Contextualized College Transition Strategies for Adult Basic Skills Students: Learning from Washington State’s I-BEST Program Model

Wachen, John; Jenkins, Paul Davis; Van Noy, Michelle

Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) integrates the teaching of basic skills and technical content in order to accelerate basic skills students’ transition into and through a college-level occupational field of study.This innovative program model was developed by the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) in collaboration with the community and technical colleges in the state. At the time of our study, all 34 community and technical colleges in Washington State offered I-BEST programming in at least one workforce area, and there were approximately 150 approved I-BEST programs across the state. The study reported on here represents the final phase of a multi-year evaluation of the I-BEST model that began in 2009, conducted by CCRC in collaboration with the Washington SBCTC. Based on fieldwork undertaken in spring 2011 on 16 I-BEST programs at eight colleges, this report builds on CCRC’s earlier qualitative and quantitative research by seeking to understand those aspects of I-BEST that best support student learning, progression, and completion. In addition, the report considers the I-BEST student experience and evaluates the costs of I-BEST program delivery. The findings and recommendations highlighted below may be useful for funders, policymakers, and practitioners in other states who are considering transition interventions similar to the I-BEST model.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Community College Research Center
Community College Research Center, Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
April 2, 2014