September 2020 Research Roundup

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Collaboratory’s Research Roundup is a quarterly digest that shares a recap of current scholarship, research, and thought leadership in the field of higher education as it relates to community engagement, partnership development, practice, assessment, and evaluation. 

This edition of the Research Roundup focuses on community engagement practitioners and their institutions’ response to COVID-19.  The resources below provide support and guidance about how to navigate the continuously evolving landscape of higher education community engagement research, teaching, assessment, and evaluation during a global pandemic.

Assessment During a Crisis: Responding to a Global Pandemic

In March 2020, institutions abruptly pivoted to remote instruction, sending students, faculty, and staff away from college campuses in response to COVID-19.  This report provides an overview of findings from the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment’s (NILOA) national survey of assessment-related changes made in Spring 2020 in response to COVID-19; couples those findings with other reports released from March through July; and provides guidance in the form of “do’s” and “do not’s” for higher education and the field of assessment — looking beyond Fall 2020 toward what needs to be doneAccess the report.


Innovative Approaches to Programmatic Assessment in an Era of Flux

Leaders of higher education need practical solutions to engaging in program improvement, providing student supports, and fortifying partnerships with collaborators.  Compounding these needs are the heightened demands thrust upon faculty to advise students online, reconfigure in-person courses to hybrid and online models, and attend to their students’ emergent psychological, academic and social needs – as they themselves navigate through a new set of personal stressors associated with COVID-19.  Making matters worse is that many of these changes have been and will be unpredictable; a shift from in-person to hybrid instruction can occur in less than a week.  Members of the academy are faced with one paradoxical certainty: we are in an era of flux that is unlikely to change anytime soon.  This paper explores how meaningful assessment and the practices used to support it can be maintained virtually without exerting feats of herculean strength.  Access the paper.


Pivoting Community Engagement During COVID-19

The Urban Institute is focusing its efforts to support effective responses, resilience, and recovery for those most negatively affected by COVID-19.  We can do that through lifting up lessons from past health crises or natural disasters, producing tools to analyze which geographic regions or sectors will be hardest hit, and suggesting policies to protect and support vulnerable populations.  As we emphasize the need to acknowledge structural racism in tackling the racial disparities apparent in COVID-19 cases and deaths, we can also begin to address the lack of certain voices in the discussions, analyses, and proposals to mitigate COVID-19’s effects.  Incorporating community voices and shifting the power dynamics in developing and designing responses to the health crisis is key to ensuring we do not repeat history and exacerbate existing disparities.  Access the article.


Community-Engaged Scholarship During COVID-19

This document is posted by UNCG’s Institute for Community and Economic Engagement (ICEE) to support faculty, staff, students, and community partners who are engaged in scholarship (broadly defined) through reciprocal and mutually beneficial partnerships to address community-identified priorities.  This is a place for us to share ideas and resources with each other as we navigate community-engaged scholarship during these challenging times.  Access the document.

Share your Resources!

The resources provided above don’t even begin to scratch the surface of the newest information out there to provide insights on how higher education is responding to COVID-19.  If we did not include a resource you think we should know about and share, contact us at [email protected]

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