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ISAC Collection of Nationwide College Success/Completion Programs

The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) is currently in the process of collecting information on Illinois schools’ Monetary Award Program (MAP) student advising and support programs targeted at student retention and completion, per the recommendations approved by the Commission and the General Assembly in the 2014 MAP Advising Workgroup Report. Results from the report found that a lack of specific information on college completion programs that work was acknowledged to be a significant barrier to providing these additional programs.

Plans are underway to share data on these Illinois completion programs in an interactive and user-friendly way with all schools and any other interested parties in the summer of 2016. In lieu of sharing the Illinois-specific completion program data, ISAC felt it could be helpful to collect and disseminate data on the many college completion programs underway nationwide that has shown some impressive outcomes. The collection of this information showed that many colleges have undertaken not one, but numerous completion initiatives on their campuses, and that many are seeing gains in retention and graduation rates, increases in academic achievement, and in some cases increased revenue. The research also showed that schools are coming up with some new and innovative ways to improve completion rates, many that target students earlier, like 13 year programs/early college programs that can result in a student simultaneously completing high school and an associate degree, and promise programs that often provide scholarship aid and mentoring to local public school students who attend a public in-state institution.

We hope you find the following resources helpful. Please keep in mind that the collection of college completion programs is by no means an all-inclusive list of successful completion programs, just ones that we found have received awards or been highlighted in various publications because of their promising results. The list is a “living document” that we expect can continuously be added to. We’ve also included a document that lists the various college completion program databases that we found, and a document that provides some new college success programs that don’t yet have outcomes.

  1. ISAC Collection of College Success Programs with Outcomes: A collection of 150+ nationwide college completion programs that can be sorted and/or filtered by state, sector, 25th percentile ACT composite score, and/or primary program type. A link to a printable pdf of each individual program containing additional information is included following the Self-Reported Outcomes.
  2. National College Success/Completion Program Databases: A collection of various college completion program databases, some containing outcomes/results and some not, and some focusing on specific students like adults, community college students, or minority male students.
  3. New and Innovative College Completion Programs: A sampling of recent, innovative national college completion programs that don’t yet have outcomes. Illinois programs are excluded since we are in the process of collecting that data from schools.