2018 Pre-Conference Workshops

Pre-conference Workshops are intensive, skill building half-day and full-day sessions offered Monday, May 28 and Tuesday, May 29. Seats are limited and an additional fee is required (see prices listed below for members and non-members).

You may add workshops only if you have purchased a full Forum registration.

MAY
28

Monday Full-Day (8:00 AM - 4:00 PM)


Best Practices for Reporting and Using IPEDS Data to Improve Office Efficiencies ($25 member / $25 non-member)

Presenters: Braden Hosch (Stony Brook University), Joseph Stankovich (Skidmore College)

This recently redesigned workshop provides intermediate-level keyholder training, and is specifically designed for individuals who have led IPEDS data submissions at their institutions for at least one full reporting cycle. It features best practices in IR, as well as technical efficiencies in data management through Excel and in review and submission of IPEDS survey data. The workshop expands on the use of IPEDS data for benchmarking to address key institutional questions and needs. Participants should have experience with the "Use the Data" section of the NCES website, and a working knowledge of Excel. Note: IPEDS survey component submission instructions and basic benchmarking concepts are not covered in this workshop.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Wi-Fi capability and Microsoft Excel installed.


Using Power BI as a Platform for Data Visualization and Online Dashboards Part I and II ($240 member /$300 non-member)

Presenter: Marcus Brewer (University of North Georgia)

In an ever-increasing digital world where access to information is rarely beyond one's own fingertips, institutional researchers must transition from their tired reliance on spreadsheets and pivot tables and acclimate to visual reporting and interactive dashboards. In this hands-on workshop, participants will not only be captivated by Power BI's functionality with Microsoft Excel but also by the ease with which their spreadsheets can be transformed into visually stunning and interactive dashboards. By utilizing sample datasets, this workshop will guide the participant through the essential elements of the DAX programming language; the creation of intermediate-level data measures; the integration of R visuals into your BI report; and the use of modeling. While the subject material of the workshop necessitates a certain amount of lecture-style teaching, the majority of the workshop will be spent in group exercises, guided demonstrations, and general discussion.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Gain awareness of an easy-to-use data visualization platform and become skilled in data manipulation, report formatting, and data visualization methodology;
  • Acquire the skills to make significant improvements in their approach to data reporting, both within the institution and on their IR webpage;
  • Gain the knowledge necessary to direct and guide others from their institution in the usefulness of Power BI;
  • Learn how to use the DAX programming language to make significant improvements to their use of data measures and modeling;
  • Acquire the skills to make meaningful connections between multiple student-based data sets, thus allowing them to utilize course records, student academic records, and student demographic data into a single report; and
  • Gain the knowledge necessary to train and guide others at the institutional-level in an effort to encourage data literacy across their campus.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with access to Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Power BI installed. (Power BI desktop can be downloaded and installed for free through www.powerbi.microsoft.com.)

Monday Half-Day Morning (8:00 AM - 11:30 AM)


Comprehensive Curriculum Mapping for Learning Outcomes Assessment ($120 member /$150 Non-member)

Presenter: Yongmei Li (Converse College)

Student learning outcomes assessment is crucial for institutional effectiveness. Curriculum mapping, a prerequisite for program learning outcomes (PLOs) assessment, provides a way to align PLOs with curriculum. Typically, a curriculum map comprises PLOs, courses required for completing a specific academic program, and levels of learning for each course (i.e., introductory, reinforced, and mastery). However, it is unclear to what extent course learning outcomes (CLOs) align with PLOs and measures used to assess each CLO. This session focuses on using simple and comprehensive curriculum mapping to align curriculum with PLOs, CLOs, and measures. The presenter will share a template and examples and will guide the participants through developing and evaluating curriculum maps from an evaluator's perspective. Participants will leave the session with techniques to construct and evaluate curriculum maps at their own institutions.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Define each component of simple and comprehensive curriculum mapping;
  • Develop a curriculum map;
  • Evaluate a curriculum map; and
  • Apply the techniques learned to develop and evaluate a curriculum map at their own institutions.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


Finance Fundamentals for the IR Professional ($120/$150)

Presenter: Rebecca Barber (Arizona State University)

Many IR offices shy away from analyses that involve dollar signs. We may know all the details of our enrollments, but as soon as we multiply that by our tuition rates, many IR professionals start to feel out of place. Very few institutions have IR-type skillsets embedded within their finance organizations, and few IR professionals have learned how to read financial statements or use the IPEDS Finance data to benchmark their institution. Yet, there is a need within the budget and finance space to have exceptionally data literate professionals who can assist with analyses that impact an institution's bottom line, and there is a need within IR to show not just the effectiveness of interventions but also their cost effectiveness. This workshop is intended to bridge that gap. Attendees will learn the terminology and tools of financial analysis, the perspective of finance organizations, and how to use financial data to benchmark their institutions.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Learn the terminology of finance, accounting and budget;
  • Increase their knowledge about how to read and make sense of an institutions financial statement;
  • Enhance their ability to use IPEDS Finance survey data to benchmark their institution;
  • Identify what conditions may require going outside the IPEDS finance data for benchmarking purposes and what alternatives exist; and
  • Leave with examples of benchmarking that can be done for an institution using both IPEDS Finance data and other financial data sources.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel installed.


Forecasting in Excel ($120/$150)

Presenters: Wendy Kallina (Kennesaw State University), Eric Atchison (Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning)

As institutions focus on enrollment management, the ability to understand and project patterns of change is imperative. Providing timely and accurate forecasts to campus stakeholders assists in the planning and development of physical, academic, and human resources. This workshop continues the conversation that began in AIR's webinar "Basics of Forecasting" and through pre-work exercises in Excel. Examples of curve-fitting and causal models of enrollment forecasting will be examined, including trend lines, exponential smoothing, moving averages, and linear regression. For information on viewing the prerequisite webinar affiliated with this workshop, visit www.airweb.org/EducationAndEvents.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Understand the history of enrollment forecasting in higher education;
  • Gain the knowledge and skills to implement various enrollment forecasting models;
  • Learn about limitations and other considerations when considering an enrollment forecasting model; and
  • Learn about additional resources available to assist in the forecasting process.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel and Excel Data Analysis Toolpak installed.


Visualizing Survey Data in Tableau ($120/$150)

Presenter: Craig Abbey (University at Buffalo)

In this workshop, participants will learn how to use Tableau to visualize survey data through a series of hands-on exercises using higher education data. Attendees will acquire the skills to transform survey data; create a variety of basic and advanced visualizations; build basic calculations; work with weighted data; and build interactive dashboards they can share with their campuses. Consideration of audience, small cell sizes, and design best practices will be discussed. Perfect for those with some Tableau experience who want to visualize survey data, this workshop will help participants gain Tableau expertise.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Create data visualizations for survey data;
  • Learn how to use basic table calculations and customize tool tips;
  • create visualizations for Likert, Yes/No, and Check all that Apply Data;
  • Lean how to suppress visualizations with small N's; abd
  • Create visualizations to show satisfaction vs. importance.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop that is loaded with either this trial version or with your own Tableau license (if you already have one). AIR will provide participants with a trial version of Tableau in advance of the workshop.

Monday Half-Day Afternoon (12:30 PM - 4:00 PM)


Building an Institutional Culture of Evidence: Applying the Information ($120/$150)

Presenters: Ann Gansemer-Topf (Iowa State University), Julie Wren (University of Oregon)

In this workshop, participants will apply information learned in AIR's "Institutional Culture of Evidence" webinars to their own institutions and settings. They will identify relevant skills, resources, and stakeholders within their institutions, assess their contexts, develop outlines for next steps, and craft processes for monitoring progress and success. This event provides opportunities to interact with other professionals and experts to share best practices and strategies for overcoming obstacles. For information on viewing the prerequisite webinar affiliated with this workshop, visit www.airweb.org/EducationAndEvents.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Identify unique aspects of their institutional culture (including stakeholders) and how these aspects may influence their ability to build a culture of evidence;
  • Assess skills and resources needed to build a culture of evidence within their own institution;
  • Develop a short-term plan for building a culture of evidence that includes first steps and approaches for monitoring progress; and
  • Receive feedback on their plans from presenters and participants.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


Building Your IR Crystal Ball: Predictive Analytics with Tableau ($120/$150)

Presenters: Christine Plepys (Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health), Emily Burke (Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health)

If you were to find Aladdin's lamp, what would your three wishes be? Increased enrollments? Improved graduation rates? An IR Crystal Ball? This workshop is Aladdin's lamp, and it will give you the tools you need to build your IR Crystal Ball. Your IR Crystal Ball will be crafted over the course of this workshop during which attendees will learn about predictive analytics, forecast modeling, and machine learning through an instructional component followed by an interactive component using Tableau. Attendees will build a dashboard that connects to IPEDS data in order to predict future national and institutional admissions, completions, and graduation rates. Attendees will implement forecast modeling; learn how to create calculated fields; develop filters and parameters; select appropriate data visualizations; and apply best practices in dashboard design and formatting. Attendees will have a complete dashboard at session's end to share with other attendees and take back to their institutions.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Learn the basics of predictive analytics and forecast modeling;
  • Build a dashboard that uses IPEDS data to conduct forecast modeling;
  • Gain the skills to use Tableau to create and apply filters and parameters, create calculated fields, select appropriate data visualizations, and apply best practices in dashboard design and formatting; and
  • Collaborate with other IR professionals to identify and share higher education predictions.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop that is loaded with either this trial version or with your own Tableau license (if you already have one). AIR will provide participants with a trial version of Tableau in advance of the workshop.


Create Powerful Results with Data Visualization and Exploration ($120/$150)

Presenters: John Berry (SAS), Tuesdi Helbig (Western Kentucky University)

Are you living with data in spreadsheets? Are your data in systems across multiple departments in different forms? Do you wish users could answer questions themselves, producing compelling output with an easy-to-use interface? Would you like to be able to provide insights about your students you never thought to investigate? If so, this workshop is for you! Come to this hands-on workshop with SASĀ® and Western Kentucky University to learn how to explore and analyze institutional data, create compelling visualizations, and use sophisticated analytics such as decision trees, on-the-fly forecasting, and scenario analysis. You'll also gain experience with combining data from different data sources and preparing data. Whether you are new to analytics or are experienced in statistics or data science, powerful analytics are at your fingertips.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Experience first-hand how SAS Visual Analytics will save them time, allowing them to more easily accomplish their data preparation and reporting tasks; and
  • Learn how this will allow them to extract deeper insights from their data by enabling them to use embedded analytics to understand correlations, run forecasts, examine what-if scenarios, and create predictive models.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with SAS Visual Analytics and SAS Enterprise Guide installed. AIR will provide participants with a link to download a trial version of this software in advance of the workshop.


Developing a Procedure to Effectively Check Data for Errors ($120/$150)

Presenters: Kirsten Skillrud (Higher Education Data Sharing (HEDS) Consortium), Adrea Hernandez (Higher Education Data Sharing (HEDS) Consortium)

IR professionals work on countless data sets and numerous reports, and they must do so while ensuring the quality of these data because inaccuracies can lead to fines, poor data-driven decisions, and even embarrassing public blunders. Naturally, having data-quality procedures in place and using effective techniques to check these data are critical. The presenters aim to demonstrate how to devise a procedure with multiple techniques that make use of Excel formulas and features in order to ensure quality, error-free data sets and reports. The presenters will also demonstrate formulas and features to use in Excel to check for suspicious data and discuss when to use the techniques and why it is helpful to use them. Participants in this workshop will develop procedures that they can implement at their institutions to ensure that they are reporting error-free data. Participants will also be able to execute various techniques in Excel in order to highlight suspicious data in their own analyses.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Develop drafts of procedures that contain a series of techniques for checking a particular report or data set for data errors;
  • Create various formulas and use features in Excel in order to highlight unusual or suspicious data; and
  • Determine which Excel formulas and features can help identify errors in the data for different kinds of variables and calculations.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel installed.


Introduction to Institutional Research ($120/$150)

Presenters: Eric Atchison (Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning), Melanie Sullivan (Providence College)

This workshop is designed for individuals who are new to the field of institutional research (IR). In this workshop we review the typical roles and responsibilities associated with IR, highlight useful resources, and learn how to develop connections with others in the field. This is an informative and interactive workshop that is useful to new IR professionals.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Gain an understanding of common projects and responsibilities in institutional research;
  • Be able to identify useful resources to aid in their work and professional development; and
  • Learn how to develop relationships with other professionals in the IR field.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


Practical Strategies for Designing and Sustaining an Assessment Process ($120/$150)

Presenter: Felix Wao (University of Oklahoma)

The principal purpose of assessment is continuous improvement of student learning. However, in most higher education institutions, the design and implementation of the assessment process, as well as the outcome of the process are often linked primarily to compliance with external requirements such as accreditation and/or state mandates. This approach renders the systematic enhancement of student learning and programmatic improvement as simply a byproduct of the assessment process. This presentation provides practical strategies for developing, implementing, and sustaining a systematic institutional assessment process aimed primarily at cultivating a culture of continuous improvement of student learning, while at the same time, addressing accountability needs.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Develop and implement an integrative institution-wide assessment process;
  • Identify strategies for engaging faculty in development of evidence-based assessment process in a research university; and
  • Align the assessment process with components of external mandates.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


The Art and Science of Enrollment Forecasting ($120/$150)

Presenters: Francis Doherty (James Madison University), Christopher Orem (James Madison University)

This workshop will describe and demonstrate best practices in forecasting enrollment and FTES by academic level, residence, and location for institutions of any size, mission, and complexity. A combination of presentation, small group activities, discussion, and hands-on exercises will be used. Participants will be introduced to an Excel enrollment-projection model (no sophisticated knowledge of complex statistical analysis tools needed) that has been successfully used to project headcount and FTES enrollment in a large (20,000+), public, diverse, and comprehensive university. The model can be adapted to institutions of any size, mission, and complexity. This model is not designed to project how many new students will attend an institution, but to forecast how they will progress, hopefully, to graduation.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Gain a historical perspective on forecasting (what works and doesn't work in higher education and elsewhere);
  • Gain knowledge of forecasting principles that work in any field, including politics and baseball;
  • Learn the potential pitfalls to avoid when listening to forecasts by different types of constituents (those who know what they're saying and those who think they know what they're saying); and
  • Learn appreciation for the need to understand the institution and its students (the art); and practical suggestions for working with campus constituencies.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel installed.

MAY
29

Tuesday Full-Day (8:00 AM - 4:00 PM)


Tableau Fundamentals for the IR Professional ($240 member /$300 non-member)

Presenter: Craig Abbey (University at Buffalo)

In this workshop, participants will learn the basic features and functions of Tableau through a series of hands-on exercises using higher education data. Attendees will acquire the skills to connect to data, filter data, create a variety of visualizations, build basic calculations, and build interactive dashboards they can share with their campuses. Additionally, mapping data, organizing data, and working with data will be covered. Perfect for those with a little or no experience, this workshop will help participants gain Tableau expertise.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Increase the knowledge of Tableau terminology;
  • Learn how to connect to multiple data sources;
  • Gain the knowledge to filter, sort and group data; format, convert and bin data; create data visualizations; and use basic table calculations;
  • Learn how to map geographical data;
  • Enhance their ability create dashboards and stories;
  • Become familiar with parameters; and
  • Learn how to use and customize tool tips.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop that is loaded with either this trial version or with your own Tableau license (if you already have one). AIR will provide participants with a trial version of Tableau in advance of the workshop.

Tuesday Half-Day Morning (8:00 AM - 11:30 AM)


Building a Narrative Via Evidence-Based Storytelling ($120/$150)

Presenters: Natasha Jankowski (National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment), Gianina Baker (National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment)

This workshop builds on initial discussions held at the AIR Forum 2017 on the concept of evidence-based storytelling. To begin crafting their own evidence-based story, participants in this workshop will review various tools and lessons learned from the Excellence in Assessment (EIA) designation narrative proposals; the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) Transparency Framework; AIR's aspirational statement; and the approach of organizational digital narratives. By pulling examples from the field and engaging with participants on how to move reporting and transparency towards effective communication, this workshop will assist participants in moving IR into a more central role of meaning-making. Participants will leave with a refined narrative to communicate meaningfully about their work.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Become aware of tools and resources available as they work to prepare their own evidence-based story;
  • Engage in peer discussions to support revision of their institutional story; and
  • Understand their role in building an evidence-based story.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop capable of running Microsoft Office, mainly Word.


Building an Effective Assessment Process ($120/$150)

Presenters: Ross Markle (Educational Testing Service), Andrea Lynch (James Madison University)

To effectively understand what students are learning and, more important, what can be done to improve student learning, institutions must understand assessment as a process, not a thing. Admittedly, foundational concepts of validity, reliability, and fairness are at the core of the inferences institutional researchers make about students, but it is just as important to build effective processes that help institutional researchers capitalize on good measures of student learning. IR must always seek to turn data into information, and information into action. This workshop will focus on an effective process of assessment, including critical features, common pitfalls, and keys to an effective implementation in practical settings.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Participants in this session will: Identify the key components of a quality student learning outcomes assessment process;
  • Describe the relationship among assessment process components;
  • Compare and contrast various forms of data in an assessment process; and
  • Evaluate an assessment process.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


Conducting a Quality Survey Research Project ($120/$150)

Presenter: Darlena Jones (Association for Institutional Research)

This workshop is an extension of AIR's webinar "Do's and Don'ts in Survey Research" and presents the principles of survey research, explores the traits of quality survey instruments, and provides practical tips for reporting. Participants new to survey research will not be overwhelmed, and those needing a refresher will find useful tips. Learn from a seasoned researcher on ways to incorporate survey research into your data collection. For information on viewing the prerequisite webinar affiliated with this workshop, visit www.airweb.org/EducationAndEvents.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Construct a survey research question and write survey questions linked to that research question that have sufficient quality;
  • Articulate how to collect high quality survey data by defining the population, setting a timeline for the survey collection period, and identify appropriate validity/reliability tests;
  • Describe simple validity tests that can be conducted to help verify a quality instrument and to verify quality data;
  • Articulate how to write a quality executive summary that showcases the survey research results.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


Introduction to SPSS Syntax ($120/$150)

Presenter: Yuxiang Liu (Yeshiva University)

Data analysis is critical to IR, and one of the basic skills institutional researchers need is to effectively use a statistical software package. This workshop is designed for new institutional researchers or anyone who would like to learn the SPSS syntax. SPSS is one of several major statistical packages used in institutional research. The workshop will provide hands-on experience for the commonly used SPSS commands and procedures, including running frequencies, cross-tabs, and descriptives; formatting or creating variables; giving variable or value labels; reading data from files of other formats such as SAS, Stata, Access, Excel, and text; joining multiple data files; aggregating data; running the index; and running macros.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Gain the knowledge of SPSS syntax so that they can perform data manipulation and analysis effectively;
  • Learn how to use SPSS syntax to accomplish the common tasks at institutional research office, such as calculating student retention and graduation rates, calculating GPA, tracking student progress, etc.; and
  • Understand how to cross-check data, identify data errors, and maintain data integrity.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop capable of running IBM SPSS software. AIR will provide participants with a link to download a trial version of this software in advance of the workshop.


IPEDS Student Financial Aid Training ($25/$25)

Presenter: Braden Hosch (Stony Brook University)

This workshop provides foundational training for completing the IPEDS Student Financial Aid Survey using an integrated approach to managing, storing, and extracting financial aid data required for survey completion. Topics include an overview of financial aid concepts and how they intersect IPEDS, how to effectively create frozen data files from enrollment and financial aid systems, how to use these files to answer the respective sections of the survey, and how the files can be leveraged to address additional reporting requirements such as the Common Data Set and internal reporting. The workshop concludes with exercises focused on how IPEDS financial aid data are used for external purposes as well as for internal benchmarking.

Participants in this workshop will:

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Wi-Fi capability and Microsoft Excel installed.


IR's Dash to Dashboarding: Enhanced Topics in Excel Dashboards ($120/$150)

Presenters: Richard Hetherington (Temple University), Merima Babic (Temple University)

IR offices have a unique perspective on key university information and should therefore become a more involved strategic partner in presenting key university metrics. While there are several dashboarding tools on the market, most require significant financial and IT resources, which many IR shops may not have. This session will provide the tools and techniques necessary to develop robust, interactive dashboards using Excel, covering much more than standard pivot charts and bar charts. It will provide a hands-on, example-based workshop exploring enhanced visualizations; multi-worksheet interactivity; integration with existing data extraction scripts and output files; criteria-selection methods; dynamic conditional objects and formatting; year-to-year scalability; distribution methods; and just enough VBA to add enhanced functionality and security.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Participants in this sessions will:
  • Receive a crash course in dashboard design fundamentals;
  • Learn advanced topics in Excel in order to develop robust interactive dashboards; and
  • Develop a working dashboard that can be used as a starting point for their institutional dashboards.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel installed.


Program-Level Student Learning Outcomes Assessment: An Evaluator's Perspective ($120/$150)

Presenter: Yongmei Li (Converse College)

Academic program assessment, especially student learning outcomes assessment, is crucial for institutional effectiveness. The major components of program-level student learning outcomes assessment include program mission, program-level student learning outcomes, measures, target achievement levels, results, and use of results. This workshop will focus on what each component is and how to do each component in order to effectively assess student learning outcomes at the program level. Participants will also learn how to assess the quality of each component. The presenter will share a template and examples of a program-level student learning outcomes assessment. Participants will leave the session with strategies to apply to program-level student learning outcomes assessment at their own institutions.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Define each component of program-level student learning outcomes assessment;
  • Construct a program-level student learning outcomes assessment report;
  • Evaluate a program-level student learning outcomes assessment report; and
  • Apply the techniques learned to develop and evaluate program-level student learning outcomes assessment at their own institutions.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


R for IR: A Brief Introduction for Institutional Research Professionals ($120/$150)

Presenter: Brendan Dugan (Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research)

This workshop kindly and briefly introduces analysts to the open-source statistical programming language, R. R's capacity to flexibly handle a wide variety of common IR tasks, from data cleaning to reporting, makes it an ideal tool for analysts. Attendees will work through foundational concepts for working with R, from vectors and environments to simple functions and mathematical operations to control structures. Attendees will also work through the basic stages of research: data import, cleaning, and manipulation; hypothesis testing; and reporting and visualization. R syntax, data files, and resources for further learning will be provided. Participants do not need prior R or other programming experience, but familiarity with Excel functions and other statistical software syntax (SPSS, MATLAB, SAS, Python, Stata) is beneficial. R and RStudio should be installed prior to the workshop.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Learn the foundational concepts, syntax and conventions, and broad utility of the statistical programming software R, necessary for further learning and application in a professional setting;
  • Identify strategies for learning R, discover resources for further learning and reference, and hone troubleshooting skills for issues bound to arise in learning and using R; and
  • Develop a greater understanding of data manipulation, statistical testing, and basic data visualization using R. As broad in scope as these topics are, only a few, but fundamental, examples will be covered.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with R and RStudio installed.

Tuesday Half-Day Afternoon (12:30 PM - 4:00 PM)


Advanced Topics in Forecasting ($120/$150)

Presenters: Eric Atchison (Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning), Wendy Kallina (Kennesaw State University) David Mongold (University of Hawaii System)

During this half-day (3-hour) workshop, participants will take a deep dive into forecasting techniques with review of multiple forecasting methods pulled from published literature as well as advanced statistical modeling. We will explore the link from enrollment to tuition-revenue forecasting, using an Excel-based tuition-revenue model. This workshop will introduce the concepts, provide a walk-through example, and then move into a hands-on segment where participants will use the enrollment forecast created in the preceding portion of the workshop (or one provided, as needed) to build the tuition-revenue forecasting model. This is a stand-alone workshop, and participants do not need to have completed the Enrollment Forecasting Workshop I to participate.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Understand the variety of methods for forecasting enrollment in higher education, including advanced statistical models;
  • Gain knowledge about how enrollment forecasts may be used to inform other projection models, with a focus on tuition revenue forecasting;
  • Learn about limitations and other considerations when considering tuition, revenue and enrollment forecasting models; and
  • Learn about additional resources available to assist in the forecasting process.

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel installed.


Assessment Dashboard in a Day with Power BI ($120/$150)

Presenters: Frederick Burrack (Kansas State University), Christopher Urban (Kansas State University)

This workshop will walk users through transforming assessment data into interactive dashboards that enable faculty, staff, and administrators to more deeply engage with direct assessment results. Data preparation, model creation, and report design will be shown using provided sample data files. To fully engage with the session, participants will need a Windows laptop with the free Power BI desktop client installed.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Create interactive reports and dashboards from direct assessment data;
  • Learn techniques for preparing assessment-related data for visualization;
  • Experience how data tools can be used to automate data extraction, transformation, analysis and reporting; and
  • Utilize key functions of Power BI, which can be adapted to many uses within and outside assessment.

Note: Participants of this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Microsoft Excel and Power BI installed. (Power BI desktop can be downloaded and installed for free through www.powerbi.microsoft.com.)


Garbage In, Garbage Out: Designing a Sustainable Assessment Model ($120/$150)

Presenter: Divya Bhati (College of Charleston)

The intent of the assessment process is to enhance programs and services, and also to meet increased calls for credibility and accountability. Institutions have to develop the required infrastructure to instigate real change and establish a culture of assessment to meet strategic goals and accreditation standards. This workshop provides tools that can be used to foster a culture of continuous improvement. These tools include identifying key components, building capacity to engage in assessment, and sharing "add-ons" to sustain and nurture the assessment practice. Participants will work through hands-on exercises to create a toolkit to take back to their institutions.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Learn to describe the components of an effective and sustainable assessment model;
  • Develop a deeper understanding of use of results, strategies of staff, administrators, and faculty engagement; and
  • Gain the knowledge to explain how institutional commitment translates into necessary resources.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.


IPEDS Human Resources Training ($25/$25)

Presenter: Sandra Kinney (Georgia Institute of Technology)

This workshop prepares individuals to accurately complete the IPEDS Human Resources (HR) survey. It is designed for IR and human resources professionals, as well as other researchers or administrators who want to increase their understanding of these data. Topics include preparing data to increase consistency within the survey, understanding data definitions, classification of employees and alignment of employee function with Bureau of Labor Statistics Standard Occupation Classification (SOC) codes, coordination of effort between stakeholders in and outside of an institution, and planning for efficacy of data beyond the IPEDS HR survey itself. Exercises cover classifying employees properly, preparing for and completing the IPEDS HR survey, and benchmarking with commonly used employee metrics.

Participants in this workshop will:

Note: Participants attending this workshop are required to bring a laptop with Wi-Fi capability and Microsoft Excel installed.


Student Satisfaction Inventory: How to Best Use the SSI on Your Campus ($120/$150)

Presenter: Julie Bryant (Ruffalo Noel Levitz)

The Student Satisfaction Inventory is used by hundreds of colleges, universities, and community colleges each year to capture levels of satisfaction and the importance students place on those areas. The SSI is a comprehensive assessment that captures the student experience inside and outside of the classroom. The SSI data inform institutions of their internal strengths and challenges, compare them with external benchmarks, and allow for longitudinal trend analyses. This workshop will provide institutional researchers with guidelines for analyzing and presenting the satisfaction data, including examples of deeper data dives and charts for communicating results. Suggestions will be shared on which data elements are most relevant for enrollment management teams, student affairs offices, and academic affairs offices. Participants will be encouraged to share their own examples of what is working on their campuses.

Participants in this workshop will:

  • Learn a variety of methods for analyzing and presenting their Student Satisfaction Inventory data on campus;
  • Receive suggestions for maximizing the data for use by a variety of departments and initiatives on campus;
  • Benefit from a targeted event specifically for institutional researchers to get their data-analyses questions answered; and
  • Gain knowledge from the presenter's more than 20 years of satisfaction assessment expertise as well as the ideas from their colleagues also working with student satisfaction surveys.

Note: Participants are not required to bring a laptop to this workshop.