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Institute for Higher Education
Leadership & Policy (IHELP)

IHELP conducts research and applies knowledge and evidence to produce actionable recommendations to improve policy, practice, and leadership for postsecondary readiness and success. Our research, evaluation, technical assistance, policy development, and other services inform policy makers, practitioners, and educators. We focus on educational institutions that serve diverse populations whose education is vital for individual success, a healthy society, and a globally competitive economy. IHELP is a non-profit organization funded privately through grants and contracts.

Recent Publications

NEW!! A New Vision for California Higher Education: A Model Public Agenda
March 2014
This new IHELP report draws on various reports and other sources of information to construct a model public agenda to address the mounting challenges facing California higher education. It is intended to inspire broad discussion potentially leading to an official public agenda for California higher education. The model public agenda envisions region-based planning and heightened collaboration at the regional level, guided by effective state-level policy leadership. It envisions more effective and cost-effective programming through greater program specialization at individual colleges and universities, with student access to broader offerings ensured through the effective use of technology. The model also calls for strong, informed state policy leadership and high-level staff support to fulfill critical fiscal, advisory, and accountability roles.

NEW!! From Community College to University: Expectations for California’s New Transfer Degrees
March 2014
A new report written by IHELP for the Public Policy Institute of California analyzes the progress of the California Community Colleges’ “associate degrees for transfer,” new degrees created as a result of state-enacted legislation in 2010. The degrees are designed to facilitate community college students’ admission to the California State University system and ease completion of a bachelor’s degree. The report finds the reform is leading to the development of clearer transfer pathways for students, although challenges remain including limited awareness of the new pathways among community college students. The report offers recommendations for improving the implementation effort. Click here for the technical appendix.

NEW!! Next Gen Tools: CFA Learning Environment
March 2014
This publication series, written by IHELP Research Assistant Jodi Lewis and funded and published by EDUCAUSE, looks at the strategies and tools used by Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC) grant recipients to support their new "breakthrough model" schools. NGLC is an initiative to improve postsecondary readiness and completion by identifying and scaling technology-enabled approaches to secondary and postsecondary education, especially for low-income students. This second brief highlights College for America’s comprehensive platform that tracks learning and degree progress and provides data management and analytics.

Next Gen Tools: Activate Instruction
March 2014
This first brief highlights a free online-based learning platform co-developed by Summit Public Schools, Illuminate Education, and the Girard Education Foundation. It integrates curricula with assessments, enabling students to progress at their own pace.

Average Won't Do: Performance Trends in California Higher Education as a Foundation for Action
January 2014
This report is the fifth in a series analyzing California’s postsecondary performance in the areas of preparation, affordability, participation, completion, benefits and finance.  The report provides a summary of trends in each performance area over the past decade and offers a breakdown of performance by region and race/ethnicity. This report, sponsored by the Campaign for College Opportunity, is the first installment of a three-part project to address postsecondary performance in California, with the later installments to include a model public agenda for stakeholder discussion and case studies of state-level leadership in public postsecondary education.


In the Education Policy Community

Highlights and Previews of Two Forthcoming Reports
March 13, 2014, CSU Academic Council

From Community College to University Expectations for California’s New Transfer Degrees
March 21, 2014, Public Policy Institute of California Briefing

Testimony on the California Community Colleges’ Student Success Score Cards
February 18, 2014, California Assembly Select Committee on Community Colleges

Testimony on the Accountability for Postsecondary Education and Performance: A Framework for Informing State Budget and Policy to Meet Public Needs

February 26, 2014, Senate Committee on Education and Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee on Education


IHELP Newsletters

March 2014