East Georgia State College (EGSC) is an associate degree granting, liberal arts institution providing access to academically transferable programs of study and targeted baccalaureate degrees at low cost to its students. As a unit of the University System of Georgia (USG) within the State College Sector, EGSC extends its access mission from its home campus in Swainsboro to instructional sites in Statesboro and Augusta. EGSC has been included on both of the U.S. Department of Education’s College Affordability and Transparency Center annually updated Lowest Tuition and Lowest Net Price national lists of four-year public colleges since July 2017.
EGSC began offering its initial baccalaureate degree, a Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree in Biology, in Fall Semester 2012 and has awarded the degree to 17 students. Since adding an Associate of Science (AS) Degree in Biology in Fall Semester 2017, 5 students have earned the AS degree.
The College launched its second bachelor program in Spring Semester 2016, a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree in Fire and Emergency Services Administration (FESA) and added an Associate of Arts (AA) FESA degree option in Fall Semester 2017. The FESA Program is based on the Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education (FESHE) curriculum created at the National Fire Academy. The FESA BA Degree has been awarded to 5 students and the FESA AA Degree has been awarded to 3 students.
A third baccalaureate program, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN Bridge) Degree, was launched in Fall Semester 2017. Two cohorts have completed the program since its inception and 23 students have earned their BSN Degree. Both the BSN and FESA programs are offered entirely online for the convenience of working professionals and are among the lowest cost programs of their type in the nation.
Consistent with its access mission and its Carnegie Classification as a Baccalaureate/Associate’s Dominant College, EGSC expanded the number of associate degrees it offers in Fall Semester 2017. Until that semester, the College offered an Associate of Arts Degree, Core Curriculum (AACC). In addition to the AACC, EGSC now offers 10 associate of arts and 5 associate of science degrees with disciplinary distinctions. These degree options encourage EGSC students to focus early on specific programs of study that are aligned with baccalaureate degrees offered by EGSC and other USG colleges and universities. In the first two years that these academic programs have been available, 172 EGSC students have graduated with associate of arts and 55 have graduated with associate of science degrees with disciplinary distinctions. (A list of EGSC’s degrees earned by program for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 fiscal years is presented in Table A1 in the Appendix.)
As presented in Table 1, EGSC enrollment peaked in Fall Semester 2011, but has declined in recent years.
Throughout the Complete College Georgia initiative (2012 to 2019), EGSC’s four largest demographic cohorts have been African-American (Black) Females; African-American (Black) Males; White (Non-Hispanic) Females; and White (Non-Hispanic) Males. A percentage breakdown by campus of these demographic cohorts for Fall Semester 2019 is presented below in Table 2.
|Fall 2019 Enrollment||Augusta||Statesboro||Swainsboro||High Schools||Online Only||Overall|
|Black or African American||33.7%||24.0%||34.4%||18.2%||25.1%||28.8%|
|White (Non-Hispanic Origin)||18.2%||24.4%||22.5%||48.5%||32.8%||24.8%|
|Black or African American||20.4%||18.8%||18.1%||9.1%||11.7%||17.4%|
|White (Non-Hispanic Origin)||13.6%||20.2%||15.7%||18.2%||19.8%||17.8%|
As indicated in Table 2, 46 percent of EGSC’s Fall Semester 2019 enrollment are Black students. This is consistent with the previous five fall semesters when EGSC’s enrollment Black student ranged from 45 to 49 percent of total enrollment. In contrast, the percentage of enrollment consisting of Black students for the USG State College Sector ranged from 29 to 32 percent for the same fall semesters. The characteristics of EGSC’s student body differ from that of the USG State College Sector in several other important ways. Over the fall semesters from 2014 through 2018, EGSC averaged fewer Asian (1 percent), Hispanic (5 percent) and white (43 percent) percentages of its student body compared to the sector’s Asian (4 percent), Hispanic (13 percent) and white (49 percent) students as average percentages of the sector’s student body.
For the same fall semesters, EGSC had a lower proportion of adult students at 7 percent compared to 13 percent for the sector. In contrast, the average percentage of EGSC full-time undergraduates was almost 80 percent compared to 66 percent for the sector over the same period. Even so, the average percentage of EGSC undergraduates who completed 30 or more credit hours in an academic year was 13 percent compared to 16 percent for the sector.
Similar differences between EGSC and the USG State College Sector extend to the first-time freshmen (FTF) fall semester cohorts in the proportions of African American, Asian, Hispanic and white students. However, the average percentage of FTF earning 30 or more credit hours in their initial academic year is 15 percent for both EGSC and the sector.
In the area of learning support (LS), EGSC percentages of both black and white FTF students who take both math and English courses in first academic year are higher than comparable average percentages for SC sector black (67 percent) and white (71 percent) for the Fall 2013 through Fall 2017 cohorts. However, EGSC (30.9 percent) lags SC sector (38.9 percent) in average percentage of LS English and math FTF who passed both math and English with a C or better during the same period.
EGSC has continued to diligently work on Momentum Year Projects and taken mindful actions to improve student success rates. Among the actions taken are:
EGSC has implemented a new Early Alert Policy, requiring faculty to alert the Retention Team when any student misses two or more classes or when students receive early warning grades by week five of the semester. The retention team includes counselors, the director of student conduct, the director of housing, a social worker on the faculty, and other faculty.
The Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning has begun working closely with the Chancellor’s Learning Scholars in the effort to train faculty on Mindset. This collaboration began with the Fall 2019 Faculty Workshop where the Faculty Learning Scholars held a half-day workshop to train faculty on how to cultivate a Growth Mindset during instruction. At some stage in this academic year, additional training on faculty mindset will be offered during the new professional development series, Faculty Academies.
EGSC is implementing in-house advising in the Swainsboro student housing facilities. The plan is to place a full-time academic coach in an office situated within a dormitory. The role of the advisor will include, but not be limited to, scheduling regular meetings with students to monitor class attendance and grades in classes, reviewing academic best practices (for example, time management and study strategies), providing academic consultations, and exploring career pathways.
The college will continue to participate in the Gateways to Completion (G2C) system initiative. The college has added three courses: Quantitative Skills-Reasoning (MATH 1001 & MATH 0097 – counts as one course, including support), English Composition I (ENGL 1101), and English Composition II (ENGL 1102). Work will begin to redesign these courses using standardized course design (MATH only) and incorporating high-impact practices into the design components.
The faculty have begun using Academic Action Plans as they consult with students who are at-risk of failure. These plans help to scaffold students’ persistence and self-management by providing insight into their academic goals, class attendance, and the number of missed exams and assignments. Additionally, students are provided with specific and unique actions that will enhance their academic achievement.
During the 2018-19 academic year, EGSC continued focused on the following four strategies to promote college completion:
Goal 1: Increase in the number of undergraduate degrees awarded by USG institutions.
As an open access institution, EGSC strives to serve all students that choose to pursue their education at the college. EGSC is disproportionately chosen by the most challenged students that need financial aid and/or have weak previous academic preparation. As a result, the college prioritizes supporting these students as they work toward degree completion via student assistance provided in the EGSC Academic Center of Excellence (ACE), support courses, mini-session offerings, advising, and many other methods.
Table 3 below is excerpted from Table A5 in the Appendix and shows the usage of the Academic Centers for Excellence (ACE) for AY 2018 and AY 2019 based on data drawn from GradesFirst. Course Success Rates are determined by students earning Cs or better in courses where they sought assistance from the ACE. In addition, Table A5 in the Appendix documents the increasing rates of course completion based on the percentages of credit hours earned to attempted since FY 2011-12.
*Note: The Swainsboro ACE Staff had a significant issue with EGSC students not checking into the GradesFirst kiosk. This creates insufficient data regarding utilization of the Swainsboro ACE.
|Term||Student Visits||ACE Usage (Minutes)||Student Success Rates|
Presented in Table 4 are the number of EGSC’s Fall Semester 2019 FTF broken down by whether they are first generation college students. Although the number of EGSC’s Fall Semester 2019 FTF is preliminary and subject to change, the overall percentage of 29 percent being first generation matches the percentage for EGSC’s Fall Semester 2018 FTF cohort. Also note that 40 percent of EGSC Fall 2019 FTF students took courses exclusively online. In addition, while the percentage of EGSC FTF being first generation was similar to that of the USG State College Sector at about 23 percent in Fall Semester 2015, the percentage of USG State College Sector FTF who are first generation has since declined to 18 percent by Fall semester 2018. As can be seen, EGSC now has 11 percent more first-generation students than the average for the USG State College Sector.
|Fall 2019 First-Time Freshmen||Augusta||Statesboro||Swainsboro||Online Only||Overall|
|% First Generation||26.5%||28.5%||29.6%||40.2%||29.4%|
|Not First Generation||133||319||292||49||793|
Presented in Table 5 below are the number and percentages of EGSC graduates since the 2012 academic year (AY) who received Pell grants and who were first generation students. Note that almost 45 percent of our graduates throughout this period received Pell grants and that there were higher percentages of first-generation graduates within the Pell category compared to the No Pell category. Table A2 in the Appendix presents the contents of Table 4 broken down by academic year.
|Pell and First Generation||Overall Number||Overall Percentages|
|Not First Generation||855||72.9%|
|Not First Generation||575||60.1%|
The academic year 2011-2012, including Fall Semester 2011, served as our baseline year for Complete College Georgia (CCG). The College set 2020 goals based on specific CCG measures. Presented in Table 5 below are baseline CCG metrics compared with the most recent results for the College. In Table 6, the progress of two beginning freshmen cohorts are tracked based on a larger cohort of first-time (FT) freshmen and a smaller first-time, full-time (FTFT) freshmen sub-cohort.
|CCG Measurement||Fall 2011 Base||EGSC Goal||Current Results||Students Tracked|
|3-Yr FTFT Graduation Rate||6.0%||20.0%||12.5%||EGSC FTFT Fall 2015 Cohort|
|1-Year FT Retention Rate||42.9%||65.0%||49.8%||EGSC FT Fall 2017 Cohort|
|1-year FT Retention + Transfer Rate||53.3%||75.0%||58.8%||EGSC FT Fall 2017 Cohort|
|Overall Course Success Rate||57.1%||70.0%||64.4%||EGSC Fall 2018 Students|
|Annual Number of Graduates||168||207 Ave||322||EGSC FY 2018-19 Graduates|
FTFT refers to First-Time, Full-Time Freshman; FT refers to all First-Time Freshman
As discussed more fully in Section 4, EGSC has developed tactics to resolve some of the issues that Most Challenged Students face with, for example, a Housing Academic Coach, promotion of 15+ to Finish, creation of peer tutors, and development of 8-week cohort classes.
Increase the number of degrees that are earned "on-time" (associate degrees in 2 years, bachelor's degrees in 4 years).
As described below, EGSC pursues varied methods to facilitate On-time Degree Completion from academic plans and software innovations to pathway emphases.
During Spring Semester 2018, two-year academic plans were prepared for each associate of arts and associate of science program of study. These two-year plans were distributed to all new students during the Fall Orientations conducted during summer of 2018. These plans are also being utilized by our returning students and made accessible online on the College’s website. Additionally, students were introduced to the Focus2 Career Assessment during Fall Orientations to aid them in choosing the appropriate program of study/transfer pathway for their work interests. A new math pathway was developed for students who are not STEM majors. DegreeWorks was reintroduced to all academic advising staff and faculty to promote consistent advisement. Four-year plans were developed for baccalaureate programs, and these plans also incorporated the appropriate math pathway for the major. Students were pre-registered for all Area A basic skills courses and for the courses listed in their degree plans for the fall term. Table 7 below, excerpted from Table A6 in the Appendix, summarizes the progress made in increasing the number and percentage of EGSC students taking 15 or more hours per semester. In addition, Table A7 in the Appendix documents the percent completion of overall credit hours earned based on credit hours attempted by semester from Summer Semester 2011 through Spring Semester 2019 and by mode of delivery.
|Term||Population||Full-time||Attempting 12-14 Hours||Attempting 15+ Hours||% of Population (15+ Hours)||% of Full Time (15+ Hours)|
|Fall Semester||First-Time, Full-Time Freshmen
|EGSC 2-year Graduation Rate (%)||USG State College
2-year Graduation Rate (%)
|EGSC 3-year Graduation Rate (%)||USG State College
3-year Graduation Rate (%)
Presented above in Table 8 are the two and three-year associate degree graduation rates for beginning fall semester freshmen (FTF) at EGSC compared to the USG State College Sector. The 2-year and 3-year graduation rates of EGSC’s fall first-time, full-time freshman cohorts have increased in recent years to those of the USG State College Sector. One contributing factor was the approval EGSC received from the USG and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC) to begin offering associate degrees to its EGSC Statesboro students in AY 2013-14. Prior to these approvals, the 60 percent of EGSC’s student body located in Statesboro had only one option, to transfer to another USG institution.
EGSC CCG graduation goal was to produce an average of 207 graduates a year between 2012 and 2020. As can be seen in Table 9 below, the number of graduates has surpassed that number for six consecutive years. Listed in Table 8 are the number of associate degree graduates, and the numbers of these graduates who earned their degree within two and three years, irrespective first term attended, first term full-time, or whether the student was awarded their associate degree by EGSC as a reverse transfer student after leaving the College. For example, 40 of the 295 students who were awarded an associate degree in AY 2019 were reverse transfer students. The table shows the increasing percentages of graduates who earn their associate degree in three years or less. The percentage of graduates who completed their associate degrees in two years increased from 37 percent in AY 2016-17 to 51 percent in AY 2017-18 and AY 2018-19. Those graduating with associate degrees in three years increased from 62 percent in AY 2016-17 to 77 percent in AY 2017-18 and to 78 percent in AY 2018-19. Table A3 in the Appendix presents the number and percent change from the initial base AY 2011-12 of associate degrees awarded each academic year to EGSC’s four major demographic cohorts.
|Academic Year||Total AY Grads||2-Yr Grads||% 2 Yr Grads of Total Grads||3-Yr Grads||% 3 Yr Grads of Total Grads|
Shorten time to degree completion through programs that allow students to earn college credit while still in high school and by awarding credit for prior learning that is verified by appropriate assessment.
As an access institution within the USG, EGSC seeks to expand post-secondary opportunities in its Southeast Georgia service area. Since substantial number of its students are first generation college students, the College encourages high school students to take college-level courses on EGSC campuses and on location at area high schools.
Recruitment activities during the 2018-2019 season included high school recruiter visits by our DE counselor, attending sponsored area high schools DE events and hosting DE events on our campuses (Augusta, Statesboro, and Swainsboro) and at our four off-site locations. EGSC targeted Columbia and Richmond county for additional DE offsite locations and established one in each for fall 2019. The ACE implemented remediation tutoring for students who missed the entrance score by 50 points or less that was very successful
EGSC’s dual enrollment (formally MOWR) program has grown dramatically since the beginning of its Complete College Georgia plan as presented in Table 10 below.
|Fall Semester Dual Enrollment||Number||Annual % Change|
The High school grade point average (GPA) for EGSC’s dual enrolled students during AY 2018-19 was 3.54 on a 4.00 scale. The overall GPA for the EGSC courses taken by dual enrolled students was 3.28 on a 4.00 scale.
EGSC will continue to use the dual enrollment program to encourage high school students to commit themselves to pursuing high education and graduating faster, as measured by increases in the College’s 2-year and 3-year associate degree graduation rates.
During fall semester 2019 EGSC enrolled 308 dual enrollment students, this represented a 25% (100 students) drop from fall 2018. Two of the high schools the College served in AY 2018-19 decided to send their students to different nearby institution (65 student headcount loss) and other feeder locations sent us less students than they have in previous years. Competition in our region for dual enrolled students has increased with Georgia Southern University lowering their standards to match ours and aggressive area Technical College’s recruitment efforts with lower admittance standards. The loss would have been greater, but we added two new locations this fall, and both are showing growth potential. One of the schools we lost for fall 2019 has reported they will return spring 2020 for at least one course. In the current competitive market for dual enrolled students EGSC needs to be more proactive in serving students in our service region. Next Steps:
Increase the likelihood of degree completion by transforming the way that remediation is delivered.
Support courses are increasingly essential to help EGSC freshman succeed in their first year as the data below shows. In addition to the varied sections offered as full semester courses, to encourage students to complete Area A of the Core Curriculum within their first year at the College, twenty percent of all English Composition I and II and the first college mathematics courses are being offered in 8-week sessions to facilitate daily interactions between faculty and students and increase success rates.
New math pathways have now been implemented at the College. In Fall Semester 2018, EGSC shifted Core Curriculum Area A math offerings from nearly 100 percent College Algebra to 66 percent Quantitative Skills and Reasoning and 34 percent as College Algebra. Students in non-STEM majors are placed in the Quantitative Skills and Reasoning course, while STEM majors continue to take College Algebra, if they meet the cut-off scores. This ratio will be examined each year to match the needs of our students. Presented in Table 11 below is an excerpt from Table A4 in the Appendix showing the success rates in MATH 1001 and MATH 1111 in the AY 2018 and AY 2019 fall and spring semesters.
|Semester||MATH 1111||MATH 1001|
The co-requisite programs in English and mathematics began on two campuses (Swainsboro and Augusta) in Fall 2014 and was expanded to the third campus (Statesboro) in Fall 2015. The alternative pathways model in mathematics has only recently been implemented in fall 2018 with the increased offerings in MATH 1001 Quantitative Skills and Reasoning and also MATH 1101 Introduction to Mathematical Modeling.
All Math and English courses are now offered in the co-requisite model, in keeping with USG policies. EGSC eliminated all Foundations Learning Support courses in the Spring 2018 semester and offered the entirety of its Area A Math and English courses via the co-requisite model.
In Fall Semester 2018, EGSC embraced the open access model with no admissions test scores required. Students without qualifying test scores (Accuplacer, SAT, and ACT) were automatically placed into co-requisite learning support courses in mathematics and English. Additionally, incoming freshmen were pre-registered for AREA A mathematics and English which resulted in up to 80% of the incoming freshmen (new freshmen without any transfer credit) taking both gateway courses the first semester of their freshman year (88% Area A Math, 87% Area A English). This resulted in a higher percentage of learning support students in Fall Semester 2018 taking co-requisite courses. Among new freshmen, 92 percent required Learning Support Math and 93 percent required Learning Support English. All of these are higher percentages compared to previous fall semesters since Fall Semester 2012.
As an associate degree dominant open admissions college, EGSC is committed to its access mission and will continue to assist those who need learning support.
EGSC continues to work on its delivery of co-requisite courses and plans to hire dedicated instructors for learning support and to deliver the learning support courses in the Academic Center for Excellence, where peer tutors can be embedded. EGSC has also standardized its approach to Quantitative Skills and Reasoning across sections. All sections not only use the same textbooks but use open-resource materials. In the past, poor success rates were partially due to lack of textbooks for students who could not afford them or who waited for the receipt of financial aid prior to purchasing the books. The use of open-source textbooks, especially in Area A Math, has saved our students approximately $114,962.25 (907 students in MATH 1001 * $126.75 for MyMathLab) in Fall Semester 2018.
During the 2019-2020 academic year, EGSC will focus on the following activities to increase student success.
EGSC continues to fulfill its access mission within the USG to provide opportunities for higher academic degree attainment. As presented in Table 12 below, over 300 former EGSC students have graduated with baccalaureate degrees from Georgia Southern University in each of the three most recent academic years. In each of these years, over 150 former EGSC students have graduated with baccalaureate degrees from other USG institutions, as presented in Table 13 below.
|Bachelor Degrees||AY 2013||AY 2014||AY 2015||AY 2016||AY 2017||AY 2018||AY 2019|
|Bachelor Degrees||AY 2013||AY 2014||AY 2015||AY 2016||AY 2017||AY 2018||AY 2019|
The members of the EGSC Student Success and Completion Team are presented below.
|Mr. Jim Beall||Associate Vice President for Academic Affairsfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Dr. Carlos Cunha||Dean, School of Humanities and Social Sciencesemail@example.com|
|Mr. David Gribbin||Director of Strategic Planning and Institutional Researchfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Mr. Mike Moran||Assistant Director of Learning Commonsemail@example.com|
|Ms. Karen Murphree||Director of Learning Commonsfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Ms. Brandy Murphy||Coordinator of Dual Enrollmentemail@example.com|
|Dr. Sandra Sharman||Interim Vice President of Academic and Student Affairsfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Dr. Jimmy Wedincamp||Dean, School of Mathematics and Natural Sciencesemail@example.com|