The IT College and CAREERS Readiness Project: Career Academy Research on Educational Experiences and Related Successes

The IT College and CAREERS Readiness Project: Career Academy Research on Educational Experiences and Related Successes

SUMMARY

One thousand National Academy Foundation (NAF) Information Technology (IT) students participate in California, Florida, and Oklahoma urban career academies.


DESCRIPTION

This project will advance efforts of the Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) program to better understand and promote practices that increase students' motivations and capacities to pursue careers in fields of science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) by engaging in hands-on field experience, laboratory/project-based entrepreneurship tasks and mentorship experiences.

This ITEST project involves the University of South Florida, in collaborations with the National Academy Foundation, and three high school career academies, to study the impact of participation in the career academy model implemented by National Academy Foundation under different levels of implementation fidelity. The goals of the project are: (a) to examine the nature of organizational and implementation elements (mission, curriculum and instruction, internal and external supports) of information technology (IT) career academies with different levels of fidelity; (b) to determine student experiences in National Academy Foundation IT career academies with different levels of fidelity; and (c) to document indicators of college and career readiness (engagement, performance, transitions) of students in National Academy Foundation IT career academies with different levels of fidelity in comparison to National Academy Foundation students in non-career academies. The project will rely on extant student-level data from the dataset and comprehensive site visit data to meet the project.

The primary focus of the proposed research is to study the impact of participation in the career academy model implemented by the National Academy Foundation under different levels of implementation. Using a mixed methods approach, the project will be driven by three research questions: (1) What is the nature of organizational and implementation elements (mission, curriculum and instruction, internal and external supports) of IT career academies with different levels of fidelity? (2) What are the student experiences in NAF IT career academies with different levels of fidelity? (3) What are the indicators of college and career readiness (engagement, performance, transitions) of students in NAF IT career academies with different levels of fidelity in comparison to students in non-career academies? The project will identify the characteristics of students in the advanced technological field of engineering technology their academic pathways, career goals, and school-work-life balance issues that impact their decisions to enroll in and complete courses, return for further coursework, and/or pursue a certificate or a degree.

PROJECT MEMBERS

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PROJECT DETAILS

Award Number: 

1614707, 2016580

PROJECT DURATION:

2016 - 2021

Category: 

Organization(s): 

University of South Florida Tampa, FL

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Project Status: 

Active