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Knowledge From the Field

Conducting a Scan of Your College Access and Success System

Published: November 2010

Publisher(s): OMG Center for Collaborative Learning

Author(s): Dougherty, Victoria; Michele Lempa

Funder(s): John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

View Report (24 pages; 170KB; PDF)

Conducting a Scan of Your College Access and Success System

Area of Focus: Preparation for College


This guide provides an overview of how to develop and implement an assessment of local college access and success systems. It explores why an assessment is important, the steps necessary to accurately gauge where a community’s system stands, and how to make use of the findings to stimulate change. Case study material from two cities—Miami, FL and Philadelphia, PA—is also presented.

Key Findings and/or Recommendations

=Local research studies to analyze college-going patterns and available supports are vital to a community’s ability to improve college attainment

=Leaders in government, education, and philanthropy should work together to convene local partners and focus on advancing a college access and success system

=Investing in programs, such as providing transition supports from high school graduation to the first semester of college, can be a major boon toward improving college access and success

=Supporting policy changes, such as post-secondary counseling mandates and greater opportunities for dual enrollment, will also aid in strengthening college-going culture

Geographic Focus: National

Subjects/Keywords: Higher Education; School Reform; Elementary and Secondary Education; College Access; College Success

+ Successful strategy
= Observation
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