (and their students) stand to gain substantially in terms of federal financial aid if they can increase FAFSA completion, the report says.’”


Education department hints at possible delay of FAFSA

From Inside Higher Ed: “The new version of the Free Application of Student Aid might not be ready by Oct. 1 … Melanie Storey, deputy director of policy implementation and oversight for the Office of Federal Student Aid, told attendees at the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators’ leadership conference that the agency wouldn’t commit to a launch date this fall, though it is working aggressively toward an Oct. 1 launch. … Legally, the agency has until Jan. 1 to release the application.”


Turnitin announces AI detector with ‘97 per cent accuracy’

From Times Higher Education: “Turnitin will make its artificial intelligence writing detector available ‘as early as April’, claiming it can identify ChatGPT-authored writing 97 per cent of the time. The Silicon Valley-based company will offer the tool alongside its ubiquitous plagiarism checker in a move commentators said could heighten calls for more universities to ban students from using AI.”


Why are students so disengaged?

From Inside Higher Ed: “Undergraduate students are struggling to stay engaged in class—and they believe that material more directly connected to real-life issues could help solve the problem. … 55 percent of undergraduate and 38 percent of graduate students said they struggle to remain interested in their classes. The same proportion of undergraduates and 34 percent of graduate students also said they have trouble retaining the material they learn. … A whopping 81 percent of students also said that it’s important or very important for institutions to incorporate company-led projects to mimic real-world work. Yet only 30 percent of institutions currently offer such projects, according to the report.”


Does ‘flipped learning’ work? A new analysis dives into the research

From EdSurge: “The study considered 173 studies of flipped learning, as well as 46 previous meta-analyses of the approach … ’The current levels of enthusiasm for flipped learning are not commensurate with and far exceed the vast variability of scientific evidence in its favor,’ the paper argues. In fact, the authors made the surprising conclusion that many instances of flipped learning involve more time spent on passive learning than the traditional lecture model, because some professors both assign short video lectures and spend some time in class lecturing to prepare for class activities. As the authors put it: ‘Indeed, it seems that implementations of flipped learning perpetuate the things they claim to reduce, that is, passive learning.’”


US tests new school-university partnerships

From Times Higher Education: “Under a method being tried across several states, small numbers of students who have completed their high school requirements are being guided into beginning their college careers without collecting their graduation diploma. That lets them remain officially part of their high school communities – keeping them directly connected to guidance counsellors – while they start attending two-year or four-year universities. … One of the most ambitious adaptions of that concept is the network of 130 Cooperative Innovative High Schools in North Carolina, where students try to complete as much as two years of college-level coursework while earning their high-school diplomas.”


Tuition revenue has fallen at 61% of colleges during the pandemic

From The Chronicle of Higher Education: “More than seven out of 10 community colleges saw that (tuition) source of revenue drop from 2019 to 2021, while four-year institutions fared slightly better: 60 percent of public colleges and 58 percent of private colleges experienced drops in their net-tuition revenue. … Institutions that were more selective in their admissions weren’t spared. The majority — 55 percent — of institutions defined as more selective by the Carnegie classifications saw a negative change in revenue from tuition, which was not much better than the 59 percent of inclusive institutions reporting net-tuition revenue declines. Sixty-two percent of selective institutions experienced drops.”



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