The big day is here! It’s time for the NCAA to announce the top 25 college football teams in the hunt for the College Football Playoff. And every year we look at this event through a slightly different lens—Eduventures’ Student Success Ratings.
As in past years, we used our Student Success Ratings to score nearly 100 universities across the seven big football conferences and made our “picks” for national rankings, bowl games, and the championship. Only time will tell if the game on the field can match the important work in the classrooms of these universities. It’s our Student Success College Football Playoff!
Ranking by Student Success
We looked at every team in the top football conferences that are likely to contribute the greatest number of teams to the actual playoff picture. These included: the American Athletic Conference (American), Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten, Big 12, Mountain West, PAC-12, and Southeastern Conference (SEC).
Some teams that made it into our playoff picture are less illustrious names on the national football scene; some are champions on the field and off. Let’s see the results of our fantasy football league.
Figure 1, ranking each team based on its Eduventures Student Success Ratings, shows the whole story. (For more information about our method of rating institution performance on improving student retention and graduation rates, read more here).
Figure 1. Source: Eduventures 2019 Student Success Ratings
Student Success Playoff Bracket
If the NCAA top 25 was based on scores for student success rather than football wins and losses, this season’s College Football Playoff would look like Figure 2, where the University of South Florida (USF) Bulls are champions .
In winning the Eduventures Student Success National Championship, University of South Florida (USF) rose above the other semi-finalists, the San Diego State Aztecs, the Auburn Tigers, and the Boise State Broncos—all football and student success powerhouses. (In the real world, each of these three teams also stands a good chance to make the actual NCAA top 25 today.)
A mixture of traditional football powerhouses and underdogs continues when we look further down our Eduventures Top 25 to see the eight additional teams that would make it to our New Year’s weekend bowl games. Fresno State, Texas Christian University (TCU), and University of Utah (Utah) get relatively easy bids, while rivals University of Florida (Florida) and University of Georgia (Georgia) just get in. Three ACC teams, Florida State, University of North Carolina (UNC), and North Carolina State round out the competition.
Florida State holds the high score in the conference at 73 and Boston College (BC) holds the low score at 56.
For the final piece of the puzzle, we’ll look at how each conference is doing as a whole. Figure 3 shows the low, high, and median Eduventures Student Success Rating within each of the seven dominant football conferences. Although USF is the overall institutional champion, the ACC is the conference champion, with a median student success score of 63 across all teams in the conference. Florida State holds the high score in the conference at 73 and Boston College holds the low score at 56.
In contrast, the Big Ten is bringing up the rear when it comes to student success scores among football schools with a median score of 55—Northwestern is holding the top position (64) and Ohio State is claiming the bottom (40). Where might your institution stand among these benchmarks? To find out, have a look at Eduventures’ Student Success Ratings.
At the outset, we called this our fantasy league, but in our true fantasy, many more schools would be able to improve their student success performances more quickly and more consistently. The Eduventures Student Success Ratings identify institutions that do so; they provide insight into which institutions are best practice institutions for others to learn from.
For the moment, at Eduventures, it’s another season of Student Success football gone by rather quickly! Only time will tell if the scores on the field will match up to the student success scores. We’ll follow the progress and let you know.
Wednesday November 20, 2019 at 2PM ET/1PM CT
We often overlook library management systems in discussions of higher education technology. Unfortunately, doing this allows us to miss valuable lessons that library technology leaders have addressed. Unlike the world of enterprise IT (student information systems, etc.), library management leaders have developed exciting ways to handle decentralized technology ecosystems and manage integration between solutions. In this webinar, we will compare and contrast the prevalent implementations of enterprise IT and library management solutions.
Learn more about our team of expert research analysts here.
Also in Student Success
The first fall semester of the COVID-19 pandemic is over, and according to over 5,000 freshman respondents in the Eduventures Student Experience Survey, it wasn’t how they imagined college. A striking one out of five students said they were—at best—unsure about their...
In last week’s Wake-Up Call, we shared the first two of four higher education predictions for 2021, forecasting an enrollment recovery and an end to the academic program “arms race.” This week, we tackle predictions three and four:
At the recent Eduventures Summit Virtual Research Forum, I presented an eye-popping chart showing the longstanding surge in higher education instructional and student services spend this century. Instructional spend at public four-year schools grew 140%, but student...