Report: Educators Identify Strategies to Improve Student Progression

A new report from the Blackboard Institute identifies exposing high school students to the college experience as the top method for increasing college-going. The report highlights effective practices for improving student progression, based on one-on-one interviews with 24 education experts, leaders and practitioners identified as K-20 thought leaders.

Closing the Gap between High School and College identifies the disparity between high school exit requirements and college entry expectations and a lack of 21st century skills among students as the reasons high school students do not go on to college or arrive unprepared at higher education institutions, where retention rates are bleak.

The report outlines strategies for closing the gap, as assessed by the experts, leaders and practitioners. Nineteen of the interviewees named exposing high school students to the college experience as one of the top methods of encouraging high school students to matriculate into college. Following are the top six strategies cited:

  • Exposing high school students to the college experience with accelerated learning, including AP, IB and dual enrollment
  • Incorporating technology into the learning process
  • Prioritizing training for teachers so they can help prepare students for college success
  • Reevaluating how teachers can provide a more organic experience for students
  • Assessing the college-readiness of students early, while there is still time to intervene
  • Adopting national standards that are aligned with entry requirements for higher education.

Education experts, leaders and practitioners who were interviewed as part of the report include Dr. Roger Benjamin, president of the Council for Aid to Education, Dr. Chris Dede of Harvard University, Johanna Duncan-Poitier of State University of New York, Kentucky's Commissioner of Education, Dr. Terry Holliday, and others. To read the full report, visit