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Equity & Student Experience

In many college courses, students of color and financially stressed students are far less likely to experience identity safety, belonging, or instructors who effectively communicate confidence in their potential. This experience gap contributes to the broader opportunity gap because—as research shows—these affirming experiences are crucial for students to fully engage and successfully persist in college.

What is Copilot-Ascend?

Copilot-Ascend is a free, data-driven professional learning program that enables college instructors and administrators to learn how their students are experiencing courses and what they can do to make those experiences more equitable, more engaging, and more supportive of student success. Copilot-Ascend is currently being developed through the Student Experience Project. We welcome your feedback on how to improve this beta product.

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How does it work?

Educators use a brief, research-based survey to learn how students experience course(s). Once educators can recognize the experience gaps in their own courses, they are better equipped to take action to address them. Educators repeat the process through multiple cycles of inquiry and action in order to systematically create better learning experiences for all of their students.

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1. Elevate Student Experience

In a 5-10 minute, survey, students describe how they are experiencing a course.

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2. Review Feedback

A confidential report shows how students’ experiences are promoting or hindering equitable learning.

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3. Learn Relevant Practices

Get targeted recommendations for creating more engaging & equitable learning experiences.

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4. Track Improvement

Rerun the survey to see how students experience new practices. Repeat Steps 1-4 to keep improving.

Key Details

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Any U.S. 4-year or 2-year college or university. Copilot-Ascend is designed for use by instructors or those who supervise or coach instructors (e.g., department chairs or staff at teaching and learning centers). Contact us for implementation support.

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It takes less than 30 minutes from registration to get through your personalized setup and start surveying students. Your confidential, disaggregated survey results are available a few days later—allowing you to take action quickly.

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Free or Affordable

The Copilot-Ascend software is free thanks to the Raikes Foundation. Large scale implementations can benefit from additional services, like customized implementation planning and reporting, live demos, and enterprise tech support. Contact us to learn more.

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Learn with Us

Copilot-Ascend is still in beta. We’re actively working with our college partners and R&D partners to fine-tune it by learning what approaches work best for whom and in what contexts. We hope you’ll join us in this distributed continuous improvement initiative.

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Secure & FERPA Compliant

We keep your information secure, and we have a strict, legally binding privacy policy that is FERPA compliant. Hundreds of schools and colleges around the U.S. have used PERTS services under these legal and technological guarantees.

Questions & Support

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For support, email or schedule an office hours chat.

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Find answers to common questions in our FAQ.

Sign up for Copilot-Ascend for 2020-21

Enter your email to receive an invitation to Copilot, our online platform where you can explore the process in detail and, if you decide, start to participate. If you have more questions, please visit our FAQ.

Thank you for signing up! We look forward to working with you. If you would like planning support, please don’t hesitate to email or schedule an office hours chat.
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The Project for Education Research That Scales (PERTS) is a nonprofit research and development institute that translates insights from psychological science into cutting-edge tools, measures, and recommendations that educators anywhere can use to foster healthy and equitable academic engagement and success.

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