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Calling all faculty

This summer, get hip to High Impact Practices.

By Elizabeth Parmelee

April 22, 2019

Three students sitting in desks in classroom listening to instructorOver the past several years, faculty and staff in a variety of University departments have been exploring the concept of High Impact Practices and how they can influence the success of Metropolitan State University of Denver students. Building on these efforts, the Center for Teaching, Learning and Design, in collaboration with Undergraduate Studies, will host the first-ever High Impact Practices Summer Institute this summer.

What does it take to be HIP?

The concept of High Impact Practices was developed by George Kuh (2008) based on research indicating that student participation in key types of pedagogy or programs had a significant impact on student retention and success, particularly for underserved students and particularly when students encountered multiple practices throughout their academic careers. While there has been subsequent questioning of what, precisely, is high-impact about HIPs and whether (or how) students have equitable access to these practices, there is little doubt that the practices highlighted in Kuh’s work have a positive impact on student success when implemented appropriately.

What does this look like at MSU Denver, and how can we use the concept of HIPs to move all of our students toward success, retention and graduation? Do we even want to use the phrase “High Impact Practices” for this work – or is HIP out of sync with Roadrunner style?

These are the questions we will wrestle with during the two-day HIP Summer Institute. Modeled on the Association of American Colleges and Universities Summer Institutes, we will create a team of faculty interested in identifying relevant HIPs and developing a plan to implement them individually and collectively throughout the year. While we will seek the advice and expertise of national leaders, we will rely primarily on the creativity and energy of our own team to move HIPs forward in the coming year.


We are assembling a team of faculty from across all colleges/schools interested in engaging in this work together. Participants will join us for two full days this summer (dates will be scheduled after participants are identified) and then implement their individual plans during the fall and spring semesters. Each department may nominate one or two faculty members for participation. Please contact Elizabeth Parmelee for further details and let your department chair know that you are interested.

High Impact Practices Identified by AAC&U:

  • First-year experiences
  • Common intellectual experiences
  • Learning communities
  • Writing-intensive courses
  • Collaborative assignments and projects
  • Undergraduate research
  • Diversity/global learning
  • ePortfolios
  • Service learning, community-based learning
  • Internships
  • Capstone courses and projects

Topics: Academics, Events

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