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Creating a trauma-informed college model for improving student success
Tucker, MarkPerez, Dilcie D.
This study developed an equity-minded and trauma-informed model for improving community college student success rates. Since nearly all community college students have experienced trauma, it was imperative to establish a comprehensive approach to overcoming the resulting non-academic barriers and low completion rates. Since there is no existing research-based trauma-informed college model, the study used a case study, qualitative research design and grounded theory methodological approach. The study’s participants included 23 employees (nine staff, eight faculty, and six administrators) from different areas of a southern California community college. Semi-structured interviews were utilized with unscripted follow-up questions based on the participants’ responses. Grounded theory methods were applied to analyze the data and identify open, axial, and selective codes. The study’s results include two essential elements, “trust at all levels” and equity-mindedness, as well as five primary themes, including institutional responsibility and top-down buy-in, alignment and integration of initiatives, ongoing professional development, individual commitment, and universal design. When presented together, the results create the Trauma-Informed College Model, which is a campus-wide culture of care and holistic support. Research findings can be utilized as a checklist for creating change at the system-wide and individual community college levels.
San Diego State University
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) San Diego State University, 2020
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