NSSE survey scores Centre highly in all engagement categories
DANVILLE, KY—The results are in for the 2008 National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE, pronounced "nessie") administered by the Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research. In all five of the NSSE benchmark categories, Centre scored higher than its comparison group, its institutional type group, and the overall NSSE average.
* Level of academic challenge
Centre was ranked highest in the engagement categories of Level of Academic Challenge (LAC); Active and Collaborative Learning (ACL); and Enriching Educational Experiences (EEE). The high LAC ranking indicates that students believe challenging intellectual and creative work is central to learning and quality at Centre. The high ACL ranking indicates that Centre students learn more when they are intensely involved in their education and are asked to think about and apply what they are learning in different settings. The high EEE ranking indicates that students enjoy the complimentary learning opportunities inside and outside the classroom that augment Centre's academic programs.
Centre also ranks highly in the categories Student-Faculty Interaction (SFI) and Supportive Campus Environment (SCE).
"This year's results show once again that our students report the Centre education is one that is engaging, inspiring and transformative," says Centre President John Roush.
Most comparisons among colleges are made on the basis of reputation and inputs. For example, the ranking system used by U.S. News and World Report, in which Centre ranks in the national top 50 (highest ranking of any Kentucky institution), depends on perceived prestige, finances and admissions data. (For a recent op-ed on how Centre fares in a range of rankings and guidebooks, click here.)
However, NSSE relies on students' views of the outcomes of their education—in other words, what actually happens after they enroll. The NSSE survey asks students questions such as: How many hours do you study? How often do you talk to faculty members or students with different political beliefs? What are some of your outside-the-classroom activities?
The survey measures how well colleges and universities engage their students in the essential learning experiences of higher education.
Research shows that the best predictor of learning and personal development among college students is the amount of time they spend "engaged" in their own education. NSSE is designed to measure the extent to which colleges effectively engage students in their education.
"We continue to exceed the goals that NSSE has set for us as a college," Roush says. "High school students and their families should use NSSE results to see which colleges do the best job in helping students learn. Centre's results in the survey are one more clear indication that students here are intensely and personally challenged to achieve their educational goals."
Centre has participated in NSSE every year since the survey began in 2000 and is one of only a handful of colleges to have participated every year and made all of its NSSE results available to the public.
Participation in NSSE and the release of results to the public is voluntary, although certain states, including Kentucky, require that their state institutions of higher learning take part and publish their results.
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Founded in 1819, Centre College is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges. Consumers Digest ranks Centre No. 1 in educational value among all U.S. liberal arts colleges. Centre alumni, known for their nation-leading loyalty in annual financial support, include two U.S. vice presidents and two Supreme Court justices. For more, visit http://www.centre.edu/web/elevatorspeech/
For news archives go to http://www.centre.edu/web/news/newsarchive.html.
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Danville, KY 40422