This research brief compares the postsecondary outcomes of students in certified Linked Learning pathways with those of peers with similar demographic characteristics and prior achievement in traditional high school programs. Certified pathways are those deemed to have met established quality standards through an external review. We found that Linked Learning students enrolled in college, remained through the first year, and persisted into a second year at similar rates as their traditional high school peers, both overall and for most of the subgroups examined. Further, Linked Learning had a positive effect on college enrollment for students who entered high school with low academic achievement and a positive effect on 4-year college enrollment for African American students. We found no negative effects of Linked Learning on postsecondary enrollment or persistence for any subgroup. Together, these findings suggest that Linked Learning pathways are just as successful in preparing students for college as traditional high school programs and may be more effective for African American students and students with low prior achievement.
Project: Evaluation of the California Linked Learning District Initiative
- 2017 Technical Report (PDF)
- 2018 Technical Report (PDF) – Revised August 2018 to reflect updated high school graduation data and analysis
Caspary, K., & Warner, M. (2017). Linked Learning and Postsecondary Transitions: A Report on the Early Postsecondary Education Outcomes of Linked Learning Students. Menlo Park, CA: SRI International.