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Press Release for Wednesday, March 14, 2012

UNF Participates in New College and University Policies Study

Media Contact: Joanna Norris, Associate Director 

Department of Public Relations 

(904) 620-2102 



The University of North Florida is among eight public and private Florida universities—all National Survey of Student Engagement participants—that will participate in a new study “Linking Institutional Policies to Student Success (LIPSS),” which seeks to determine whether and which institutional policies might be leveraged to improve college student persistence and graduation rates. 


College and university administrators have long struggled to identify and implement institutional policies that foster student success in a way that is both cost effective and consistent with the latest research findings. NSSE is widely used to assist institutional policy makers with this task.  


As a study participant, UNF will receive national recognition as a foundational participant in the LIPSS project and will receive a campus report that compares policies at UNF to those at other institutions as well as free participation in a Web-based presentation of the project’s results. 


“UNF is thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in external benchmarking that will help the University target our efforts, and we are equally delighted to assist other institutions by our participation in the project,” said Judith Miller, executive director of Assessment and chair of the NSSE Planning Team at UNF. The NSSE Planning Team, comprised of UNF faculty, staff and administrators, has been working for months to identify ways to use the University’s NSSE survey data for institutional improvement.  


NSSE is a national survey that asks freshmen and seniors to report on how often during the prior academic year they have engaged in activities that are known, through research, the result in learning (for example, participating in class, reading books that weren’t assigned, writing papers of 20-plus pages, talking with faculty outside class, having serious discussions with students of different racial or ethnic groups).  


The University is using the NSSE results for campus and academic improvement. For example, since the results of the last UNF administration of the NSSE survey, the University has instituted a redesign of the UNF Freshman Experience, including changes in the University’s residency policy, first-year curriculum and student life.  


 Over the past 30 years, hundreds of specific initiatives have been designed to facilitate student engagement during their first year of college—a time during which four-year colleges and universities lose an average of 26 percent of their beginning students. Although these efforts have improved outcomes at countless institutions, such initiatives are often costly and typically serve only a small group of students who participate directly in a given program.  


For more information on the LIPSS project, visit .