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Connection by Design: Students’ Perceptions of Their Community College Experiences

By Thad Nodine, Laura Jaeger, Andrea Venezia, Kathy Reeves Bracco

With research support from Public Agenda


As community colleges work to improve student completion rates, it’s not often that college leaders can learn the collective views of their students about what’s working and not working for them at the institution.

This report, produced by WestEd and Public Agenda, uses focus group data to describe the perspectives of community college students—current students, completers, and non-completers—and their community college experiences.

The authors identify findings as they relate to three areas:

  • Connection to information and supports
  • Connection to instructional services
  • Connection to career and/or career exploration

In each area, the authors discuss students’ perspectives on the services that met their needs, key challenges they encountered, and suggestions for how colleges can be more proactive in anticipating student needs and engaging student learning.

Resource Details

Product Information

Format: PDF
Pages: 22
Publisher: WestEd