Home Events RCA Technical Webinar #2 – How are colleges learning more about their applicants?

RCA Technical Webinar #2 – How are colleges learning more about their applicants?

Great Schools Partnership, in collaboration with the Learning Policy Institute, is facilitating the New England Reimagining College Access Collaborative Community of Practice. This exciting regional initiative is designed to explore how the use of K-12 performance assessments can provide better information about students’ preparedness for higher education. Through this initiative, we seek to engage with professionals from college admissions and secondary schools across New England who are interested in employing strategies to attract, select, and support a more diverse student body.

Technical Webinar #2: How are colleges learning more about their applicants?
2:30-3:00 p.m. ET on February 11, 2021

During our meetings of the New England Reimagining College Access Collaborative, we have discovered that many colleges have implemented changes in their admissions practices, both big and small, that give students the ability to share more about their qualifications for admission. In this 1-hour webinar, we have invited several college admissions officers to briefly share their innovations and then answer questions about how it works. For example, some schools have added an optional video response or redesigned their essay to be a more open response prompt. Participants in the webinar will learn about a number of innovations that colleges are trying during this admissions year to learn more about their applicants.

Featured Presenters:
Meg Swift, Bowdoin College (ME)
Erin Gravelle and Lucy Bourgeault, Goddard College (VT)
Jason Laperriere, Wheaton College (MA)
Kylen Donovan, University of Maine

Register Now!

Community of Practice Meetings

Interested colleagues from college admissions, secondary schools, and other interested organizations will convene five times (October 20, November 17, January 12, March 9, and May 4) focused on developing a shared understanding of student acquisition and demonstration of transferable skills and related evidence that could be used to strengthen college access and success by convening.  The year long outcomes from this group are:

  1. Learn how performance assessments, especially those that demonstrate transferable skills, can reveal key information about student strengths that can better predict student success in college and inform college admissions practices
  2. Create guidelines that define qualities of performance assessments that demonstrate collegiate readiness
  3. Build a collaborative community of college admissions staff and secondary educators, including administrators and school counselors, through reimagining college access.
  4. Recommend changes in the use of performance assessments both in K-12 education as well in admissions criteria in order to address the current inequities.

Community of Practice Meetings take place on Zoom on the following dates:

Tuesday, October 20, 2020 from 1:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Tuesday, November 17, 2020 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Tuesday, January 12, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Tuesday, March 9, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Tuesday May 4, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET

Investigation Teams Meetings

Drawing from the Community of Practice group, those interested in digging deeper into a specific problem or dilemma will meet four times (November 18, January 13, March 10, and May 5) throughout the year. Each investigation team will work on one topic with a GSP facilitator using a design-thinking process. The goal of each Investigation Team will be to develop a process, protocol, set of guidelines, or examples aligned to their topic that could help facilitate the use of performance assessment in the K-12 and college admissions process that will be shared with the Community of Practice group in June 2020. Some potential topics investigation teams may explore include: 

  • Including performance assessments in the college admissions process efficiently
  • Key features of high school transcripts and school profiles 
  • Processes for using performance assessments in admissions that promote equity
  • Promoting the use of high quality performance assessments in high schools

Investigation Teams Meetings take place on Zoom on the following dates:

Wednesday, November 18, 2020 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Wednesday, January 13, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Wednesday, March 10, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET
Wednesday, May 5, 2021 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. ET

Technical Webinars

Three times during the school year (December 3, February 11, and April 1), one-hour sessions will be made available to anyone interested in the New England RCA Collaborative. The topics for these webinars will be generated through the investigation teams as they identify areas of interest for a broader audience. The December 3 webinar will focus on how secondary schools can improve their school profile and transcripts to better highlight the deeper learning of their students.

Technical webinars will take place on Zoom on the following dates:

Thursday, December 3, 2020 from 2:30-3:30 p.m. ET
Thursday, February 11, 2021 from 2:30-3:30 p.m. ET
Thursday, April 1, 2021 from 2:30-3:30 p.m. ET


Duke Albanese, Senior Policy Advisor
Ted Hall, Senior Associate
Michelle Milstein, Co-director of Coaching
Katie Thompson, Co-director of Coaching
David Ruff, Executive Director


Have Questions?

Contact Sarah Burkhardt at sburkhardt@greatschoolspartnership.org or 207-773-0505.


Feb 11 2021


2:00 pm - 3:00 pm


Online Zoom Meeting