Magazine article Techniques

Rio Salado College

Magazine article Techniques

Rio Salado College

Article excerpt

RIO SALADO COLLEGE (RSC) IN TEMPE, ARIZONA, IS PART0FTHE Maricopa Community College District. Although it has provided academic and career education since 1978, over the years it has grown to offer education and training at multiple locations, and it has evolved to meet the changing needs of the community. When RSC was recognized by 360Career as one of the 30 top online community colleges for 2014, among the reasons cited were RSC was among the first colleges to offer online classes in 1996, and by 2006, most of the courses at the college were transformed into distance-learning programs, helping many students to conveniently achieve their academic goals. Furthermore, 360Career noted that RSC focuses on providing quality teaching services and helps students grow academically and socially.

RSC has articulation agreements with Arizona's three public universities, as well as more than 40 universities across the country. It has also established a number of innovative programs, like College Bridge Pathways (a bridge to college-level programs for non-traditional students) and Communiversity (a partnership of higher-education institutions in which students can earn progressive degrees in one location), and early college programs like dual enrollment.

Last year, Bill Gates visited the school because of RioAchieve, an initiative funded through a grant from Next Generation Learning Challenges (NGLC). NGLC is a partnership led by EDUCAUSE, which is primarily funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. RioAchieve targets first-to-college and Pell-eligible students through five specific innovations to support student success, retention and completion. Rio Compass is a completion portal that allows students to monitor progress toward degree completion. The Intervention Dashboard or Guided Intervention and Response (GIvR) collects data from several areas of the college to automatically alert appropriate staff to implement an intervention. RioPACE (progress and course engagement) is the college's predictive analytics system that tracks student login frequency, site engagement and progress in the course. GEAR (Guided Evaluation Assessment Response) is a technology-based solution that assists the faculty in providing customized detailed feedback to students on their assessments. …

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