Academic journal article Journal of Developmental Education

Living-Learning Programs

Academic journal article Journal of Developmental Education

Living-Learning Programs

Article excerpt

Many U. S. universities are using various highimpact educational practices to increase students' academic achievement. One well researched, high-impact practice that has proven beneficial is Living- Learning Programs (LLPs). A national program, called the National Study of LLPs (NSLLP), provides research on student outcomes related to living-learning programs. The research has found LLPs to have positive benefits on a student's academic and personal/social outcomes.

Today's LLPs seek to produce ideal citizens through high-impact activities in residential learning communities. Students are involved in comprehensive learning in and out of the classroom, and engagement with their peers and faculty. Students in an LLP share common academic interests and live together in a residential setting.

Brower and Inkelas have gathered data from LLPs at many different universities. Surveys were administered in 2004 and again in 2007 to provide longitudinal data on the long-term effects of student participation in LLPs. In 2008, four case studies from four campuses with commendable living-learning programs were produced.

NSLLP results found specific student outcomes, such as positive academic and social transition to college, result from both student inputs (i.e., demographics and high school achievement) and college environments (i.e., academic major, peer interests, faculty interactions). Their research also identified 17 LLP "program themes" including civic and social leadership, general academic, cultural, leisure, research, women only, and first-year transition. Most of the livinglearning programs had a similar structure with a typical size of 50 students living in one portion of a residence hall, and each had an overseer/director in an academic or student affairs office/department. …

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