tc columbia

STEM-Focused Technology-Mediated Advising Reform: Plans for Implementation by Four Colleges

By: Markeisha Grant


In 2015 The Helmsley Charitable Trust provided grants to four Achieving the Dream (ATD) Leader Colleges to engage in STEM-specific iPASS reform beginning in fall 2016. iPASS, or Integrated Planning and Advising for Student Success, is a whole-school reform approach that uses technology to promote, support, and sustain long-term, intrusive advising relationships with students.

As part of an evaluation of the colleges’ work, CCRC has conducted pre-implementation site visits and will conduct post-implementation visits at each of the four colleges. The primary goals of CCRC’s fieldwork are to understand (1) how iPASS is being implemented within the institutional context of each college, (2) how colleges are tailoring iPASS to meet the needs of STEM students, (3) whether colleges are experiencing transformative change over time, and (4) what effect iPASS appears to be having on student outcomes. This brief presents preliminary findings from the first round of site visits on how these four institutions are approaching STEM-focused iPASS, their rationale for selecting STEM students and programs as a focus for the reform, and their implementation plans. It also discusses early evidence of transformative change.