2023 AIR Forum Cleveland, Ohio May 28 – June 2, 2023

Impact Sessions

Please note: All times are listed in U.S. Eastern Time Zone.

Tuesday Impact Sessions  

1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. (included with AIR Forum registration) 

The 2023 AIR Forum officially began on Tuesday, May 30 with a series of curated impact sessions focused on a wide range of emerging and important topics and issues with impact for everyone in higher education. These sessions were open to all registered AIR Forum attendees and included in regular AIR Forum registration. Impact sessions include lectures, panel presentations, and interactive discussions. Impact sessions are 90-minute sessions scheduled in two consecutive time blocks from 1:00–2:30 p.m. and 3:00–4:30 p.m.

Collaboratively Propelling Analytics

Tuesday, May 30 | 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 26 A-B 

AIR, in collaboration with EDUCAUSE and NACUBO, received a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a guide to help colleges and universities achieve the call to action issued in the Joint Statement of Analytics (changewithanalytics.com). Many institutional leaders want to build cultures of student-focused analytics, but they often aren’t sure what steps to take. Our emerging guide is designed as a collection of resources to assist in scaffolding institutions for data-informed decisions to be made at every level. Join us to hear from institutional business, IR, and IT professionals about how they are embedding analytics in their institutional cultures, and how the guide can assist in this work. Session participants will be encouraged to offer feedback based on their institutions’ needs, to inform the guide, which will be released in 2024. 

Tait Kellogg (Consultant), Bridget Miller (Arcadia University), Rashmi Radhakrishnan (Arcadia University), Joan Singleton (Arcadia University) 

Education Data in Federal Policy: A Look at 2023 and Beyond

Tuesday, May 30 | 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 25 A-C 

This interactive session will provide an overview and assessment of the current federal policy landscape in Congress and the Department of Education, with a focus on data, equity, and student success. Panelists will discuss as well as respond to audience questions on the potential impact of the regulatory agenda, current and prospective legislative proposals impacting today’s students, and intersections with the work of states and postsecondary institutions. The expert presenters represent organizations that serve a broad array of constituencies, all of which play a crucial role in policy development. 

Diane Cheng (Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP)), Bryan Cook (Urban Institute, Jonathan Fansmith (American Council on Education), Moderator: Christine Keller (Association for Institutional Research) 

Equity, Collaboration, Big Institutional Issues and the Role of IR 

Tuesday, May 30 | 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 26 A-B 

Higher Education is facing several large issues that are forcing us to rethink what we do and the way we do it. Demands for accountability from the public, declining enrollment, staff turnover, reduced budgets combined with social issues of justice, equity and human rights are changing the context of our work. Institutional research plays a significant role in addressing these issues from contextualizing the data to leading discussions and solution-oriented collaborations. Higher education cannot address these massive issues without the participation of institutional research, be it a Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness or an entry-level analyst. 

Ellen Peters (University of Puget Sound), Bethany Miller (Macalester College) 

How to Utilize Data to Become a Better Change Agent: A Case Study on FYE

Tuesday, May 30 | 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 1 

Higher education must take notice and act on national discussions regarding college value and improved student success rates. Storytelling through data to improve the student experience can be used by institutions to change the narrative and create an undergraduate experience that will benefit all students. Think back to your first-year experience (FYE). How did it make you feel? How would you characterize it? Evidence-based best practices and foundational components that can be utilized and applied in the development of a comprehensive FYE will be synthesized. A case study will illustrate how to leverage data to elevate and inform the creation of a FYE, focusing on the process by which institutional research (IR) can become involved in developing a FYE. We will demonstrate how to engage others with data, advocate for students in transition, nudge second-order organizational change, and enhance student success and outcomes. Learn to be a better change agent! 

Kristin McKinley (Lawrence University), Jillian Kinzie (Indiana University Bloomington), Brent M. Drake (John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education) 

Hub, Spoke, Fabric? CDOs’ Perspectives on the Role of IR in Data Strategy

Tuesday, May 30 | 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 1 

Chief Data Officers are becoming increasingly common on college campuses. As individuals tasked with developing and implementing a campuswide data strategy, CDOs have to rightfully understand the role of institutional research, and its place in the broader strategy. In order to fully realize the AIR/EDUCAUSE/NACUBO call to create “Change with Analytics”, finding the proper alignments and getting feedback from the IR community will be necessary for success. This session will discuss that very tension and highlight some lack of agreement among CDOs on this very issue. The goal is to help IR leaders and practitioners see their work in the context of a broader analytic strategy, and to begin a roadmap for CDOs facing a similar task on their own campuses. 

Brad Weiner (University of Colorado Boulder), Ravneet Chadna (University of Arizona), Olivia Kew-Fickus (Vanderbilt University), Benjamin Wiles (Clemson University), Katie Wilkinson (The University of Missouri) 

IPEDS Update 2023

Tuesday, May 30 | 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. | Meeting Room 25 A-C 

This session provides a general update on the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), annual survey collected by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) of the U.S. Department of Education. The following information will be presented: changes to the upcoming 2023-24 and 2024-25 collections, a brief overview of Research and Development, and a brief overview of major updates to IPEDS Tools and the IPEDS website. Note: an abbreviated encore presentation will be featured in the regular concurrent session line-up, as well as a separate session which focuses on the tools. 

Aida Ali Akreyi (National Center for Education Statistics)