University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College Achieves Stronger, More Equitable Student Achievement through Campus-Wide Investment in Quality Teaching
As a two-year community college, the University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College (UA-PTC) plays a key role in the education and workforce training pipeline in the Central Arkansas region. However, while many UA-PTC faculty are working professionals with direct industry experience, they had not previously been equipped with the practices needed to teach those vocations to students.
In 2017, the college began its partnership with ACUE to equip all of its instructors with evidence-based teaching practices. Today, 98% of all UA-PTC full-time faculty have become ACUE Certified.
Grades and passing rates up, DFWs down – with greater impacts for Black and Latino students – when taught by ACUE faculty
An analysis of student achievement data looked at two cohorts of UA-PTC faculty that completed the ACUE program in Effective Teaching Practices between the spring 2018 and 2019 semesters. The findings: more students passing courses, fewer receiving DFW grades, and attaining higher average course grades when taught by ACUE Certified faculty – with Black and Latino students experiencing even greater gains.Read research brief
Greater Impact for Black and Latino Students
Year 1 (2017-2018):
Increase in students passing courses and receiving fewer DFW grades. The positive drop in DFW grades was greater for Black students, down 7 percentage points.
In this study alone, 120 additional students passed their courses and 145 fewer students received DFW grades in their courses the year after faculty completed the ACUE course than would have otherwise.
Year 2 (2018-19):
Fewer students received DFW grades and average course grades improved, with greater impact for Hispanic/Latino students.
In this study alone, 250 fewer students received DFW grades while faculty were completing the ACUE course, and 201 fewer students received DFW grades the year after faculty completed the ACUE course.Read research brief
Stronger Outcomes During and Following the Pandemic
In the years that followed the study, UA-PTC leaders emphasize they had an even stronger footing to maintain student engagement and learning through the pandemic, which they credit to greater faculty adaptability across learning modalities as a result of ACUE programs.Read research brief
The Latest Research
Larger Gains in Student Achievement for Gateway Courses
Significant effects on grades, passing, and DFW rates in years while faculty are taking ACUE courses. Significant effects on passing and DFW rates in years after faculty are ACUE-Certified.Read research brief
Lower DFW Rates in Subsequent Courses
Significant differences between ACUE and non-ACUE faculty in DFW rates.Read research brief
Better Academic Outcomes with More ACUE Instructors
Significant positive relationship with GPA, course completion, passing, and success with larger correlations with passing and success for Black students.Read research brief