ACE Affective Non-Cognitive Evidence
The ACE program addresses non-cognitive skills that have typically not been developed by students most likely to enroll in the ACE program, due to the negative circumstances of their lives and their prior negative experiences as students. ACE, MPR Associates and Professor Martin Chemers—professor emeritus of psychology from the University of California Santa Cruz–developed an instrument that combines eight mediating factors from standardized instruments including academic self-efficacy, personal responsibility, college identity, four factors of mindfulness, and leadership and teamwork efficacy. ACE named this instrument the College Student Self Assessment Survey (CSSAS).
MPR Associates is currently conducting a longitudinal study that shows that ACE students experience shifts in affective factors that are important for academic success. The MPR study will generate a series of 4 reports—of which three have been released thus far—looking at ACE cohorts at multiple colleges between spring 2010 to spring 2013.
The latest interim report from the MPR study reports measured psychological constructs associated with the affective dimension, which are instrumental to student success. ACE students exhibited significant gains in the 8 factors measured: academic self-efficacy, personal responsibility, college identity, four factors of mindfulness, and leadership and teamwork efficacy. An additional report that will combine qualitative and quantitative outcomes from 7 colleges in three states will be produced by MPR by December 2013.
The total n for this analysis is 535 students from 7 colleges participating in the ACE program measured at three different times:
- Gold = Before Foundation Course
- Brown = End of Foundation Course
- Tan = End of Semester
Results have shown that students who complete the ACE Foundation Course report a statistically significant improvement at a p<.001 or p<.01 level in six of the eight affective dimensions measured, and at a p<.05 in an additional dimension.
ACE's Non-Cognitive Effect on Students - 7 College Study of 535 Students
ACE Participants' Mean Scale Scores for CSSAS Factors
- Notes: ***p < .001; **p < .01; *p < .05; statistical significance is based on comparison with Time 1 scores.
- The Y-axis represents the mean (average) score for each factor.
- Survey responses were based on a five-point scale, from “strongly disagree to strongly agree” for the non-mindfulness items and from “never or very rarely true” to “always or almost always” true for the mindfulness items.