C-REAL Projects

Current Projects

Past Projects

Current Projects


The (AHEAD) program is reaching out to students from La Habra High School and the California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) who are interested in nursing careers.  This program includes collaboration activities with the CSUF Baccalaureate nursing program, the La Habra Community Collaborative, and La Habra High School to provide support for students and their parents. The program validates the importance of cultural knowledge and family support as well as sharing family support methods to improve student development.  AHEAD reinforces students’ self-esteem, social skills, and leadership potential.  Additionally, this program proposes to inform students of the obstacles associated with success in college.  C-REAL monitors the program’s progress, provides feedback for program improvement, and tracks students’ academic progress and participation. This assessment will inform program impact and progress related to obstacles in health and career opportunities.

CIRM Stem Cell Training

The purpose of the CIRM Bridges to Stem Cell Research evaluation is to provide a formative and summative evaluation of the effectiveness of the Stem Cell Research program and help the leadership team to increase student success at California State University, Fullerton. C-REAL will collect quantitative and qualitative data to gauge the program’s success according objectives set by the program’s leadership. Feedback will also be constructed for program improvement. The Stem Cell Training Program provides an excellent opportunity for student participants to gain advanced skills at the baccalaureate level and interact with stem cell researchers.


The purpose of this project is to provide an overview of the quality and effectiveness of the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) departments at Santa Ana College, Fullerton College, and California State University, Fullerton (CSUF). The Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership (C-REAL) at CSUF in collaboration with ENGAGE in STEM programs at each institution, will assess the institutional capacities and practices that lead to the support and success of STEMdisciplines for students taking STEM courses at each respective campus. Quantitative and qualitative data will be collected and analyzed to assess program effectiveness specific to ENGAGE in STEM.

Future Scholars Evaluation

The Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership (C-REAL) will measure the Future Scholar program’s effectiveness.  The CSU Scholarship Program for Future Scholars at California State University, Fullerton, is designed to help finance the first year of studies at CSUF. The Program awards up to fifty $1000 scholarships to first-time freshman/first-time transfer students and is designed to facilitate the transition to college for meritorious students who are disadvantaged due to their economic, environmental, or educational background. The CSU Scholarship Program for Future Scholars honors students who demonstrate strong academic skills and achievements, service to school and home communities, and strength of character.


GEAR-UP (Gaining Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) is an educational development program that prepares low-income students for postsecondary education and supports the building of a college going culture in middle and high schools. The program is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, and is housed in the Educational Partnerships Office and the Anaheim Unified School District. C-REAL provides a holistic  evaluation of this program using multiple methods of data collection that engage students, parents, teachers, and community partners in measuring program effectiveness and identifying best practices in partnerships, leadership, and student response to instruction. In addition, C-REAL is building a longitudinal database to track students from middle school through college.

Maywood Project

The City of Maywood College Fair is designed to promote higher education awareness, knowledge, and resources to the residence of Maywood and the surrounding community in order to encourage a college going culture among students and their families. As part of the annual City of Maywood College Fair, C-REAL will conduct research to examine the perceptions of community leaders in the city of Maywood and study their perceptions of their role and responsibility in addressing the low levels of educational attainment and aspiration in an underserved low income area.

Maywood Educational Fair

The graduate students of the Masters of Science in Higher Education program in coordination with C-REAL will hold the 6th Annual Maywood Educational Fair on October 18, 2014.

The Educational Fair is our opportunity to demonstrate to students and their families how obtaining a college degree is possible.  Workshops will be held for K-12 students, adult learners, and parents focusing on interventions ranging from financial aid, requirements for college, and issues facing undocumented students.

Minority Male Initiative Database

The strategy C-REAL proposes to devise will assist community colleges in more effectively serving minority males students by defining best practices and developing a national database for the Minority Male Initiative.  By defining best practices, scholars, practioners, and other academic professionals can determine various elements to implement on their respective campuses to work toward serving their minority male students.  In addition, it is vital to consider outcomes for the determined best practices as well as think critically about the institutional responses to such practices.

With regard to the Minority Male Initiative database, there are three phases to this project: 1) develop a data repository for minority males at community colleges, 2) develop a high school repository, and 3) develop a middle school tracking system.  These robust datasets will serve as the basis for informing the Presidents’ Round Table and other interested parties about the academic challenges of minority males at community colleges.

Next Step EDU

On April 27, 2015, 30 Corinthian College locations closed displacing approximately 16,000 students following a $30 million dollar fine from the U.S. Department of Education. NextStepsEDU is a web-based service created through a national coalition of professional volunteers to assist displaced students in developing next steps toward continuing their educational journey by connecting students with the appropriate volunteer advisors (academic, financial-aid, and legal counsel). The Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership (C-REAL), the Department of Educational Leadership at Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Long Beach have teamed up with the U.S. Department of Education, Beyond 12 (a national nonprofit organization), and various financial aid professional associations to form NextStepsEDU. NextStepsEDU is a service created for displaced students from the Corinthian Colleges and aims to assist them in developing the next step toward continuing their educational journey.

On June 8, 2015, the launch of NextStepsEDU was followed by a press release made by the U.S. Department of Education. As of August 27, 2015 there have been 1,089 students affected by the Corinthian College closure that have requested for advisement through the NextStepsEDU website. Of the 1,089 students, 121 have specifically requested college advisement. Students seeking college advisement were helped by 23 volunteers from Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Long Beach. The volunteers are current graduate students, doctoral students, or alumni from the Educational Leadership programs. C-REAL trained 18 volunteers from Cal State Fullerton to assist in the months of June and July, and 5 volunteers from Cal State Long Beach to assist in the month of August. Of the 121 students, 103 student cases have been resolved and 18 still remain open with assigned volunteer advisors.


Dual language immersion programs provide a rich environment for students to acquire a second language and for heritage learners it is provides an opportunity for them to master the academic language of their mother tongue while preserving their heritage. Instruction in dual immersion programs is typically divided between two languages --English and a second language. There is a growing demand for dual language immersion programs, especially from communities with a large concentration of heritage learners, and the Vietnamese communities are no exception. The purpose of the evaluation plan is to improve the teaching and learning of Vietnamese Dual Language Immersion (DLI) program supported by the National Resource Center for Asian Languages (NRCAL). Specifically, the research seeks to increase understanding about students', teachers', community members', staff members' and parents' perceptions of dual-language immersion.

President’s Roundtable Data base

At the request of the Presidents’ Roundtable, the Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership at California State University, Fullerton proposes the following plan to assist in the creation of a national database for the Minority Male Initiative (MMI) in partnership with the Coastline Community College District.

There are three phases to this project:

1) develop a data repository for minority males at community colleges, 2) develop a high school repository, and 3) develop a middle school tracking system.

These robust datasets will serve as the basis for informing the Presidents Roundtable and other interested parties about the academic challenges of minority males at community colleges.


In an effort to promote data driven decisions for programs that were created to foster success among minority males, the Center for Research on Educational Access and Leadership (C-REAL) developed Project PERSIST (Promoting Evaluation Research Support and Institutional Staff Training). The goal of Project PERSIST is to build community college institutional capacity in the areas of minority male program assessment and evaluation among professionals in community colleges. Specifically, this pilot project aligns itself with the goals of establishing educational partnerships between different educational institutions to promote college-level readiness among community college students. By providing training in evaluation research, C-REAL aspires to identify the best practices among these minority male initiatives at community college.

The Leadership Project

The Leadership Project is an effort to build educational partnerships within Orange and Los Angeles Counties. Through C-REAL, CSUF faculty are meeting with educational leaders in the local universities, community colleges, and school districts to determine current issues and challenges in education. A main focus of C-REAL is to address local problems and conduct solution-focused research. The Leadership Project is currently in its first phase; findings from this project will help set our research agenda.

Undergraduate Research Oppurtunity Program (UROP)

The Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) is a one-year program that offers first and second-year undergraduates at California State University, Long Beach the opportunity to participate in a faculty sponsor’s research and creative process. Students must apply for the program, and once admitted to the program, they meet with a UROP advisor. After advisement, students search for a research project of interest from a list of UROP faculty sponsors. Undergraduate Research Assistants (URAs) interview with their faculty sponsor to be accepted into a research project. During the fall semester, students enroll in a one-unit research seminar that teaches URAs research methods, research ethics, and other essential research skills. URAs assist their faculty sponsor with the process of research in the laboratory setting. During the spring semester, URAs enroll in an advanced research seminar that focuses on supporting successful research placements, career exploration, major preparation and success. Faculty sponsors present their research with the assistance of their URAs at the CSULB Undergraduate Research Symposium. C-REAL monitors the development of URAs in areas of research skills and research ethics using a mixed-methods approach. By gathering qualitative and quantitative data from survey and focus group instruments, UROP is evaluated through the perceptions of stakeholders. Students, faculty, and staff of UROP participated in the evaluation. C-REAL reported recommendations for program improvement and efficiency in effort of strengthening the vital opportunity for undergraduates to conduct research.

Past Projects

Addressing the Achievement Gap

The College of Education is committed to exploring the achievement gap and implications for research, training, and practice.  C-REAL examines challenges in student achievement, such as teacher quality, school climate, educational leadership, and research on college student persistence. C-REAL will measure program effectiveness for Cerritos College as they challenge the achievement gap by instituting a comprehensive cultural shift at the college through a federally funded program known as iFALCON.

This faculty-driven intervention targets student achievement through the practice of the Habits of Mind and student engagement.  In addition, C-REAL served as the evaluator for the 2009 Achievement Gap Summit at CSUF and participates with the University Deliverology Committee focused on student persistence.

The C-REAL iFALCON evaluation plan provides a holistic assessment of how the implementation of Habits of Mind (HOM) concepts enables students to persist and succeed at the college level and beyond. The evaluation examines perspectives of students and faculty at Cerritos Community College in Los Angeles County, California, which is a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI). Based on the concept of HOM, a federally funded intervention program, iFALCON, uses survey instruments to measure participants’ academic perspectives, behaviors, and self-beliefs.  C-REAL collects quantitative and qualitative data to gauge the program’s success according to objectives set by the program’s leadership. Feedback will also be constructed for future program improvements and institutionalization of the iFALCON model. This model can be used as an example of institutional responsiveness to student engagement and academic support for underserved college student populations. Additionally, the iFALCON initiative provides an excellent opportunity for students to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to advance to further forms of education.

Children’s Center – CSUF

C-REAL offers the CSUF Children’s Center research-based resources to determine its effectiveness through the implementation of an evaluation to determine program usage and the extent to which children, family, and staff are learning and developing through the curriculum and programs offered. The Center is designed to provide quality subsidized child care and development primarily for students and limited spaces for faculty and staff children; it is directed by a team of trained child care professionals and teachers.

Chinese Scholars Program

During the fall 2014 semester, two groups of Chinese scholars from multiple universities will be visiting the College of Education.  The purpose of the visit is for Chinese scholars to learn the best practices in instruction, scholarly and creative activities, and services in the American higher education system.  Faculty and students will interact with the Chinese visiting scholars. During the visit, we will exchange practices and experiences in higher education between cultures in order to gain a global perspective on higher education. This academic partnership will be a fruitful experience for the visiting scholars and the College of Education.


Co-Teaching is a new student teaching model for elementary, middle, high school and P-12 districts.  The model emphasizes one on one instruction, small group instruction, parallel teaching, differentiated instructions, and alternative approaches.  Co-Teaching enhances learning opportunity for students due to having two teachers in the classroom.

C-REAL will provide evaluation services to examine the co-teaching model as an effective approach to preparing teacher candidates for the profession.

Evaluation Goals

  • To identify the benefits, if any, of implementing the co-teaching program for teacher candidates/cooperating teachers at CSUF for all immediate stakeholders.
  • To determine how teacher candidates/cooperating teachers describe their experiences with the co-teaching training model
  • To determine how the teacher candidates/cooperating teachers perceive the co-teaching model considering initial and ongoing expectations
  • To determine how teacher candidates/cooperating teachers describe their experiences with the implementation of the co-teaching model/program.
  • To determine if the co-teaching strategies were utilized by the teacher candidates/ cooperating teachers.

College Pathway Partnership

The purpose of this project is to increase educational opportunities to student who reside in underrepresented and low-income communities by establishing a college pathways training program. The certificate program will provide needed knowledge, skills, and awareness to administrators and educational leaders to understand the cultural capital of underrepresented communities as well as offer useful information to assists students with the process of applying to college.

CSUF AB 540 Students

Further research is needed to explore the needs and challenges of undocumented and AB540 students, understand the perplexities of immigrant students’ lives, and create a safe and welcoming campus environment. The data collected will contribute to the design and development of useful training materials for departments regarding AB540 students.  C-REAL will assess the student experiences of undocumented individuals from their perspective and viewpoint as well as how students develop their identity and sense of belonging at the CSUF campus.

El Viento

The El Viento College Success Coach Internship program is a program that will be designed to assist El Viento college students to achieve college success.  The College Success Coach program will be responsible for a variety of services related to student affairs including tracking students’ academic records, tracking if students are meeting the El Viento scholarship requirements, and linking students to various resource on campus that serve their needs.  The program will also consist of a career mentoring program, and provide assistant to students on issues of time management, achievement, and graduation or transfer to a four year university.  C-REAL will provide evaluation services for interventions offered through this program.


The Expanding Math Access for All (EMA2) project at California State University Fullerton focuses on supporting pre-service teachers in mathematics teaching by involving them in a hands-on after-school tutoring program for fifth and sixth graders.

The purpose of C-REAL’s evaluation of EMA2  is to measure the effectiveness of this pre-service teacher intervention program which aims to 1) increase the math abilities of underperforming elementary school children; and, 2) strengthen the education of pre-service math teachers to include their ability to assess students and reduce teacher stress and anxiety. This research is significant because it will allow for the collection of quantitative and qualitative data to determine the effectiveness of the program’s goals and objectives.  In addition, this project supports the continued effort to increase the abilities of low achieving math students in the elementary school setting. Furthermore, this project supports the education of future math teachers, as well as researching ways of reducing teacher anxiety and stress levels.

Environmental Biology Project – CSUF

The purpose of this research project is to examine the effectiveness of the UMEB – Environmental Biology Program at CSU-Fullerton. Both quantitative and qualitative data will be used to gauge the program’s success according to objectives set by the program’s leadership. Reports will also be constructed based on students’ responses. This will be utilized in order to improve the program’s effectiveness and overall student development in environmental biology.

Evaluation of the CTP Project

California State University (CSU) has a significant interest in strengthening K-12 education in California and has been the state’s leading entity preparing school administrators for many years.  One of these career pathways programs is the California Teacher Pathway (CTP) project.  There are currently nine CTP projects.  Each CTP project site has been formed as partnerships built among California State University (CSU) campuses, community colleges, afterschool programs, and community-based agencies. The program’s goal is to keep promising teachers and youth workers in their neighborhoods by creating a continuous career pathway leading from the community college, to a BA at their local CSU, to a Multiple Subject Credential, and then to teaching careers in K-8 settings.  The CTP evaluation and onsite Center has partnered with C-REAL at CSU Fullerton to create evaluation services at each site. C-REAL will serve as a housing base for all data collected and manage data in the system.

North Orange County Community College District

Professional Development workshop series for community college staff with the NOCCCD is designed to take ten to twenty district employees through a two-year professional development experience focused on the role, function, and evolution of the community college in California and how each division and community member contributes to the success of NOCCCD institutions and students. In line with the mission of the North Orange County Community College District, “to serve and enrich our communities and inspire life-long learning by providing education that is exemplary, relevant, and accessible,” this professional development program is proposed.

NSF Grant- Studying undergraduate experience in Computer Science and Engineering

In an effort to increase the number and diversity of student pursuing education and careers in computer science and engineering, university departments nationwide are looking for a way to revise their curricula to attract more students, particularly women, to computing fields. The central objective of the study is to investigate how undergraduate experiences in CSE departments shape undergraduate women’s educational and vocational trajectories.

Project ASPEN

Project ASPEN (After School Program Educational Network) is designed to create a well-defined career pathway for after school staff members to pursue their education at community college, the four year university, or through a credential program. The program will establish collaborative partnerships between community colleges, CSUF, and organizations that currently provide after school programs and workforce opportunities. C-REAL will provide evaluation services for interventions offered through this program.

Analyses of both quantitative and qualitative data will be used for project decision-making, dissemination and sustainability initiatives.  Findings will result in reports that capture the following types of information: participant survey results, student performance, and assessment of program impact, reports on participant attendance, and other custom analyses as requested. This method of ongoing, routine data collection and analysis will be used to present reports not only to the US Department of Education, but to community stakeholders to systematically identify outcomes and  utilize these findings encourage additional funding for the following program year.

Project C.R.E.A.T.E.

Project C.R.E.A.T.E. (Children Reaching Excellence in the Arts and Academics Through Engagement) is a collaborative effort between the Schools First Center for Creativity and Critical Thinking in partnership with the Fullerton School District and C-REAL. The purpose of this federally funded project is to infuse elementary school curricula with the arts and measure the impact on student achievement in other school subjects such as math and reading. Through an experimental design and program evaluation, C-REAL will assess the project outcomes to determine the influence of art programs on student achievement, motivation, and self-perception as learners over a four year period. Additionally, a Think Tank of experts will be assembled to assist in the development of an assessment to measure the national arts standards.  Outcomes will be disseminated through an arts symposium, professional development institutes, and publications. For more information regarding project C.R.E.A.T.E click the following link www.project-create.org


Southern California Ecosystem Research Program (SCERP) Evaluation CSUF

The purpose of this research project is to examine the effectiveness of the Southern California Ecosystems Research Program (SCERP) at CSU-Fullerton. Both quantitative and qualitative data will be used to gauge the program’s success according to objectives set by the program’s leadership. Reports will also be constructed based on students’ responses. This will be utilized in order to improve the program’s effectiveness and overall student development in environmental biology.

Southwest Community College Project

The Successful African American Male Project addresses the lack of engagement civically and academically among the African American male community at Los Angles Southwest Community College. The program addresses the needs of African American males in a community college setting. Providing students that participate in the program with mentoring, counseling, tutoring, and civic engagement opportunities that will help them get acclimated to the collegiate setting. This project will expand to include an assessment of student athletes at Southwest as well as a focus on mentoring with the African American Mentoring Project.


TEST-UP (Talent Expansion in Science and Technology: An Urban Partnership) is a National Science Foundation (NSF) funded project that includes California State University Fullerton (CSUF), Mt. San Antonio College (Mt. SAC) and Santa Ana College (SAC). Initiated in 2008, TEST-UP focuses on increasing the number of STEM transfer students to four-year institutions and to increasing the numbers of students obtaining Associate and Bachelor’s degrees in STEM fields.  C-REAL will be involved with data analysis of TEST-UP as part of an evaluation of the project.


Career Technical Education (CTE) is a program that offers a sequence of courses directly related to preparing students for teaching in current or emerging occupations. CTE prepares students for good-paying, high skilled 21st century jobs; provides real-world, hands-on learning; ensures California has skilled and educated workers to keep the economy strong; and reduces the drop-out rate by making school more relevant and keeping students engaged in school. C-REAL evaluates the program, from high school outreach, to the community college and community partners. We are creating a database to study this pathway to teacher education through the award-winning Teacher TRAC program at Cerritos College.

Veterans Project – CSUF

Through a federally funded project, the CSUF Center for Excellence for Veteran Student Success (CEVSS) is initiating a new project to support veteran students by assisting in their transition to the college, and providing academic, financial, emotional, and social support in an effort to increase the enrollment, persistence, and  the four-year graduation rates of veteran students. C-REAL will provide the evaluation for this project and track student persistence over time.

On November 9th 2012,in honoring the student veterans on campus, CREAL participated in the grand opening of the new Veteran Student Services (VSS) office and study space.  This new space will allow the VSS to provide academic, professional, and personal resources to student veterans.  Student veterans now have a space to connect with each other.

A Patriotic Employer Recognition for DR. Person

Dr. Dawn Person was recognized by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) as a patriotic employer after being nominated by a former employee, Yu-Ting Chiu, who was recently deployed. ESGR’s mission is to develop and promote a culture in which all American employers support and value the military service of their employees. This award recognizes employers, like Dr. Person, who prove magnificent support for their National Guard and Reserve employees. Nominations for this award are initiated by employees who illustrate appreciation and gratitude for supportive employers.

Dr. Person veteran Award-croped


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Page updated: September 2, 2015