High Impact Practices (HIPs)

Student giving a presentation to staff with a poster and fish tank

What are they?

According to the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), High Impact Practices, also referred to as HIPs, are “teaching and learning practices [that] have been widely tested and have been shown to be beneficial for college students from many backgrounds, especially historically underserved students, who often do not have equitable access to high-impact learning.”

High Impact Practices

HIPs range in forms and types. Broadly, the following are considered HIPs:

UW-Madison affords students many opportunities to engage in HIPs. Some examples of HIPs that CAE offers include the CAE Career Ready Internship Program, the Summer Collegiate Experience, and Alternative Break.

Why are they important?

According to George Kuh of AAC&U, participation in HIPs is effective for the following reasons:

  1. Students devote considerable time and effort in these activities
  2. Students are afforded opportunities to interact and collaborate with faculty, staff, and peers
  3. Students experience diversity through a variety of contexts and situations, develop cross-cultural experiences
  4. Students receive frequent, meaningful feedback about their performance in the HIP
  5. Students learn and work in different settings to integrate, synthesize, and apply knowledge to those contexts

AAC&U recommends participating in one HIP every year; however, research strongly suggests that participation in three or more HIPs significantly boosts deep-learning experiences.
Assessing  Underdeserved Students' Engagement in High Impact Practices

More information on HIPs can be found here.