Using Student Success Metrics for Student Equity Planning

Using Student Success Metrics for Student Equity Planning at Woodland Community College

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Dr. Siria Martinez is Dean of Student Success & Institutional Effectiveness at Woodland Community College. Recently, Dr. Martinez co-led Woodland’s 11-person interdisciplinary Student Success Committee, overseeing development of the three-year Student Equity Plan. The plan was also reviewed and further developed in collaboration with Academic Senate members, College Council Committee Members and Planning and Institutional Effectiveness Committee Members. Below Dr. Martinez shares how the Student Success Metrics (SSM) were instrumental to the 2019-2022 equity planning process.

How did you use SSM for Woodland Community College’s recent equity plan development?
The SSM were used to gather data for the creation of an equity plan for the college where we could obtain a meaningful and nuanced look at the disaggregated data. These deep looks into the different historically disadvantaged groups led the college to think outside the traditional models of what it means to be disadvantaged (based on race and ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, and being a first-generation college student), to look at students that are vulnerable and often overlooked, such as foster and veteran students. This allowed our campus constituents to have very robust conversations around equity.

How was having recent SSM data advantageous for your equity plan development versus previous years?
Having the SSM as a central source of data provided an insurance that the data collected would be the same across all the groups, and we could truly see the differences between groups. Having a consistent method of comparison through the SSM has allowed us to easily identify the groups the college needed to target as part of our next three year plan. 

How would statewide coordination and metric alignment for use by the colleges to create local plans help students succeed?
Statewide coordination and metric alignment is vital to ensure we can accurately compare groups not just within our college but also compared to other campuses across the state. This central data source also creates the ability to hold colleges accountable to meeting their set goals. When each college uses different databases, it is difficult to compare data. A central data source allows for accurate comparison and also statewide trends. 

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