The Well-Balanced Nudge: How to Impact Behavior without Limiting Choice
From slicing apples to sending texts, education professionals have drawn from a growing suite of behavioral insights to design interventions that positively influence student behavior. Nudging can take on a variety of forms that range in strength and scale, but with such an adaptable concept comes the need to prevent confusion or unintentional misuse in practice. While behavioral interventions are rightfully discussed for their potential to achieve large-scale change at low costs, it’s also worth underscoring the importance of implementing nudges with fidelity. Ethical nudges should be designed with the intention of benefitting those being nudged, and they should never be misleading, coercive, or restrictive. As illustrated in a satirical cartoon from the Behavioral Scientist magazine, a “gentle tap of good sense” falls neatly in the center of the nudge continuum, whereas “feather of statistical insignificance” and “bat of paternalistic overreach” lie on opposite ends. In this post, NASPA's Research and Policy Associate Alexa Wesley offers a few suggestions for ways student affairs professionals can strike the right balance on the nudging scale.
Institution Spotlight: Buena Vista University’s Education for Service
Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, IA took a bold step forward this winter by introducing a scholarship program designed to allow several Buena Vista County high school students to study at their local hometown college campus. The “Education For Service” (EFS) scholarship was established for 10 local first-generation, Pell Grant and Iowa Tuition Grant Eligible students, to receive a scholarship package equal to full tuition.
When Hashtags Follow Gun Violence
The NASPA Enough is Enough Campaign Against Gun Violence was created 10 years ago after the late Dr. Zenobia Lawrence Hikes, then Vice President of Student Affairs at Virginia Tech, gave the closing address to the NASPA Annual Conference in Boston in 2008. Her speech called on student affairs practitioners to heed this warning and, with a fierce urgency, stem the tide of this growing societal violence. Once again, we must renew our commitment and support to our future students whom are acting with a fierce urgency and demanding changes in our laws. As students around the country prepare to join with the peers for March For Our Lives events, Dr. Scott Peska, reflects on the last 10 years and offers suggestions for moving beyond hashtags to support our current and future students.
3 Things SA Pros Should Know About “Smart” Nudging
How can student affairs professionals leverage their resources and knowledge of human behavior to advance student success at scale while maintaining personalized connections with students? With access to more data and technology than ever before, campuses are implementing digital nudging interventions that are designed to fit intuitively with a student’s lifestyle. Through the combination of behavioral science and data analytics, these “smart” nudges go beyond reminders about assignments and deadlines. Similar to how companies like Netflix predict TV shows or movies that “you might also like” based on consumer data and algorithms, institutions can improve the quality of the student experience through personalized nudges delivered electronically and informed by student data or real-time responses. In this post RPI Research and Policy Associate Alexa Wesley discusses how smart nudges can provide students with guidance and messages of encouragement relevant to their specific concerns and circumstances.
Which #NASPA18 Sessions Will You Be Attending? Here Are a Few to Consider!
It is almost time for the 2018 NASPA Annual Conference and, if you are attending, you may be wondering what sessions to attend. Chris Lewis, Dean of Student Affairs at Lansing Community College shares some of his choices as a person that has now been in a Senior Student Officer position for the last seven months, with new responsibilities to keep a keen eye on public policy. For someone that has not spent a lot of time incorporating public policy into day-to-day practices, this has been an adjustment, however, he knows that it impacts what he does and the educational experiences of the students that attend Lansing Community College.
Adult Learners and Students with Children KC Guide to NASPA 2018
The new majority is so diverse that we forget to consider them as a group. Join our KC at NASPA for sponsored and other relevant programs to get in tune with the best practices for serving students with an identity factor of nontraditional student.