Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Hope Survey

After some strategic planning a few weeks back, my new position has me selling/doing outreach on The Hope Survey 75% of my time. This is work that I am really excited about, since it brings relevance and data driven decision practices to the school environment on more than just "how to get students to do better on tests."

My organization, Edvisions Schools, is submitting our second I3 grant on this work. The Hope Survey began more than five years ago when we were approached by Mark Van Ryzin, who was working on his PhD at the University of Minnesota in Education Psychology. Mark Van Ryzin is someone I have immense respect for, since I feel like he is actually working on things that matter to kids: motivation, relevance, mentor figures and so on. After five years of data, we are now able to definitively say that raising student hope correlates to raising student achievement.

The following is from a recent write up by Mark Van Ryzin: "The Hope Surveys measure autonomy, belongingness and competence, along with their resulting engagement in learning and their dispositional orientations towards achievement (i.e. their "hope"). Matched with student achievement scores, the resulting data can provide a detailed picture of the school climate and its effects on student performance. The Hope Surveys do this in a manner that protects student confidentiality yet still can measure student performance over time. The surveys require very little time, which means that they will not significantly impact instruction."

The Hope Surveys have been proven to help schools:
  • Understand the school culture and how it supports adolescent needs
  • Link school culture to dispositional hope, which is correlated to post high school success
  • Discover ways to engage students to raise achievement
  • Improve teacher effectiveness by providing appropriate interventions that raise engagement and hope
Here are some recent documents for your viewing pleasure (pdf's):
So the variables work like this:
  1. Autonomy, Belonginess, Goal Orientation & Academic Press (student perceptions of these) lead to --->
  2. Engagement - which refers to the student's behavior and attitudes in school (means students are both "behaviorally engaged" and "emotionally engaged" in school)... leads to --->
  3. Hope - (psychological health) which reflects individual's perception regarding their ability to clearly conceptualize their goals & to develop the specific strategies to reach theses goals (i.e., pathway thinking), and initiate and sustain the activities in support of those strategies(i.e., agency thinking)... which leads to --->
  4. Academic Achievement - I argue that schools should be held "accountable" for raising student hope ;-)
I invite any feedback on this information. I am looking for schools, networks of schools and states who would like use our survey. Does your school have have hope?

507 248-3738 ext. 7

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