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Georgia Highlands College Campus Plan Update 2015

Institutional Mission and Student Body Profile 

Georgia Highlands College (GHC) is a state college of the University System of Georgia (USG) with an access mission and limited baccalaureate degrees. The college’s purpose is to provide access to a teaching and learning environment that prepares students to thrive in a global society. The mission of GHC is to provide access to excellent educational opportunities for the intellectual, cultural and physical development of a diverse population through pre-baccalaureate associate degree transfer programs, career associate degree programs, and targeted baccalaureate degree programs that meet the economic development needs of the region.

The college had been seeing approximately 3% enrollment growth through Fall 2011 with 5500 students. In Fall 2013, GHC enrolled 5492 students. Fall-to-fall enrollment remained essentially flat until Fall 2014 when enrollment declined by 2.3% to 5365 students.  For Fall 2015, enrollment was up 7% to 5748 students.

Demographics for the GHC student body as of Fall 2014 are shown below.






Georgia Residents




Full or Part Time


Full Time




Part Time


Black or African American





Average Student Age

23.7 years



All Adult Learners (25+)


Financial Aid

First Time Adult Learners (25+)

3.47% of new

Percent receiving some aid



Pell awardees




HOPE awardees, all categories


Percent of student body


GHC’s key priorities are directly tied to the student body as described by the demographics and the access mission of the college.  The focus is on goals that relate to traditionally underserved students, including adults, veterans, lower-income students, and lower-prepared students. GHC’s mission is to assist students to succeed, whether that be in a career with one of GHC’s career programs (Nursing, Dental Hygiene, Human Service) or with a transfer associate’s degree on the way to a bachelor’s degree at a different institution. These priorities are reflected in GHC’s selected goals for Complete College Georgia.

For instance, in Fall 2014, 49% of GHC’s incoming freshmen required some form of remediation. That is a typical percentage for the institution, so finding ways to track and guide students through remedial work is key to assisting the students in achieving success. GHC has been working towards the completed adoption of new remedial strategies for four years, since the concepts were introduced large-scale within the USG. GHC’s pattern of early adoption is evidenced by the college’s piloting in the past several years of the emporium model, co-requisite remediation, and STEM versus Non-STEM paths for math Learning Support. Even though colleges are not required to adopt the current recommendations to change Learning Support regulations until Fall 2015, GHC was among five institutions that brought the recommendations fully to scale a year early in Fall 2014. For GHC, “at scale” means that all Learning Support sections provided by the institution were in the new formats, no more READ 0099, ENGL 0099, MATH 0097, or MATH 0099 sections.

Institutional Completion Goals and Strategies


Complete College Goal

High Impact Strategy

1: Increase the number of undergraduate degrees awarded by USG institutions.

- Target increases in completion for students traditionally underserved in post-secondary education. Tracking retention and graduation for at-risk populations with interventions, such as African-American males (AAMI program), joint enrolled students, non-traditional students (Adult Concierge Initiative, covered in more detail in Goal 4), and Learning Support students (covered in more detail in Goal 7).

Additional strategy: Adopt targeted baccalaureate programs that meet local economic development needs.  First set of graduates from fully online RN-to-BSN program in Spring 2015; first enrollment in fully online Bachelor in Dental Hygiene completion program in Summer 2015.

4:  Provide intentional advising to keep students on track to graduate.

- Establish criteria for identifying students who may need special interventions in the semester (e.g., lack of attendance, poor performance on early assignments). Degreeworks; Early Bird Advising (EBA); Early Warning Program (EWP); Adult Concierge Initiative.

- Ensure that students who meet off-track criteria receive timely and targeted advising intervention. Interventions resulting from Adult Concierge Initiative and EWP.

5:  Award degrees to students who may have already met requirements for associate degrees via courses taken at one or more institutions.

- Eliminate graduation application fees for associate degrees. Done.

- Automatically conduct degree audits of all students with 60 or more credit hours at associate degree institutions to see whether they have met requirements for degrees. Regular review of credit hours per student to identify those who have gained 90% or more of the appropriate credits toward a degree but have not petitioned for graduation; auto award for those who have correct credits; contact and advice for those who are lacking a few credits; reverse transfer awards.

- Publicize the idea of degree completion via “reverse transfer” within the institution and locally. First step complete: posters at all sites of the college.

7:  Increase the likelihood of degree completion by transforming the way that remediation is accomplished.

Built on prior work in this area by joining four other USG institutions in the “vanguard” group fully at scale with new remedial methods in Fall 2014, a year ahead of USG’s implementation schedule (all Learning Support sections taught in the new formats); pursuing all high impact strategies for this goal; assessment of success in gateway and follow on courses and retention; analysis of outcomes against comparable Learning Support students in Fall 2009. 

- Enroll most students in need of remediation in gateway collegiate courses in English and mathematics, with corequisite Learning Support

- Combine remediation in English and reading. Done and at scale.

- Ensure that all remediation is targeted toward supporting students in the skills they need to pass the collegiate course. Implemented and at scale.

- End the practice of requiring students to withdraw from all collegiate courses when they withdraw from Learning Support courses. Done and at scale.

- Students have unlimited “attempts” to complete corequisite remediation. Done and at scale. 

8:  Restructure instructional delivery to support educational excellence and student success.

- Expand completely online opportunities. Continued expansion of GHC’s online offerings including whole AS and AA degrees starting in Spring 2015; rejoined eCore effective Spring 2015; analyses of student success in online classes comparable to those of eCore

Summary of Goals, High-Impact Strategies and Activities



1. Increase the number of undergraduate degrees awarded by USG institutions

High-impact strategy

Target increases in completion for students traditionally underserved in post-secondary education.  Additionally, provide targeted baccalaureate programs that meet local economic development needs in the region.

Summary of Activities

One key focus area for Georgia Highlands has been retention, progression, and graduation for members of its African American Male Initiative (AAMI), which began in 2008.   Another has been the first set of graduates in Spring 2015 from our new RN-to-BSN completion program (22) and the start of our Dental Hygiene baccalaureate program (students accepted in Summer 2015).  GHC has also increased credit hours awarded to joint enrolled students.

Baseline status

Multiple events are held each year and services offered.

Interim Measures of Progress

Retention and graduation rates for all African American males and separately, for those who are part of the AAMI.  Graduates from new bachelor programs.  New joint enrollment arrangements are in progress to increase joint enrolled credit hours further. Non-traditional retention and graduation rates.

Measures of Success

As the corresponding table in the Data Appendix shows, retention rates for African American male students who are part of our AAMI are substantially higher than for AAMs who are not in the program.  AAMI members also make up a substantial portion each FY of degrees awarded to African American males.  GHC’s overall rate of degrees awarded for the past five fiscal years is shown in the Data Appendix, with an increase in associate degrees awarded between FY 2014 (585) and FY 2015 (625, local figures) of just over 6%. The new BSN graduates add 22 more degrees, contributing another 4% toward total degrees awarded. Credit hours awarded to joint enrolled students have increased 288% since AY 2010-11.

Lessons Learned

The retention figures also show a strong increase in retention for students who started college part-time rather than full-time.  Since 51% of our students in Fall 2014 were part-time, that is a particularly welcome trend. It results at least partly from our increased online offerings, which have become the courses of choice for our adult and working students as the number of students who attend in the evenings has dropped.  However, further analysis is needed to see what else is contributing to the increased retention for this group.



4. Provide intentional advising to keep students on track to graduate.

High-impact strategy

Establish criteria for identifying students who may need special interventions in the semester (e.g., lack of attendance, poor performance on early assignments).

Summary of Activities

GHC has three programs contributing to this strategy.  First, GHC created an Early Bird Advising (EBA) program which enables students to work with a faculty member to create an academic plan that spans at least a year, taking into consideration contingency plans, rather than simply choosing courses for the next semester. Second, GHC has operated an Early Warning Program (EWP) since Fall 2011 based on faculty reports.  At the time the program began, faculty were not required to provide a mid-term grade (or S/U).  Initially reports were required at three intervals: 5% into the term of attending/non-attending (auto drop for non-attendance); 30% for pursuing/not pursuing the course (irregular attendance, irregular completion of assignments, not a performance measure); 50% for a performance measure (grade or S/U).  From early analyses of the data in Fall 2013, the required reports were reduced to two: 5% for attending and 40% for a performance indicator.  Third, GHC created an Adult Concierge Initiative (ACI) in Fall 2013 that works to keep adult students on track by addressing student difficulties that are not strictly academic. A case management model was added in Fall 2014, assigning adult students to a staff member at their campuses to assist them with any issue that may hinder their ability to enroll in college or remain enrolled. The main responsibility of the adult concierges is to manage a list of both institutional and community resources to provide assistance. These resources range from help with paying utilities to food banks, transportation, transitional housing, counseling, and scholarships and grants reserved for adult students. The concierge model strengthens the partnership with our local communities as GHC’s concierges continue to build and maintain their records with the local agencies that provide services that students need.

Baseline status

EBA.  The baseline status for EBA was no required or incented visits for students to professional or faculty advisors for long-term planning and no advertising that long-term planning of path to degree was available.  In the first three years of the program, advertising of the opportunity for long-term planning began and faculty were recruited to provide it, but no incentive for students was available.

EWP. Interventions for students reported with unsatisfactory performance is discussed below under the Goal 4 strategy of providing “timely and targeted advising intervention.”  The baseline status for the EWP was no required notice to students until final grades. 

ACI.  Baseline status was no formal intervention for adult students at risk of not enrolling or stopping out due to external, non-academic factors.   

Interim Measures of Progress

EBA. One key measure is the level of student participation.  Longer term GHC’s goal is a 5% increase in retention rate for students who participate in EBA and a 2% increase in their graduation rate.

EWP. The number and percentage of student reports with unsatisfactory performance is tracked each term as well as two sub-measures: number and percentage of student reports with unsatisfactory performance in credit-level classes that end with passing grades and the same measure for student reports in Learning Support classes.  The number of reports is tracked rather than the number of students because one student can be reported with unsatisfactory performance in multiple classes in a term.  The percentages are calculated against the total number of seats occupied in a term. The number of students off-track in courses in Fall 2014 is given in the Data Appendix as requested (students, not reports).

ACI. The operation of the Adult Concierge Initiative changed during 2014-15 and goals have not yet been set for it.  Eventual goals will include increased retention and graduation for students with assigned concierges.

Measures of Success

EBA. Student participation in Early Bird Advising increased sharply during 2013-14 as an incentive of early registration was added.  For 2013-14, 2521 students participated in EBA at least once during the academic year.  For 2014-15, the number rose to 2766, an increase of 9.7%.

EWP. Considering only fall and spring terms because summer terms involve many transient students who cannot be tracked further, between Fall 2011 and Spring 2014, the total percentage of unsatisfactory reports has dropped steadily (high in Fall 2011 of 49% to low in Spring 2014 of 24%).   Over the same period, the percentage of reports of unsatisfactory performance in credit-level classes that end in a passing grade has gone up (Fall 2011 at 26%, high in Spring 2014 of 31%).  The successful completion rate for unsatisfactory reports in Learning Support classes has been even more dramatic (Fall 2011 at 19%, high in Spring 2014 of 27%).  We think that these are strong results for our EWP.

ACI.  During 2013-14, the Adult Concierge Program began creating community partnerships and enrolling students.  During 2014-15 a new case management system was adopted but due to changes in the program itself, no outcomes are available for it yet.

Lessons Learned

EBA.  Incentives work to increase student participation in this voluntary program.

EWP. The earliest analysis that led to the reduction in reporting intervals was faulty but even the reduced reporting at two intervals seems to be having an impact.  Under consideration: requiring all three reports from faculty who are teaching online classes, closer to the reporting that is done for eCore.  We also plan to add retention and graduation outcomes to our measures.

ACI. A case management model was needed to maintain all the provider information and document the matches between students and potential providers. 

High Impact Strategy

Use DegreeWorks to track student progress.

Summary of Activities

DegreeWorks immediately enhanced the ability of GHC’s professional advisors to give targeted guidance for staying on track when it was rolled out in April of 2011.  Its use has gradually expanded to faculty and students, and continues to grow.

Baseline status

Initally DegreeWorks was used only by the professional advisors but its use is spreading to faculty advisors. 

Interim Measures of Progress

The number of times DegreeWorks is used by faculty and advisors as indicated by notes provided. Notes are pre-formulated so adding them is not onerous.  GHC has not turned on logging of all times DegreeWorks is accessed, so the number of times the program has been used by students cannot yet be determined.

Measures of Success

Data for DegreeWorks usage in Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 is provided in the Data Appendix.  Professional advisors used DegreeWorks 11,966 times; faculty used it 3,127 times.

Lessons Learned

The more faculty, staff, and students who understand Degreeworks, the better. We continue to work toward expanding its use.

High Impact Strategy

Ensure that students who meet off-track criteria receive timely and targeted advising intervention.

Summary of Activities

EWP. The baseline intervention for every student identified with any unsatisfactory assessments in our Early Warning Program is an e-mail notification from an advisor.  The e-mail tells the student the instructor(s) and course(s) for which the assessment is unsatisfactory and directs the student to contact his or her instructor to develop a plan for satisfactory work.  Students are also invited to contact the advisor at their physical site or the eLearning advisor for students in online classes.  Many students reply to the e-mail with questions, which places them immediately into contact with an advisor.  In addition, advisors from each site (including the eLearning advisor) reach out to students reported at their sites, creating a second contact even for students who do nothing in response to the e-mail.  Other, more targeted interventions have been adopted by specific groups but are not presently tracked.

Baseline status

E-mails and follow-on calls to students as described above.

Interim Measures of Progress

EWP. GHC is currently only tracking the number of unsatisfactory reports and course outcomes for those reports (how many lead to a passing grade) as explained in a prior section for this goal.

Measures of Success

Current success measures are the ones described in a prior section for GHC’s Early Warning Program.

Lessons Learned

EWP. We plan to add a measure of unsatisfactory reports by special populations, particularly ones that are targeted by specific programs such as African American males.  That could lead to additional interventions. Over the life of the EWP, GHC has moved from only the e-mail notifications at first to adding outreach by the professional advisors.  With each expansion we catch students who did not understand that they had been reported for unsatisfactory performance and thought all was going well with the class.  Additional interventions would probably improve the successful notification of the at-risk students, who can then consult their instructors in time to correct the issues or withdraw from the course with a W rather than go on to fail. 



5. Award degrees to students who may have already met requirements for associate degrees via courses taken at one or more institutions.

High-impact strategy

Automatically conduct degree audits of all students with 60 or more credit hours at associate degree institutions to see whether they have met requirements for degrees. If so, an associate degree would be awarded unless students have opted out or did not have the opportunity to sign off on the initial permission for automatic award of degree.

Summary of Activities

The audits are conducted each term.  GHC does not yet have an opt-out form or procedure but some degrees have been auto-awarded (see table in Data Appendix).

Baseline status

The baseline status was no auto-awarded degrees.

Interim Measures of Progress

The number of awards beginning in FY 2014 (44)

Measures of Success

Our figure for reverse transfer includes auto-awarded degrees, with 39 degrees awarded this way for FY 2015 or some 6% of associate degrees awarded in that period.  Our goal for that period was 6 additional degrees.

Lessons Learned

Our ability to auto-award or reverse-award degrees may decrease over time as we locate students who are near completion but stopped out or as students complete the associate degree more frequently before transferring.  Hence our forward-looking goals for this strategy are modest, anticipating that 2% of associate degrees awarded in each of the next five years will be awarded in this way.



7. Increase the likelihood of degree completion by transforming the way that remediation is accomplished

High-impact strategy

Enroll most students in need of remediation in gateway collegiate courses in English and mathematics, with corequisite Learning Support.

Summary of Activities

After five years of piloting new approaches to remediation in concert with statewide task forces and Complete College Georgia, GHC was one of five institutions in USG fully at scale with corequisite and foundations classes for Math and a combined Reading/English in 2014-15, a year ahead of the required implementation date of Fall 2015. GHC was also at scale with different Math pathways for students planning STEM and non-STEM careers.  In addition, other high impact strategies for this goal have also been accomplished (“End the practice of requiring students to withdraw from all collegiate courses when they withdraw from Learning Support courses” and “Provide unlimited “attempts” to complete corequisite remediation”).  So Georgia Highlands is pursuing all the high-impact strategies for this goal.

Baseline status

GHC did not, in this first year, achieve the target of enrolling the majority of students in the corequisite classes. We placed two-thirds of the students requiring remediation into foundations and one-third in co-requisite.  We are monitoring the success of the students as placed (with the majority in the foundations classes) to determine whether enrolling the majority in corequisite classes is compatible with success in our access institution. 

Interim Measures of Progress

As shown in the Data Appendix, GHC is comparing the gateway success rates (rates of grades of A, B, or C) of students in corequisite remediation to rates of students who did not require remediation. Second, we are likewise comparing success rates of corequisite and non-LS students in the follow on class.  Finally, we are comparing the retention of corequisite and non-LS student to the following term (fall to spring retention) and the following year (one-year retention).

Measures of Success

Success rates in the gateway classes for students placed in corequisite classes were promising for Fall 2014.  Results for English corequisite students is presented in the next section on combining remediation in English and reading.  For math, students placed in the corequisite with MATH 1111 passed the gateway course at a lower but not distant rate compared with students who did not require Learning Support (MATH 1111: 60% for coreq, 69% for non-LS).  For the STATS path, which involved placement in a corequisite with MATH 1001, pass rates for coreq students was higher than the pass rate for students who did not require Learning Support (MATH 1001: 80% for coreq, 61% for non-LS).

Lessons Learned

The success rates of our corequisite students in 2014-15 is encouraging, if a little less so in STEM mathematics.  We are reviewing the content of our corequisite classes for STEM moving toward Fall 2015 and considering how we can incorporate elements from our corequisite course for the STATS path into MATH 1001 itself.  However, we are not planning to change our placement rules for 2015-16 pending outcomes for further progression of the corequisite students.  We are not certain yet, for example, how students in corequisite STATS-path classes plus MATH 1001 will fare in the Area D course, Statistics (MATH 2200). Hence, we plan to maintain placements as they are and probably have in 2015-16 a similar split of a third of students requiring remediation placed into corequisites and two thirds placed into foundations.

High-impact strategy

Combine remediation in English and reading.

Summary of Activities

Georgia Highlands was fully at scale in 2014-15 with combined English and reading remediation.

Baseline status

51 students requiring English/reading remediation went into corequisite instruction (32%) while 160 students went into foundations instruction (68%) in keeping with GHC’s overall placement ratio of one-third in corequisite, two-thirds in foundations.

Interim Measures of Progress

Our measures of success for these students include the ones mentioned in the previous section for the corequisite students (success in the gateway class and the follow-on class as well as retention, shown in the Data Appendix tables for corequisite and foundations).  However, we are also tracking the success of these students against a baseline of previous Learning Support results. We want to know how the progression of students in converged English/Reading remediation compares with progression of students with those areas separated.  

Measures of Success

As shown in the Data Appendix, outcomes for corequisite placement into ENGL 1101 for Fall 2014 are positive, leading to pass rates in the gateway class only slightly lower than pass rates for non-LS students (75% for coreq students, 80% for non-LS).  Similarly, for students who passed foundations English in Fall 2014, their success rate in ENGL 1101 compared well to the success rate for new non-LS students in Spring 2015 (62% for foundations students, 68% for non-LS). These are strong results.  Perhaps more impressive and important is the comparison of current students to those completing English and/or Reading remediation under the old approaches.  Considering LS Reading/English students who completed ENGL 1101 within the first two terms (the “gateway in two” figure), in Fall 2009 only 47% of students meeting the same placement requirements accomplished that.  In Fall 2014, using combined remediation, 66% of students were through ENGL 1101 within two terms. For us, that is a critical figure indicating that the new remediation model is working better than the old one. Interestingly, fall to spring retention was slightly higher in Fall 2009 (87% for Fall 2009, 83% for Fall 2014).

High-impact strategy

Ensure that all remediation is targeted toward supporting students in the skills they need to pass the collegiate course.

Summary of Activities

Georgia Highlands was also at scale with placement, corequisite, and foundations courses for Math that reflect a student’s planned career path (STEM versus non-STEM or STATS).

Baseline status

For this strategy we see success with our corequisite students in MATH 1111 and MATH 1001 as documented in a prior section, so we focus this assessment on the foundations courses in the STEM and STATS areas.

Interim Measures of Progress

GHC is tracking for the STEM and STATS path students the same outcomes mentioned earlier.  In addition, we want to know how the progression of students in the different math pathways compares with progression for students in the former single path represented by MATH 0097 and MATH 0099.

Measures of Success

For MATH 1111, we found that a success gap of 11% opened between students who completed the STEM foundations course in Fall 2014 and took MATH 1111 in the spring and students who took MATH 1111 in spring as new students who did not require Learning Support (48% for foundations, 59% for non-LS).  A similar success gap appeared among the STATS path students regarding MATH 1001 in the spring (47% for foundations, 83% for non-LS). 

Lessons Learned

Along our co-requisite instruction for the STATS path (MATH 1001) very successful, the foundations instruction in the same area was not.  We are reviewing our MATH 0989 course with this outcome in mind.  Similarly, we would like to close the success gap for the foundations students entering MATH 1111.



8. Restructure instructional delivery to support educational excellence and student success

High-impact strategy

Expand completely online opportunities.

Summary of Activities

Georgia Highlands College has been gradually increasing its online course offerings since Spring 2010 and in Spring 2015 rejoined eCore to increase availability further.  In addition, as of Spring 2015 GHC has multiple programs that can be completed online, both associate and baccalaureate programs.

Baseline status

As of Spring 2015, GHC provides 73 courses online and approximately 100 sections each fall and spring, along with 9 associate-level transfer pathways and 2 bachelor programs.  In addition, as of Spring 2015, GHC is again an affiliate of eCore, increasing the sections of core courses available online. 

Interim Measures of Progress

See the Data Appendix for a display of the growth of our online offerings over the past five years, showing a steady increase. Other measures include ones recommended by Complete College Georgia (credits attempted and passed for online classes). In addition, we compare pass rates for online courses with pass rates for their face-to-face equivalents with a goal that average pass rates in the two should remain within 10% of each other.

Measures of Success

Until 2015, GHC students have not been able to complete associate degrees fully online due to lack of an online science sequence for Area D.  Now multiple transfer pathways can be completed fully online.  The new health sciences completion programs for BSN and BSDH are also fully online.  Credits attempted and passed in online courses have gone steadily upward.  We anticipate that the first student whose associate degree is comprised entirely of online classes will graduate during 2015-16. Our overall pass rate gap between success in face-to-face class and success in online classes for Fall 2014 was 7%.  The detail for these figures appears in the Data Appendix.

Lessons Learned

We plan to maintain the close success rate for online classes to face-to-face classes by requiring all faculty teaching online to complete the first level of Quality Matters training (“Applying the Quality Matters Rubric”) by the end of 2015.  Several faculty members plan to move forward quickly to the Peer Reviewer training and each division will be creating an implementation plan for QM reviews of online courses that accompanies and complements other assessment activities at the college. Quality Matters focuses on assessing design and we are selecting additional training that focuses on instructional delivery (managing classes, keeping students involved, and so on) to complement Quality Matters. Growth In GHC’s distance learning program has been slow but steady, allowing for sufficient infrastructure and support processes to be put into place. 


Georgia Highlands College has seen an enrollment increase of 7.1% between Fall 2014 and Fall 2015, from 5,365 students to 5,748. Such an upturn sends an important message to current and prospective students: This College operates in five Northwest Georgia counties, from seven locations, with an access and limited baccalaureate mission that is aimed at unequivocal student success.  The observations below align with the goals selected.

Increase the number of undergraduate degrees awarded.

While focused on all students’ completion, we are particularly proud of our efforts targeting traditionally underserved populations, notably African American males. We credit hard work associated with the African American Male Initiative (AAMI). Upticks in degrees conferred to AA males and in retention, particularly among part-time students, are important to us. We have already expanded the AAMI effort to include other male students under our Georgia Highlands African-American and Minority Male Excellence program (GHAME).  The results from the wider group of GHAME members are promising.

To augment these trends, we have added a newly-appointed Director of Retention and Advocacy, are strongly considering adding a Director of Multicultural Education, and will further refine a (new in Fall 2015) Success Coaching Initiative aimed at first-time fulltime students (about 1000 students and 200 faculty and staff already involved).

Provide intentional advising to keep students on track to graduate.

We hold that the Early Warning Program (EWP) is working and should be retained and cultivated. With unsatisfactory reports dropping steadily and passing final grades rising, we will continue, study, and probably extend EWP’s use. We are gratified with the heightened use of DegreeWorks, and we will continue our expectations for active advising intervention for students found to be off-track in the process. As for academic advising overall, we believe that a revisiting of the process at GHC is required, carefully considering our professional advisor/faculty advisor blended approach to intended student outcomes. We plan to study our capacity to operate an assigned-advisor program, knowing that our multi-campus environment is challenging, as well as the creation of more centralized “action centers” at all locations that feature highly effective advisement opportunities. 

The Adult Concierge Initiative is a home-grown strategy that we are further refining to address factors frequently contributing to drop-out or stop-out status but not within reach of the institution alone to correct.  In 2015-16, we are pulling reports for each student served by one of our adult concierges in order to compare the retention and graduation rates of these nontraditional students to nontraditional students who have not received the concierge services. Our initial goal is a 10% increase in retention and 5% increase in graduation rates for nontraditional students who receive services from an adult concierge versus those who do not.

Award degrees to students who may have already met requirements for associate degrees via courses taken at one or more institutions.

Our efforts to conduct degree audits, reach out to students whose records indicate positive status, and automatically award deserved degrees, have paid off richly. This serves as both reward and reinforcement of educational goal, for students and institution. We plan to continue this win-win strategy.

Increase the likelihood of degree completion by transforming the way that remediation is accomplished.

GHC’s vanguard status reflect transformative efforts that have been underway for years. We are encouraged by success rates of our co-requisite students, particularly for the STATS pathway in math and for our English and reading combined remediation. After all, gateway courses are our business at GHC. To these already-valuable efforts, GHC will be among the first USG cohorts for the Gardner Institute’s Gateway to Completion Project, wherein we will tackle course transformation of five of our high enrollment/high D-F-W rates gateway courses. These data analyses, studies and revision initiatives will occur over the next three years, 2016-2018.

Restructure instructional delivery to support educational excellence and student success.

Successes in this area include soaring numbers in high-quality online offerings, increased flexibility for students enrolling in those courses, the College’s dedication to strengthening online classes through implementation of Quality Matters, and re-establishment of our affiliation with the much-improved e-Core. These efforts are bearing fruit. Our college goal is to reduce the DWF rate gap between face-to-face and online courses even farther, down the level of the individual course.  Faculty will enter into memoranda of understanding that stipulate heightened expectations for measures of engagement with students. In addition, eLearning will be considered a “campus” for purposes of budget, staffing, advising, tutoring, instructional design, faculty development, and continuous improvement.