Higher Student Retention and Stronger, More Equitable Outcomes Through Quality Teaching
In 2016, The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) began an institution-wide commitment to its faculty, evidence-based teaching, and student success by launching the ACUE Faculty Development Institute. From the start, USM and ACUE worked closely to lead high quality, large-scale research to evaluate student impact.
Today, more than 200 faculty have participated across USM and – with 1 out of every 4 full-time faculty ACUE-Certified – the university is on-track to ensure every student benefits from high-quality, evidence-based instruction, in every class.Contact Us
Higher retention for first-year students taught by ACUE faculty
Increase in passing rates in first-year gateway courses
Decrease in DFW rates in first-year gateway courses
Higher Retention for First Year Students
An analysis of enrollment data from 2017 to 2019 found that first-year student retention was 3.7 percentage points higher among students taught by ACUE faculty, a statistically significant difference relative to comparison group data. Within this study, involving 32 ACUE trained faculty, an additional 80 students returned to USM in a subsequent academic year than would have otherwise, as compared to outcomes from over 800 instructors who have yet to earn their ACUE credential.Read research brief
Amy Chasteen, PhD
Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Dr. Chasteen talks about the importance of being able to measure the impact of faculty development efforts and how ACUE’s study shows that faculty development impacts student outcomes.
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
Stronger Achievement in First-Year Gateway Courses
First-year students see increased performance when taking gateway courses with ACUE instructors.
- 6.4% pt increase in passing rates
- 5.3% pt decrease in DFW rate
- Impact on DFW rates was 6% pt larger for Black students relative to White students
Students who complete a gateway course with an ACUE instructor perform better in their subsequent course in the discipline.
- 3% pt lower DFW rates
- Higher GPAs by .06 points (on a 4.0 scale)
More Academic Success and Equity Overall
When students complete more courses taught by ACUE instructors, they perform better across all of their courses.
- Impact is greater for passing and success among Black students and when isolating courses students took with non-ACUE/pre-ACUE instructors.