Creating a Data-Informed Culture in Community Colleges

Creating a Data-Informed Culture in Community Colleges A New Model for Educators

Brad C. Phillips and Jordan E. Horowitz
paper, 208 Pages
Pub. Date: September 2017
ISBN-13: 978-1-68253-087-0
Price: $32.00

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Brad C. Phillips and Jordan E. Horowitz offer a research-based model and actionable approach for using data strategically at community colleges to increase completion rates as well as other metrics linked to student success. They draw from the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and behavioral economics to show how leaders and administrators can build good habits for engaging with data constructively.


Before your college spends thousands of dollars on the latest data system and tools, buy this book to find out how to use data you already have to better help your students succeed. It is packed with practical guidance based on the authors’ decades of experience helping colleges across the country improve student outcomes and institutional performance. — Davis Jenkins, senior research scholar, Community College Research Center, Teachers College, Columbia University

Phillips and Horowitz perform a great service, providing strategies and tools that help community college practitioners use data to discern where action is needed and whether that action makes a difference. The authors demonstrate an uncommonly nuanced understanding of issues on the ground as community colleges strive mightily to strengthen student success and equity in outcomes. — Kay McClenney, senior advisor to the President/CEO, American Association of Community Colleges

Brad C. Phillips and Jordan E. Horowitz highlight a critical point for college leaders: data without context does little to help us understand how to improve student outcomes. This book provides college leaders tools to visualize the most important trends in student data and allows them to make the most impactful decisions for improving the lives of our students. — Eloy Ortiz Oakley, chancellor, California Community Colleges

Armed with strong backgrounds in institutional research and effective educational leadership, Phillips and Horowitz provide educators with an excellent resource for improving academic success with proven data use strategies and practices for community colleges. — The Wabash Center Journal on Teaching

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About the Authors

Brad C. Phillips is President and CEO of the Institute for Evidence-Based Change (IEBC), where he leads the organization’s focus on improving educational practice and outcomes in schools, colleges, and universities.

Over the last twenty years, Phillips has pioneered the collaborative collection and sharing of data across educational segments, focusing on helping educators use data to make classroom and institutional changes that improve student success. His IEBC work ranges from the grassroots to national education associations and includes state higher education systems, national organizations, foundations, and professional associations as well as local and regional educational institutions.

Phillips served for a number of years as a community college educator, researcher, and program director and founded the California Partnership for Achieving Student Success (Cal-PASS). He serves as a data facilitator for Achieving the Dream, a member of the Advisory Board of the Texas Student Success Center, and Ambassador with the Leap of Reason national initiative.

A frequent keynote speaker, Phillips also has authored numerous articles on education issues. His work has been published in Education Week, Forbes, Good magazine, Community College Journal, New Directions for Community Colleges, Journal of Applied Research in the Community Colleges, American Educator, AACJC, Huffington Post, Medium, and Data Bus. He is the recipient of recognitions and honors for his innovative research and commitment to faculty involvement and student progress, including the Mertes Award for Excellence in Community College Research.

Phillips holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from California State University, Northridge, and a master’s degree in psychology from California State University, Los Angeles. Before pursuing his doctoral degree, he worked as a therapist in community mental health. He earned his doctorate in psychology with an emphasis in research methods and statistics from Claremont Graduate University.

Jordan E. Horowitz is Vice President at the Institute for Evidence-Based Change. He joined the organization in 2007. He has extensive experience in improving data use at educational institutions, educational partnerships, and comprehensive school reform. Before joining IEBC, he was Senior Project Director in Evaluation Research at WestEd, where he directed the evaluations of numerous local, state, and federal programs. Horowitz also worked as a psychotherapist in public and private practice.

Horowitz is responsible for developing and managing IEBC projects funded by private foundations and public sources, including: improving data use in California’s Linked Learning Initiative school districts; a review of Idaho’s Educational Technology and Data Systems in Support of Students’ College and Career Readiness; a national study linking postsecondary student and organizational data to inform the development of metrics for colleges and universities; and linking California’s educational and social service data systems to identify outcomes for foster youth in California; among others. He provides professional development and technical assistance to improve the use of data in educational institutions and among stakeholders.

Most recently, Horowitz authored two pieces for the online journal Medium that encourage philanthropy to adopt a more data-informed approach to giving: Getting Evaluations Right and Hack This! He also co-edited the January 2014 volume of New Directions for Community Colleges, which explored the nation’s college completion agenda, and coauthored a chapter about Data Use and the College Completion Agenda for the volume. He authored the book Inside High School Reform: Making the Changes That Matter. Other publications include Partnering for Successful School Reform, College Ready by Design, and The New Alignment: High School Exit Expectations and College Entrance Expectations.

Horowitz holds a BS in human development and public policy from Northwestern University and a MS in counseling psychology from the same institution. He also received a MA in applied social psychology from The Claremont Graduate School.

Table of Contents


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