Pre-College Programs Recommendations
Introduction and Executive Summary
Pre-college experiences—camps, competitions, programs, events, and other engagements with IU faculty, staff, and coaches—are often the first interactions potential future students have with Indiana University Bloomington; these prospective students are engaging with IU from their elementary to middle school to early high school years. An opportunity to engage with IU on campus in a pre-college program environment helps the participants to understand what it is like to be on a college campus. These experiences foster a sense of confidence regarding their ability to negotiate a large university, and the program content helps to build affinity for IU and what IU has to offer future students in both general and specific ways.
The immediate challenge now facing our pre-college programs during summer 2020, and perhaps in future terms is—given the social distancing in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic—how does IU continue to engage students, help them experience IU, and share what IU has to offer in an online environment? We currently have 62 programs listed on the pre-college.indiana.edu website for in-person programming, as well as a number of pre-college and outreach opportunities offered for elementary- and secondary-age students throughout the academic year. As of this report, we have nine programs listed as virtual experiences online. This written recommendation will share the synergistic ideas discussed in three committee meetings and one subcommittee meeting for the Pre-College Programs COVID Taskforce Group.
Although the goal of the committee was to develop online programming quickly for summer 2020, the longer-term benefits of this initiative included greater activation of the campus during the summer by creating more programs and an enhanced variety of programs. Recommendations also included the potential for new partnerships and collaborations between disciplines that have not previously worked closely together. Thus, our efforts were guided by both a need to swiftly move existing pre-college programs online, and to identify new programs, as well as to create a programming structure that could be carried into the future with expanded resources, program support, and enhanced marketing.
The members of the Pre-College Programs Task Force Group are:
- David B. Johnson (Chair), Vice Provost for Office of Enrollment Management
- Mike Beam, Senior Assistant Vice Provost, Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education
- David Brenneman, Director, Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art
- Brenda Brenner, Chair, Department of Music Education, Jacobs School of Music
- Deb Christiansen, Executive Director of Academics, Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design
- Carl Darnell, Director, Balfour Scholars; Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, School of Education
- Janine Drake, Clinical Assistant Professor, History, College of Arts + Sciences
- Leanne Nay, Digital Engagment Librarian, IU Libraries
- Sacha Thieme, Assistant Vice Provost and Executive Director of Admissions, Office of Enrollment Management
- Yolanda Trevino, Assistant Vice President for Strategy, Planning, and Assessment, Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Multicultural Affairs
- Teresa White, Director, High School Journalism Institute, Media School
Charge to the Committee from Provost Robel
This group will ensure that the campus continues to provide online pipeline and academic programming for K-12 students (primarily high school); keeps the OPEN campus program available online; develops additional pre-college programs; provides benchmarks for quality in delivering these programs; and considers the needs of the pre-college populations in campus pandemic planning.
Current/Existing Pre-College Programs
According to the Pre-College Programs website maintained by the Office of Admissions, IU Bloomington typically offers 62 different summer programs. Most are designed for middle and high school students, although 16 are listed as programs for elementary students and two are for preschool students. In response to COVID-19, the home page of the website prominently features a link to established pre-college programs that have moved online for Summer 2020. As of May 19, seven programs were listed on this site. Additionally, two Media School programs have recently opened enrollment for virtual camps and will be listed on the site soon, bringing the total to nine virtual pre-college programs.
The current pre-college program website assigns programs to one of seven interest areas:
- Academic opportunities
- College preparation
- Languages, humanities, and culture
- Music, dance, and theatre
- Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM)
The following programs have made the transition to online:
- Balfour Pre-College Academy (School of Education)
- MEET Kelley (Kelley School)
- Young Women's Institute (Kelley School)
- Ballet Summer Intensive (Jacobs School of Music)
- Pre-College Harp Program (Jacobs School of Music)
- Hoosier Debate Camp (O'Neill School)
- 21st Century Scholars (OVPDEMA)
- High School Journalism Institute (Media School)
- IU Game Development Camp (Media School)
Keeping the OPEN Campus Program Available Online
The OPEN program has continued to support and enroll high school students in on-campus and online courses throughout the COVID disruption. In fact, the increase in availability of online courses this summer has enabled students to enroll in a virtual class who could not have otherwise taken an on-campus course due to scheduling conflicts, distance from campus, or other logistical impediments. Although there are challenges—in particular with classes at the Jacobs School of Music—these have been met with creativity, and the campus will continue to support local students through the program. In fact, the increase in virtual sections is viewed positively by the OPEN program and plans are in place to encourage greater numbers of students to take advantage of these courses.
Developing Additional (New) Pre-College Programs & Engagement
We identified a need to provide a wider variety of options for summer program offerings, especially in the arts and sciences, and to leverage the creative work of existing programs such as the Arts & Humanities Council. This will require recruiting efforts in the future to enlist program ideas from colleagues in a variety of disciplines not currently represented. Initially, we decided to move forward with the disciplines represented by the members of the task force committee.
In planning new offerings, the committee encourages program developers to consider why students choose to participate in certain pre-college programs. Students may seek opportunities to improve skills, to increase knowledge, to explore interests, or to enrich their lives. A pre-college program should focus on meeting the goals of one or multiple participant needs. However, all programs provide opportunities to advance the IU brand by connecting the people and places of IU with program participants. Engagement with IU makes our large public university feel more connected, and allows participants to become part of a community through shared experiences. Therefore, it is important that online pre-college programs find ways to replace at least part of the face-to-face campus experience with virtual tours, live video conferences, and other content that allow participants to feel they have experienced IU Bloomington and are part of a community.
Below are programs the committee believes are possible for implementation for summer 2020, after consultation with faculty and staff in various schools and departments.
Pre-College Micro-Intensive Freshman Seminar Courses
Intensive freshman seminar courses are designed to quickly engage students in the deep study of unique topics. The topics engage and sustain the imagination of new students over an intense two-week period, and as such could be effectively re-imagined as a series of virtual micro-courses (1-3 modules). These micro-courses could be made available as a pre-college opportunity.
- The objectives of the micro-courses are
- To give pre-college students a glimpse into the kinds of exciting topics that the faculty and students at a university study, research, and innovate
- To create excitement for college
- To showcase IU’s strengths directly, and begin to create affiliation with IU faculty and departments
- To provide the university with feedback about participants—feedback that can support recruitment, advising, program development, etc.
- Emerging topics include
- Arts Of War
- Beauty and Power
- Black Dance Is/Black Dance Ain’t
- Economics of Major Epidemics
- Exploring Otherness
- Food for Thought: Food Policy from Local to Global
- Foundations of the American Experience for International Students
- Games as Systems as Life
- Happy Hoosiers: Exploring Nature, Heritage and Health
- Psychopaths: Born or Made?
- Soundtrack to Revolution: Music and Social Movements
- The Science of Psychoactive Drugs
- Thinking, Writing, and Talking about Music
- This is Your Brain on the Media: How Video, Music, Podcasts & Games Capture Your Attention and Play with Your Emotions
- Through the Looking Glass: Theory, Identity, and Dress
- What is America?: Finding The Wire—Two Americas
- Culture and Revolution in Paris, 1850-1900
Jacobs School of Music
- Mindfulness with Frank Diaz (single class or short series)
- Eric Lindsay (ask him to prepare one of the following series)
- Music and Multimedia (5 units/3 weeks each or a single class)
- Remixing Class
- Electric Dance Music Production
- The Beatles (or other topic of his choice) with Glenn Gass
School of Education
- College, Culture, and Careers: Carl Darnell, Ph.D. (three units/four sessions each)
- Career Readiness and Stress Management/CBT: Rebecca Martinez, Ph.D. (two to four sessions)
- Tips and Strategies for First-Generation College Students: Tina O'Neal, Ph.D. (single session)
- d) The Science of Conversations: Jessica Lester, Ph.D. (mini-course: multiple 30-60 minute sessions)
- Jumpstart Your Research: This program will prepare incoming freshmen and high school students to engage in research projects as undergraduates
Cultural enrichment and college-readiness programming from a variety of faculty and staff from OVPDEMA could be leveraged.
- 21st Century Scholars Pre-College Academy: Paying for College & Navigating ScholarTrack and Century Scholar Enrollment Workshops with Julia Jennings
- Community and School Partnerships Passport Pages with Julia Jennings
- What does it mean to be Latinx on Campus? with Lillian Casillas
- Indiana: Land of the Indians with Nicky Belle
- Diversity in Native American Cultures with Nicky Belle
- Studying Abroad with Ochmaa Escue
- Black Excellence at IU with Monica Johnson
- Got Privilege? with Monica Johnson
Arts & Humanities
- Plug-in tours, video features, & paired content
- Examples could include the following:
- Tours of the Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design’s studios and facilities and the provision of a related art-making prompt or studio demonstration (similar to Getty Art Museum Challenge)
- Connect Eskenazi Museum of Art content to an existing online program (for example, connecting EMA's "Facing the Revolution" exhibition with Kelley Young Women’s Institute)
- Use existing Arts & Humanities Council content like virtual studio tours with faculty/graduate artists, then add related Eskenazi Museum content (photography, graphic design, or architecture)
- Pair Eskenazi School’s fashion design with theatre and opera costume design; pair set design with studio art or comprehensive design
- Video/timelapse glimpses into studio processes or materials in the making of a work (Mad Lab video processes or tours)
- "How is it made?" video demonstrations showing depth of an object (both academic and process) could be applied to many items like a teapot, table, or apparel item, with faculty giving base knowledge and a demonstration
- Folded light art or mask folding (Jiangmei Wu, Interior Design) with art-making prompt
- Examples could include the following:
- Professional Profiles
- Interviews with disciplinary experts in the Media School for High School Journalism Institute
- Pre-recorded panel discussion with Eskenazi School program faculty
- Multi-Disciplinary Panels
- Possible sessions focused on arts and humanities topics, include a variety of disciplines such as the Eskenazi Art Museum, Art History, Eskenazi School (ie. museum careers or artist practice, each participating staff/faculty shares a current authentic project)
- Pre-College Look Club: For this club, the Eskenazi Museum of Art would offer several sessions of art-viewing opportunities and art-making demonstrations
Support and Resource Initiatives for Current and Developing Programs
The committee agreed that creating online programs can be a daunting task, especially during a pandemic and on a tight timeline. To facilitate the creation of more online pre-college programs for summer 2020, the committee recommends that units collaborate to produce micro-sessions—short, focused programs that participants can complete in approximately an hour. For example, a collaborator from IU Theatre could join a faculty member from the Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design to create sessions about costume or set design. The development of micro sessions for summer 2020 could initiate a catalog/menu of offerings that show how academic theory informs concrete applications. Such collaborations would demonstrate to potential students a rich blend of IU resources, creative and intellectual pursuits, and potential career fields while also strengthening cross-campus partnerships.
Another way to support and facilitate the development of more pre-college programs is to make available a resource bank of templates, strategies, checklists, supports, and tools. This resource bank could be a website, cloud storage, or a Canvas module. Established pre-college programs, IFS, the Office of Admissions, OVPDEMA's Community and School Partnerships Program, and IU Culture Centers could contribute material to the resource bank. New program directors could connect with experienced directors who could answer questions, share best practices, or mentor when needed. The committee recognized that support for pre-college programs should extend to those that operate during the academic year and on weekends (for example, Science Olympiad). In short, the committee decided that more infrastructure to support current and future pre-college programs would be highly beneficial.
- Technical resources
- Zoom—though there are potential privacy issues, Zoom is a widely used platform accessible to anyone with internet connectivity and a mobile, laptop, or desktop computer. For more than 200 participants, program planners should consider Zoom webinar; features differ slightly between the two platforms. For more information: https://zoom.us
- Google Meet—This is the business version of Google Hangout, and is free for all during the coronavirus outbreak. Google Meet has been enhanced to better serve large teams during the pandemic. Multiple high school classrooms around the state of Indiana are using a version of Hangout called Google Classroom. For more information: https://support.google.com/meet
- Microsoft Live—Microsoft Teams features a video call function that can include people from both inside and outside of the organization; it is designed for staff meetings and smaller groups, although hosts can invite up to 250 participants. Microsoft 365 Live can broadcast to 10,000 people and has distinctive features for broadcast producers, presenters, and attendees. Events are recorded and transcribed, and the software is intended for keynote addresses, town halls, or moderated panels. For more information: microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/
- On-campus resources
- Gamification: Chabane Maidi, Adjunct Lecturer, Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering
- IU Expand: Peter Ermey, UITS Principal Online Instructional Designer
- Canvas: Rod Myers, School of Education Instructional Consulting Lead
- General technical assistance and setup: UITS
- Access to online resources such as e-books, articles, and streaming video: IU Libraries
- Steering Committee A Pre-college Steering Committee will be formed from members of the COVID Task Force PreCollege Programs Group to ensure ideas listed in this report are implemented, and that the direction and goals of the pre-college program at IU Bloomington are achieved.
- Benchmarking and data collection
- Partner with Bloomington Assessment and Research and Judy Ouimet in OVPUE in the development of an assessment tool to measure the effectiveness of virtual experiences. Part of the best-practice protocol would be to require every provider to administer a participant satisfaction survey. Results could be used to determine the effectiveness in the experience in achieving its goals; confirm program mode of instruction matched student development needs; develop understanding of why some programs were most popular; and identify areas for future content/program development.
- Data collection template is provided for all existing pre-college programs by the Office of Admissions to collect student participant data in a manner that can be directly uploaded to CRM for recruitment and future data analysis.
- Guidance for course designs and objectives
- Short sessions
- Hybrid of asynchronous and synchronous activities
- Consideration of time zone differences in scheduling synchronous activities
- Engagement increases if participant is intrinsically motivated
- Design should be responsive to mobile media platforms
- Use of certificates or badges to incentivize
- Other considerations
- Course navigability
- Course design that is rigorous
- Creating a sense of community with a group of similarly prepared students
- Appearance of the program materials
Pre-college Programming and Continued Safety Precautions
Pre-college programs connect IU to external partners and primarily to minor children. Compliance requirements for Programs Involving Children, as well as Revenue Generating Programs, are assumed. However, the introduction of significant virtual pre-college activities (virtual group work, connections, access to materials in collections, etc.) introduces the need for a review and clarification of security and safety protocol necessary to ensure the safe participation for minor children in online settings, and to mitigate risk for the institution. Additionally, since pre-college programs occur throughout the calendar year, new in-person safety and health related protocols must be made clear and embedded within all pre-college program implementation. This includes a plan for training/awareness for the many external-to-IU partners that pre-college programs utilize in program design and delivery (high school coaches, parents, teachers, tutors, sponsors, and other experts).
In response to these emerging conditions and needs, the Pre-college subcommittee suggests that all staff directing or facilitating any pre-college programming complete the following:
1) training and regarding measures to ensure safe engagement of minors in virtual programming;
2) training regarding up to date COVID related safety protocols necessary for on-campus activities (we cannot assume that IU staff will be able to intuitively apply general campus protocol effectively to specific pre-college activities); and
3) formal affirmation that all IU staff and external partners are trained and compliant with the necessary safety protocols, that designed programming adheres to the safety protocols, and that all participants are provided the policies and procedures (including a non-compliance policy).
Access to internet and devices
The committee determined that online programming should use responsive web design because Pew Research Center reports that adolescents and young adults view their smartphones as their primary device for accessing internet. Many people have access through smartphone data plans even if they do not have internet or WiFi at home. Additionally, a significant number of people living in rural areas have unreliable or no traditional internet service at home. Unlike people living in urban areas, they cannot readily access free WiFi. If they do have internet service, family members may have to share access to a computer for work, school and entertainment purposes. The committee also discussed alternatives to online programs, suggesting that WTIU's Kids Zone may be a good partner in providing pre-college programs. Additionally, the Kimberly and John Simpson Center for Education at Eskenazi Museum of Art has successfully partnered with Indiana classroom teachers, including in IU Rural Engagement Communities, to share programming with pre-college students.
- Internal (faculty, staff, and departments)
- Program Development
- Partner with IU Studios to provide resources that incorporate IU awareness and brandbuilding into course designs and content
- Canvas site with resources and models for best practice when developing new content.
- Partner with schools/College to communicate offerings available for content development support within their programs and departments
- Program Promotion
- Partner with IU Studios to promote among campus marketers and through communications such as InsideIU
- Leverage recruitment and marketing councils and communities within each school/College
- Partner with schools/College to communicate offerings with faculty and staff to generate broad awareness and leverage word of mouth channels and networks
- Students and families
- Partner with IU Studios to relaunch digital marketing campaigns
- Direct email campaigns for students and parents/guardians
- Promote with visiting students and families during campus visit programs, including special group visits coordinated with individual high schools and community-based organizations
- Reformat current print piece into self-mailer to be sent to student home
- Consider alternative media channels such as WTIU/WFIU which may reach families with limited internet resources
- Promote through teacher organizations
- Partner with ACP instructors to promote content that could be applicable for course plans and source new ideas for content that would be most helpful
- Partner with IUAA/IUF and School of Education to promote through IU Alumni who are teachers
- School Counselors
- Promote through counseling community organizations
- Promote through direct email campaigns using Office of Admissions national counselor list
- School Administrators
- Partner with AVP for School Partnerships to promote with school administrators around the State of Indiana Community-based and Faith-based Organizations
- Leverage Office of Admissions sourced mailing lists of organizations throughout the U.S.
- Students and families
- Program Development
The charge of this committee was to ensure that the campus continues to provide robust PreCollege Programming; the committee was charged with developing various online opportunities from current and newly designed pre-college programs. This programming focused on the OPEN campus program, IFS, and significant content from various schools and departments.
The committee recommends using Canvas to develop a resource guide of content, learning and teaching resources. By leveraging the pre-college.indiana.edu website as well as collaborative partnerships, the committee set forth a plan to expand marketing, communication, and awareness among internal and external partners.
To continue this work in the future, whether programming is face to face or online, current providers are encouraged to consider alternative modes of delivery that encourage rich expansion of content as well as improved participation.
In conclusion, the initial emphasis of the committee was to identify additional opportunities for online summer programming and to provide sufficient support and resources for programs and departments in program development. The committee also recognized that significant opportunity exists to provide ongoing support for pre-college programs offered during both the fall and spring terms, as these programs will likely need to consider alternative or hybrid program models in response to the evolving COVID-19 situation. Thus, the resources, support, and promotion of the ideas listed within this report can be applied to current and future opportunities to sustain the prospective student pipeline.