Engaging families in college preparation: An actionable research case study

Document Type

Conference Presentation

Conference Title

American Educational Research Association Annual Conference


Philadelphia, PA

Conference Dates

April 3-7, 2014

Date of Presentation



Involving families in the college access process is essential. This qualitative case study explores how to design activities that strategically empower and engage parents. Data were gathered from the 113 students and their families who participated in a summer college access program over a three year period. Using the Action Inquiry Model, the researchers collaborated with practitioners to study how the program functioned and developed a family action plan pilot program. Themes emerging from the study suggest that parents want access to specific information, desire a deeper connection with other parents going through the process and feel empowered when given the opportunity to lead discusses with their children.

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