Office for Research on Student Success
The Office for Research on Student Success (ORSS) is an integral piece of the Student Success Initiative at UIC. The Office conducts translational research, which involves a recursive process of putting rigorous research into practice and assessing the subsequent outcomes. The ORSS seeks to answer specific questions about how students might excel at UIC, and where they might stumble. Those research findings inform the development of programs and initiatives to address issues related to student success. After the programs are implemented, the research continues to assess the effectiveness of those programs and inform changes. Another key aspect of the ORSS is data sharing. We feel our research is only valuable if it is in the hands of practitioners who can make use of it. We work closely with campus partners, such as the UIC Office of Institutional Research and Office of First Year Initiatives. To accomplish that, we report our findings in a number of venues–presentations and brown bag lunches on campus, presentations in the community such as at Thrive Chicago meetings, Forefront’s College and Career Access Persistence and Success group (CCAPS), and convenings of the Chicago Collaborative for Undergraduate Success, research and policy briefs, and to the higher education academic community through publications and conferences.
The ORSS is a hub for the UIC community to better understand our own efforts to improve retention and graduation rates of our students and close the achievement gap, thereby improving the lives of our students, their families, and their communities.