Bevill State Community College is focused on student success. It is a top priority of the College to encourage students to prepare for their college coursework and to maximize their potential for academic success. This focus led to the development of the new Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), TIPS (Transforming Instructional Programs for Success).
Through multiple meetings, discussions, and surveys the College garnered broad-based input from institutional constituents, including faculty, staff, students, and community representatives regarding identifying topics and strategies to improve student learning and success. From this collection of data three primary instructional strategies emerged that needed to be accomplished to increase the success rate of Bevill State students.
First, the College will re-design and standardize the freshmen orientation course curriculum beginning in the Spring semester of 2020 to include study strategies associated with student success. Orientation faculty will meet to determine a standardized list of study strategies and topics (i.e., test-taking skills, note-taking, time management, etc.) to be covered in every orientation course as well as a standardized grading scale.
In conjunction with the re-design of the freshmen orientation course, the College will implement surveys and focus groups to obtain formative data. The College will assess perceptions of learning and obtain feedback from students regarding the new ongoing strategies. The primary emphasis on this data will be to determine whether or not the new teaching strategies are correlated with student learning and persistence and subsequently to determine any additions or changes which we need to be made to the new coursework.
The second strategy implemented will be the development of unit objectives for all of the College’s top ten enrollment courses to provide clear expectations for students of what they will be able to do (explain, discuss, state, list, etc.), upon completion of each unit covered in the course. Unit objectives can help students differentiate what to study which can enhance learning and ultimately yield increased and favorable results in the areas of class attendance, student satisfaction, and course performance.
Finally, instructor-made lecture videos for the selected courses will be provided to students. Lecture videos provide a 24/7 resource for students in their studies. These videos will be 10-15 minutes in length and should be linked to the unit objectives. Research suggests lecture videos often improve student perceptions of their learning and contribute to student success by providing students with access to self-paced content. In addition, recorded videos free class time to utilize problem solving and application activities.
Both the standardized unit objectives and the lecture video strategies will be implemented incrementally in different semesters over the timeline of the QEP.