Curricular Analytics Project

The Curricular Analytics Project (CAP)

In its feature on Curricular Analytics, The Chronicle of Higher Education asked, “Is Your Degree Program Too Complicated? (” Answers are facilitated by Curricular Analytics, which informs faculty oversight and supports essential apples-to-apples comparative analysis.

The Chronicle might have also asked: Is the structure of a degree program sufficiently scaffolded to support the integration of high-impact practices and robust learning outcomes? The Curricular Analytics Toolkit is a useful set of data visualization and analytics tools for all degree programs.

Supported by a grant from the Ascendium Education Group ($2M over three years), UERU has worked with 30 members to further refine and validate early evidence of the causal impact of curricular structure (e.g., pre- and co-requisites, blocking courses, chains of required courses, etc.).

UERU is also collecting 10 years of student progress and performance data from 30 CAP University Partners to analyze the role that curricular structure may play in inequitable outcomes for racially minoritized students, Pell recipients, and first-generation students.

CAP universities interact via the MyUERU online community and have gathered at the University of Notre Dame (2022), Temple University (2023), and the University of Arizona (2023). The presentation of CAP results will occur at our hybrid meeting at Emory University (June 7, 2024).

While many universities, including non-UERU members, use Curricular Analytics, CAP University Partners are committed to a rigorous approach to student success and count 30 percent or more of their undergraduates as Pell Grant recipients (an equity/excellence proxy measure):

  • Clark Atlanta University
  • Colorado State University
  • Florida International University
  • Florida State University
  • Georgia Mason University
  • Georgia State University
  • Kent State University
  • Montclair State University
  • Morgan State University
  • New Mexico State University
  • Rutgers University-Newark
  • Temple University
  • University of Arizona
  • University of California, Davis
  • University of California, Irvine
  • University of California, Riverside
  • University of California, San Diego
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Illinois, Chicago
  • University of Memphis
  • University of New Mexico
  • University of North Carolina, Charlotte
  • University of South Florida
  • University of Texas, Arlington
  • University of Texas, Dallas
  • University of Texas, El Paso
  • University of Texas, San Antonio
  • University of Texas, Tyler
  • University of Toledo
  • Utah State University
  • Washington State University

Curricular Analytics

Curricular Analytics is an open-source tool for the study of curricular complexity pioneered by Greg Heileman (University of Arizona), Chaouki Abdallah (Georgia Institute of Technology), and other then-University of New Mexico researchers and academic leaders. 

Access the Tool

Heileman and Abdallah have presented findings at Association for Undergraduate Education at Research Universities-sponsored meetings. To help spread the word about the value of using the tool as a means to promote student success, UERU sponsored the production of a 5-minute video introduction. Please feel free to share this video with colleagues.

UERU is participating in ongoing research. Findings to date suggest that unnecessary curricular complexity extends time-to-degree and adversely affects graduation rates. On-going study aims to assess the impact on achievement gaps. Use of the tool has the manifest benefit of engaging faculty, advisors, and others in student-centered review of required curricula, while latent benefits include encouraging unit-level student-centered discussion as such.

A screenshot of a Curricular Analytics degree map

Sample Curricular Analytics degree program map