Eye on Research


Join me once a month as I provide commentary, updates on AACRAO Research, and relevant topics in Higher Education research. Want to receive updates on the blog directly? Join the email list below.

- Dr. Wendy Kilgore
Director of Research, AACRAO

February 2024 - Report From AdAstra Benchmarks the Effectiveness of Course Scheduling, Undergraduate Enrollment Shows Increases, and a New Research Shows Concerning Data About Student Debt | 02/27/2024

This month's eye on research blog announces the Undergraduate Credit for Prior Learning AACRAO Survey, the 2024 AACRAO Research Calendar, and a call to participate in redefining the AACRAO Glossary. February research highlights include a report from AdAstra benchmarking the effectiveness of course scheduling, new data shows increase in undergraduate enrollment, new research shows concerning data about student debt, and more.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • January 2024 - AACRAO 2023 Chief Enrollment Management Officer Career Profile Report, Credential Confusion–A New AACRAO Report, and a New Report Identifies Common Post-Graduation Barriers to Career Success | 01/29/2024

    This month's eye on research blog addresses progress on new terminology used in higher education, welcomes new research advisory board members, highlights research opportunities, and discusses a new report identifying post-graduation barriers to career success, a case study using predictive analytics and care management to promote learner success, and a survey of Gen-Z learners examine their priorities for work and education.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • November 2023 - Operational Efficiency of Academic Operations, 2023 U.S. Chief Enrollment Management Officer Career Profile, and A New Survey Indicates Many Employers are Eliminating the Need for a Bachelor's Degree | 12/04/2023

    This month's eye on research blog discusses a new study that offers insight into how 800 employers will tackle higher education requirements as the cost of education continues to rise, a recently released 60-Second survey on operational efficiency, the 2023 U.S. CEMO Career Profile, a new survey indicates many employers are eliminating the need for a bachelor's degree, a multiple-measures assessment showing proved student success, insights into a new survey looking into how colleges are perceived to be serving students, and new data from the U.S. Department of Education examining transfer rates and success.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • October 2023 - Operational Efficiency of Academic Operations, Study Shows Impact of Faculty and Teaching Methods on Gateway Math Success, and an Examination the Challenges and Opportunities of Gen-Z | 10/27/2023

    This month's eye on research blog recognizes the AACRAO Research Grant Winners and discusses a study showing the impact of faculty and teaching methods on gateway math success, the challenges and opportunities of Gen-Z, a comparison of secondary-career and technical-education policies across states, a report on high-school graduates who opt out of attending 4-year institutions, an examination of the persistent struggles of hispanic students, an examination of the motivations and outcomes of community college students, and a study of how role models affect future success.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • September 2023 - College Applications and Process, Student Orientation Practices, Trends in Student Success Services, and Digital Learning and Student Belonging | 09/28/2023

    This month's blog examines a new working paper, student orientation practices, key trends in student success services, two reports on digital learning and student belonging, how prospective students use college rankings, and reactions to the affirmative action ban from the Annual Survey of Admissions Officers.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • August 2023 - Persistence Rates, Student Stress, and Disparities in Asian-American-Student Admissions | 08/23/2023

    This month's blog examines persistence rates among students, student views on the college experience, a variety of admissions and enrollment perspectives, and the value of a degree.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • July 2023 - Digital Credentials, the Value of Higher Education, and Managing AI Use | 07/28/2023

    This month's blog examines advancements in digital credentials, confidence in higher education, and the impact of AI.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • June 2023 - Learning Mobility, Microcredential Management, and Students' Mental Health | 06/28/2023

    This month's blog examines advancements in adult learning mobility, the progress of microcredentials, studies on student stress and mental health, and more.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • May 2023 - Admissions Offices, Assisting College Town Economies, and Addressing the Student Experience | 05/26/2023

    This month's blog examines the state of the admissions workforce, how college towns are affected by enrollment trends, addressing pathways to improve the student experience, and more.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Apr. 2023 - Detecting AI, Declining Enrollment Trends, and Demand for Systemic Change | 04/27/2023

    This month's blog discusses the use of AI among college students, trends showing a continuous decline in transfer enrollments, calls for system change to address racism, and more.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Feb. 2023 - Preferred Course Modality, Community College Trends, and FAFSA Completion Rates | 02/24/2023

    This month's blog discusses perspectives on preferred class delivery modality, recent data regarding community colleges, and high school counselors' impact on FAFSA completion.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Jan. 2023 - Managing Institutional Software, Measuring Employee Retention, and Mapping Enrollment Trends | 01/26/2023

    This month's blog discusses increasing employee turnover rate trends for 2023, varying enrollment patterns at U.S. baccalaureate colleges, and how institutions manage software.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Nov. & Dec. 2022 - Student Loans, Stranded Credits, and the Use of Degree-Audit and Education-Planning Solutions | 12/13/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on new solutions to student loan policies, the impact of debt-based stranded credits, and degree-audit and education-planning practices to support students.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Oct. 2022 - Affirmative Action in Admissions, Meeting Student Needs, and the Modern Registrar | 10/28/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on trends in student opinions on the legality of race-conscious college admissions, meeting student needs amidst tuition increases and resource shortages, and the white paper release of the Role of the Modern Registrar.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Sept. 2022 - Reduced Retirement Confidence, Remote Learning Rates, and Student Sentiments Towards Staff Support | 09/30/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on trends in reduced confidence in retirement planning, opinions on remote learning, and student sentiments towards in-person staff support.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Aug. 2022 - Collegiate Consolidation, Registrar Roles, and the Great Resignation | 08/25/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on trends in higher education closings, mergers, and acquisitions, the role of the modern registrar, and insights on how to retain and recruit employees.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Jul. 2022 -  Faculty Salaries, Class Scheduling, and Student Persistence | 07/29/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on factors affecting decreasing faculty salaries, analyses of academic demand trends, and student persistence and retention rates.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Jun. 2022 - Student Debt, Staffing Challenges, and Studies in Enrollment Behavior | 06/24/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on the correlation between financial costs and degree completion, administrative capability concerns, and where students are going to college.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • May 2022 - Transfer Patterns, Student Success, and Innovative Technology Responses | 05/24/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on trends in transfer patterns, factors affecting student success, and responses to innovative technologies.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
  • Apr. 2022 - Academic Operations, Students' Mental Health, and the State of Higher Education | 04/29/2022

    This month's blog provides updates on academic operations functions and structure, students' mental health outcomes amidst the pandemic, and a summation of the current state of higher education.

  • Dr. Wendy Kilgore
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    About the Author

    • Dr. Wendy Kilgore

      Wendy Kilgore serves as the Director of Research and Senior Consultant for AACRAO with more than 20  years of experience as a higher education administrator, researcher, and consultant in the US and Canada. She brings expertise in recruitment, admissions, financial aid, academic advisement, curriculum support, registration, records management, veterans’ education services, technology, organizational restructuring, student-centric business practice development, policy development, and managing comprehensive collaboration to support enrolment efforts.

      Prior to her full-time work with AACRAO, Dr. Kilgore served as state dean of enrollment services for the Colorado Community College system and the director of admissions and registrar for the Pima County Community College District. Her professional and consulting experience spans a wide array of institutions, including large public universities, small private colleges, small private, faith-based colleges, private for-profit institutions, technical colleges, a large two-year multi-campus community college district, and a state community college system consisting of 13 colleges. 

      Dr. Kilgore’s strategic consulting experience has included: records retention and disposition reviews, comprehensive student service evaluations; registrar and admission office reviews; business process analysis, mapping, and re-engineering; policy reviews; student service division mission; values and goals development; recommendations for organizational restructuring; technology requirements assessment and documentation, project charter and project plan development and SEM plan development.