Sometimes the most unfortunate events lead to the best kind of innovation and creative problem-solving. A year ago, this week, the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the world. Our lives changed, our students’ lives changed, our families, our co-workers, our organizations, all changed. But within the change, the loss, and transition to new ways of doing things, there were opportunities to make a greater impact and learn something from our actions.
Dr. Colin Suchland and I began our close study of high impact practices at the community college level about 18 months ago, six months before the pandemic. Our work led to a number of interesting ways to look at HIPs but it was not until we were shut down, that we determined that there could be a connection between HIPs and Social Cognitive Theory (SCT) and this connection should be explored.
Last week, our article “Connecting High Impact Practices and Student Self-Efficacy: Social Cognitive Theory as a Window into Student Growth,” was published in Intersection: A Journal at the Intersection of Assessment and Learning, which is the official journal of the Association for the Assessment of Learning in Higher Education (AALHE). This methodology paper combines the literature of HIPs with SCT and presents research tested in an undergraduate sociology class during the pandemic. Within the study, we share our HIPs framework, rubric, and instrument for capturing pre/post-self-efficacy, all created and managed within AEFIS, all-in-one assessment management platform.
This was a very impactful experience for myself and Colin, as we learned more about how to continue to engage students despite being socially distanced, how important it was to anchor the implementation of HIPs into a framework that outlines the specific practices and behaviors expected of students and to include the student voice and choice into HIPs-based curricula. I hope you will take the time to review this work and reach out to us with your ideas for furthering this research and partnering with us in 2021.