U of Chicago 'Mythbusters' project debunks academic performance assumptions

Dive Brief:

  • High school attendance has the highest correlation to students being college-ready, with those students on average possessing attendance rates of 98% during the school year, according to recent research from the University of Chicago and its To & Through Project.
  • Designed to give communities better information about college completion pathways, the research breaks down facts about how test scores and desire for academic success are not as tied to prospects for college entry as many may believe. Class time, guidance counseling and even choosing a two-year degree program prior to four-year degree pursuit are all common ideologies which can contribute to academic mismatch and low-confidence about college completion among high school students. 
  • The busted myths are derived from more than 10 years of data collected by the university on Chicago public schools, as reported by Campus Technology

Dive Insight:

The To and Through Project's work is what will help the general public have more confidence in higher education. It is not enough for college leaders to promote the institution as a pathway to a better life, but to also examine the ways in which educational outcomes are published without context. 

College leaders, specifically those seeking to broaden community engagement, can extend research into communities which examines the nuances of poverty and low-resources and the impact on educational attainment. Narratives about a lack of motivation or exposure are often skewed, but colleges have the research and expertise to parse out accurate information, and to lend support towards improvement

Filed Under: Higher Ed
Top image credit: Flickr user lmgadelha