Breakout Sessions


You will be able to select eight breakout sessions to attend during the conference.

Real-time Decision Support Dashboard Concepts

Vincent Jackson, Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness, Coastal Pines Technical College

Coastal Pines Technical College uses a locally developed real-time decision support dashboard system to track critical areas of college functions. Recent focus has been upon making application management more efficient by tracking applicants from the “incomplete to complete” stages of the process to enrollment. The CPTC dashboards empower faculty and staff by giving them all the information they need in one concise delivery system. Leadership can make better decisions by having this information constantly available in many formats, including emailed daily progress reports.

Leveraging Existing Institutional Resources to Develop & Organize Effective Evidence

Danielle Edelman, Research & Analysis Coordinator, Madison Area Technical College

Will present the evolution of one institution’s strategies for finding and managing evidence documents, with specific focus on advantages (and challenges) of creating a SharePoint database of evidence documents and effectively employing NCCBP data reports. The presentation highlights use of existing institutional resources to store and share accreditation evidence. The goals of the presentation are to provide three perspectives on how institutional resources (including at least SharePoint and participation in the NCCBP) can be used to create effective processes for collecting and organizing the evidence documents needed for writing accreditation documents. We will address this from three perspectives: Madison College Institutional Research Coordinator, Madison College Assurance Review Writing Team Member, and Director of the NCCBP, working to discuss both global planning of the processes needed and local execution of those processes while writing the Assurance Review.

How Tableau Can You Go?

Debbie Phelps, Executive Director of Institutional Effectiveness, Cowley County Community College

This session will introduce participants to Tableau, a software solution that could help your campus address problems in data sharing. Cowley College currently uses Tableau visualizations to analyze data trends for retention improvement strategies, academic program review and a host of other employee-requested needs. Session activities will include multiple examples of worksheets and dashboards plus a live demonstration of Tableau Online.

First Generation Students: Using Data to Create A College Going Culture

Lori Stofft, Vice President for Advancement, Arizona Western College

Through a bold strategic plan, and understanding our data, a cross-functional team has worked to create systemic changes that will help all students, especially our 66% First Generation students, persist and complete. This plan not only includes OER and Wrap-Around Services, Guided Pathways and HS Articulation, it also includes innovative Early College efforts like 18-and-under discounted tuition and a College Promise program. We’re also using data to seed innovation across our district, encouraging our colleagues to solve problems organically, in their area, with their team. Attendees will leave with tools to help teams think strategically, how administration can foster innovation, and how asking the hard questions can move your mission forward.

Using Data-Analytics to Assess Program Margins

Christine Weid, Director, Administrative Computing Services, Blinn College

David Armstrong, Director, BKD

In 2019, Blinn College engaged BKD to perform a Program Economic Analysis project. The project entailed gathering numerous data points, performing analysis and review, and entry into a data visualization tool. Institutional leaders were able to view data and understand the information to select programs to “start, stop, sustain, or grow.” The results enable leadership to assess academic program strengths and weaknesses. This case study explores the data collection process, key decisions, and walks through the tool used to support institutional leadership in improving operations.


  1. Describe how institutional leadership used program economics to evaluate programs to make better and faster decisions on which programs to “”start, stop, sustain, or grow.”
  2. Recognize the operational levers available to help improve contribution margins.
  3. Explain how data analytics were used to evaluate the demand and financial performance of academic programs.
Encouraging & Supporting Community College Scholarship

Darlena Jones, Director of Assessment & Research, Association for Institutional Research

Why is it important for you to participate in scholarship? The Association for Institutional Research (AIR) is a professional organization that empowers higher education professionals at all levels, in all sectors, to utilize information for decision making. And, while community college professionals participate in AIR educational opportunities at rates equal to 4-year institutions, representation by community college professionals in submitting program proposals, participating as a proposal reviewer, and participating in program sessions is much lower in comparison to 4-year institutions. Come to this session to discuss how we can work together to encourage and support community college scholarship at the local, regional, and national levels.

Rethinking the Strategic Plan: Focusing on The Metrics

Sara Leigh, Executive Director of Planning, Assessment & Improvement, Community College of Beaver County

How many of the goals in your strategic plan are difficult-to-impossible to measure? Frequently, so much focus is put on writing comprehensive goals that reflect the mission and vision of the institution that the methods of assessment for those goals are almost an afterthought. In this ever-growing culture of data-driven decision making and evidence-based accreditation processes, the Community College of Beaver County is flipping the paradigm on its head. By focusing on 5 key metrics, CCBC has developed a one-page strategic plan that will allow for consistent performance assessment at all levels of the institution, as well as an evaluation and budgetary process tied directly our 5 key performance indicators.

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Establishing key performance metrics for your institution
  2. Linking the strategic plan to performance assessment at every level – from the institution to the individual
  3. A model for holding administration directly accountable for student success
Artificial Intelligence – A Brief Overview

Charles Perkins, Dean of Institutional Research, Barton Community College

This session will review AI – Artificial Intelligence and ML – Machine Learning Data Science and will include the following topics:

  1. Definitions
  2. Data Science
  3. Machine Learning
  4. Artificial Intelligence
  5. The Future
Transforming Lives: Telling Our Story Through Graduate Salaries

John Clayton, Executive Director of Institutional Effectiveness, Johnson County Community College

How can community colleges better tell their story? Johnson County Community College partnered with Equifax to track students’ income for five years after leaving. Disaggregation of salaries by several qualifiers (ex. completion, financial need, program of study, highest math level) were assessed to tell the story of student success.

Igniting Analytics Initiatives with Teamwork

Lindsay Wayt, Director, Analytics, NACUBO

NACUBO’s 2019 Study of Analytics showed that a majority of college and university business officers want to see more importance placed on using analytics in all functional areas asked about. However, they also indicated cultural and capacity-related barriers impeding the use of analytics at their institutions. In order to build analytics capabilities, leaders across campus will need to work together. Modeling the importance of collaboration, AIR, EDUCAUSE, and NACUBO released a Joint Statement on Analytics, a call-to-action for higher education professionals with guiding principles for beginning (or continuing) efforts to use data and analytics for decision making. In this session, you will hear about the findings of NACUBO’s survey, learn the goals of the collaborative Joint Statement, and discuss how to begin translating this information to action.

Enrollment Tracking – Communicating to Campus Stakeholders

Natalie Alleman Beyers, Director of Institutional Planning Research, Johnson County Community College

Mark Gordon, Research & Data Analyst, Johnson County Community College

Reflecting on AIR’s Duties and Functions of Institutional Research, opportunities were identified to be better educators and strengthen partnerships through our campus enrollment tracking reports. We will discuss the history of our enrollment tracking reports, data elements being tracked, distribution and frequency of reports, what we are missing, and how they are used to better facilitate discussions across campus about enrollment. With shifting demographics and declining enrollments, it is more important now than in previous years that IR offices provide digestible enrollment data to campus stakeholders, making them aware of how enrollment is trending for any given semester and any point in time. Attendees will leave the presentation with an example of how one institution tracks and compares semester enrollments along with how the information is shared with campus stakeholders and regional community college colleagues.

Using Power BI to Validate Data Use for Accreditation

Charles Perkins, Dean of Institutional Research, Barton Community College

Here is a statement from Barton’s most recent Higher Learning Commission visit.

Data generating “engines” (such as the Office of Institutional Effectiveness) have been identified at Barton and help “fuel” the improved Strategic Planning processes. Significant resources have been allocated to grow IE from an office primarily tasked with collecting and reporting data to one that is more focused on the collection, analysis and interpretation of institutional data to support analysis, assessment, decision-making, management, and planning.

Barton County Community College – 1267 – Final Report – 10/5/2017

The session will highlight:

  1. How Power BI Apps help move from data to data information
  2. How Power BI tracks access
  3. How to create and name Power BI Apps in a logical manner
  4. Show various Power BI Visualizations and their applications
Aligning College-Career Pathways to Improve Outcomes

John Barnshaw, Vice President – Research & Data Science, Ad Astra

This session explores how institutions can align their college and career pathways (1) to retain and graduate students faster, (2) help ensure students have in-demand labor market skills, (3) partner with employers on internship and employment opportunities, and (4) align programmatic costs. By partnering with institutions, Ad Astra is leading the way to provide real-time, labor market insights to provosts, deans, faculty, and students on what skills are needed in the labor market, and how those skills can be reinforced in the classroom and across campus.

Upon completion of this session, attendees will have a clear understanding of (1) how guided (college) pathways help retain and graduate students faster, (2) how labor market skills can be integrated into the curriculum, (3) how to leverage labor market opportunities, and (4) how to align program costs to improve program health.

The NCCBP First-timers Dilemma: What I Wish I Knew Then That I Know Now After Submitting Data!

Lacey Proksch, Institutional Research Specialist, Western Technical College

Louis Shedd, Director of Institutional Effectiveness & Research, Shelton State Community College

Any data collection has its quirks and challenges, and NCCBP is no different. Conventional practices say that sometimes you must go through a process one or two times to get organized. Two first-time submitters from different institutions will present their learnings and take-aways and share tips and approaches that they have developed or wish they’d developed to make submission easier and less stressful. The goal of this session will be to share approaches that may improve the collection process for both new and experienced members.

Building Your IR Professional Circle

Natalie Alleman Beyer, Director of Institutional Planning Research, Johnson County Community College

Having the support of people with similar interests and passions greatly enhances chances of success. It is important to have a good support network that you can bounce ideas off of and get feedback from. Over the past couple of years Institutional Research professionals from three community colleges in a shared region started to meet every other month. Topics would include enrollment updates, reporting requirements, interpretation of definitions, accreditation, software tools as well as current issues/priorities one may be experiencing. In addition to the regional group, the same efforts were made to create a recognized state community college council. While this started as an idea to provide one voice related to data requests, it has resulted in a new network of IR professionals across the state. Attendees will leave this session understanding the importance of building a profession circle, especially as it relates to consistent collaboration of IR professionals.

Incorporating Benchmark Data into Your Institution’s Reporting

Daniel Chupe-O’Hanlon, Institutional Effectiveness Analyst, Austin Community College

While benchmarking your institution’s performance against national results and peer groups can be of tremendous benefit to your institution, it’s hard to manage internal and other required reporting, let alone an external project. Learn how Austin Community College participates in various external benchmarking projects and how they incorporate the data – including NCCBP data – into their dashboard along with examples of how it is used. Attendees will learn about using a variety of benchmark and internal data to create an institutional dashboard. Examples of Austin Community College’s dashboard will be presented and discussed.

Cost and Revenue Analytics: Exploring Key Considerations and Data Elements to Enable Advanced Financial Management on Your Campus

Mark Lemon, Manager, Grant Thornton

Due to unprecedented pressures stemming from increased operating costs, decreased federal and state funding, and an increasingly competitive marketplace to attract and retain talented students, many higher education institutions are being forced to more actively manage their financial resources. Cost and revenue analytics are a great way for institutions to get a better understanding of their financial position, identify key management challenges, and design and deploy effective solutions. Developing such a model can be daunting – a number of factors influence model design, each with implications on the model’s complexity and precision of output. An optimal model will address key management challenges and deliver desired reporting outputs, without significant design and maintenance requirements. This session will outline key considerations to support the design, implementation, and deployment of a cost and revenue management model that fits intended needs.

This discussion will provide audience members with a proven frame of reference and approach to take back to their institution in order to engage with stakeholders and consider implementing a model. Audience members who have already implemented a model on their campus can take the “standardized” principles discussed and adjust their model in line with the standards.

Supporting Measurement Efforts with Benchmarking Data

Dianna Renz, Associate Vice President for Planning & Effectiveness, North Idaho College

Writing a self-study? Trying to measure mission fulfillment? Need to assess progress in your strategic plan? Providing support for SLOA work? With its comprehensive focus, NCCBP provides a rich source of nationally comparable data to assist with institutional assessment, from accreditation to program outcomes. Join Dianna to see how NCCBP can support your measurement efforts throughout the institution.

Corequisite Learning – What Have We Learned & What Does It Mean?

Courtney Schoolmaster, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, South Louisiana Community College

This session will explore the implementation of the co-requisite learning model for both English and Math sections from a mid-sized SACSCOC institution. Tips for coordination, communication, implementation and analysis of results will be shared through the institution’s experience of taking the model from pilot to growth stage.

You will be able to select eight breakout sessions to attend during the conference.