California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) has received a $2.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to create “Project Accelerate” to improve the learning, persistence, and overall success of CSUDH students, while decreasing their time to earning a degree.
The five-year, $524,8702 a year grant is funded under the ED’s Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) Program – Title V, which provides grants to assist HSI campuses, like CSUDH, increase enrollment and educational opportunities for Hispanic and high-need students. In 2015, Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education ranked CSUDH 33rd nationally in awarding bachelor’s degrees to Hispanic students (2015).
“This funding from the Department of Education will enable Cal State Dominguez Hills to significantly boost not only the success of our large Hispanic student population, but the entire student body,” said Rod Hay, interim provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. “Project Accelerate will consist of some of today’s most comprehensive pedagogy and technology-driven teaching methods. We look forward to its development and launch, and helping increase the number of academically prepared lower-income students for higher learning and the workforce.”
Project Accelerate will be developed and integrated by CSUDH into three primary high-impact activities: academic support services; developing a coordinated, comprehensive advising suite of services; and developing and implementing high-quality online or hybrid learning opportunities.
Improving academic support services includes expanding CSUDH’s Summer Bridge program to more college-ready students (the program historically served only freshmen in need of remediation), peer coaching, intrusive advising, and supplemental instruction peer-led team learning. Other activities that CSUDH has piloted but seeks to institutionalize include Stanford’s highly regarded belongingness and growth mindset interventions, University 101 Freshmen Dream Seminars, and Designing Your Life modules for juniors.
CSUDH will develop an online advising suite and train faculty and staff in its uses and protocols. The suite’s interface will consist of an array of advising and counseling services that efficiently use available technology.
The university will also create and implement online, flipped classroom or hybrid learning opportunities. Faculty will be trained on best practices and have the opportunity to make course changes. Upon completion of the project, these faculty will serve as trainers to other faculty through the university’s Faculty Development Center.