While institutions have been investing in efforts to close achievement gaps, they remain. With a growing emphasis on data analytics focusing on socio-cultural groupings, some institutions make choices that benefit students while others may simply reinforce past behavior and potentially increase achievement gaps. Emerging neuroscience points to malleable intrapersonal competencies that align with desired career readiness skills that currently aren’t utilized in data analytics.
This session describes one university’s intention to cultivate intrapersonal competencies through first-year, first-time student (FTIC) enrollment in a seminar class. The research team utilized random forest, cluster analysis, and inferential analysis of intrapersonal competency pre-and post-seminar assessments to determine which socio-cultural groupings and which intrapersonal competencies were predicting end-of-term grade point average (EOT GPA). In addition, the research team sought to illustrate for whom achievement gaps - as defined by EOT GPA - were being closed, while also discovering where the institution maybe creating harm in students’ intrapersonal competency development.
Findings revealed two distinct clusters with significantly different EOT GPA. Significant differences between the EOT GPA clusters were explained more by intrapersonal competencies scores, rather than significant differences in ethnicity, except for those who identified as Asian whose psychological well-being scores significantly decreased over the course of the semester. Such findings suggest that intrapersonal competency measures may be useful for colleges and universities to identify how to support specific socio-cultural groupings to ensure success for all students.
Marilee Bresciani Ludvik, University of Texas Arlington, United States