Event: Undergraduate Research Symposium
Date: May 18, 2019
Location: UCI Student Center
Presenter: Kassandra Flores
Mentor: Rachel Baker
Title: Supplemental Instruction and its Effect on Persistence among Community College Students
Today’s community colleges are increasingly focused on the transfer to four-year institutions, as around 77% of incoming students express a desire attaining a bachelor’s degree. However, not all community college students are academically prepared to succeed in college-level coursework. Supplemental Instruction (SI) is a peer-led academic support program where students participate in discussion groups outside of the class. Discussions are aimed at broadening the depth of information and reinforcing lecture material. In addition to more hours of guided instruction, SI can provide students with guidance on academic skills and behaviors, such as developing study habits. Although previous literature suggests that SI is helpful in providing support, these studies often examine this relationship across one course. This project aims to discover how Supplemental Instruction supports academic success among students in a community college, looking across different courses. Using previously collected SI data from a community college, we have examined at the relationship between academic success and SI participation. Although there seem to be general positive effects among students who participate in SI based on these data, there are a number of factors to additionally consider. At this community college, SI is optional and in general, students with higher GPAs tend to attend more. When looking across courses, students persist at varying rates, and SI is not always helpful in each case. Overall, the results suggest SI effects differ based on numerous factors and further analysis should be conducted to get a better understanding of SI and academic persistence.