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High-Impact Practices

High-impact practices (HIPS) are programs that take implement the broad goals of student engagement and meaningful learning experiences. These programs aim to help students apply academic knowledge across different settings and with different types of people. The combination of this application of knowledge in various settings, HIPS also look to foster deep learning by connecting students with faculty in research, writing-intensive courses and culminating experiences. Research has shown that when students engage in these activities that first-year retention, overall retention and graduations rates are positively affected. These outcomes are especially beneficial to underserved student groups.


Discovering High-Impact Practices and Experiential Learning at CSUSM Training Course

Course Dates: March 25, 2024-April 26, 2024

A Faculty Center Self-Paced Training Course

Facilitator: Emily Merryweather, Faculty Center Fellow for HIPs and Experiential Learning

Deadline to Apply: March 11, 2024

This self-paced course is aimed at strengthening a deeper understanding of dynamic High-Impact Practices and essential methods for fostering engaged learning that promotes an Experiential Learning Cycle. Importantly, you will also discover how to connect with various departments and embark on your journey to implement HIPs effectively. Learn where to find opportunities right here on campus and acquire the tools and strategies to kickstart your engagement with these innovative teaching methods.

This course provides a supportive and collaborative environment for faculty members like you to enhance your teaching strategies and inspire your students through High-Impact Practices (HIPs). HIPs offer transformative, active learning techniques that extend beyond traditional education methods, fostering deep student engagement and promoting profound learning experiences. These practices can serve as your gateway to more impactful teaching.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, you will:

  • Develop a deeper understanding of the various High-Impact Practices (HIPs) and their applications in teaching.
  • Explore how faculty at CSUSM are currently using HIPs to enhance teaching.
  • Identify connections across the university and in the community that support opportunities for engaged learning.

Course Overview

This course contains 5 modules, each module contains a series of readings and videos along with a brief assignment. You must view each page in sequence. Once each module is complete, the next module will open for participation. You can work at your own pace, and log in and out as needed. Please note that viewing the links to external websites and downloading the PDF documents are encouraged; however, these are not requirements for completing this course. Upon successful completion of this course, you will receive a Certificate of Completion via email. In addition, you will be awarded a digital badge of accomplishment from Badgr.

Time Commitment and Compensation 

This training session will conducted entirely via a self-paced asynchronous course and will take about 12 hours on average of time in total. Faculty will receive $500 training stipend for completing all modules by April 26 and earning a passing score of at least 80% or higher on required assignments/assessments. Meeting the internal deadlines for self-paced modules strongly recommended in order to get the most out of this course and get feedback from peers and facilitator.

Who Should Apply?

Faculty of all ranks from all colleges with faculty appointments in Spring 2024 are welcome to apply! 

Priority consideration will be given to faculty who not yet participated in a Faculty Center paid training opportunity for Academic Year 2023/24.

For questions about the training or application, please contact Emily Merryweather at

How will faculty be selected?

  • Stated interest in high impact practices and experiential learning approaches for your teaching at CSUSM  
  • Diverse representation of different ranks, disciplines, and colleges 
  • Priority for faculty working towards tenure and promotion
  • Space will be limited to up to 10 participants  

Apply Now

Only Unit 3 faculty members who will be on contract with an existing Unit 3 appointment during the entire time frame of the training or professional development opportunity are eligible to be considered for a stipend. Faculty may not request or accept professional development and/or training under this program unless they are on active pay status as a faculty bargaining unit employee. Summer stipends can only be offered to faculty who will be employed the preceding spring and subsequent fall semesters. 

Faculty are limited to a maximum of $10,000 in stipends for faculty training and professional development per fiscal year. Faculty cannot accept an offer for a stipend that will cause them to exceed this $10,000 annual limit. 

All faculty members accepting a stipend must fulfill all of the stated terms and expectations that constitute completion of the training or development activity to receive the stipend. 

CSUSM Engaged Education Definitions

This section will explore the literature on High impact practices as well as some of the high-impact practices taking place at CSUSM


  • First-Year Seminars
  • Common Intellectual Experiences
  • Learning Communities
  • Writing-Intensive Courses
  • Collaborative Assignments and Projects
  • Undergraduate Research
  • Diversity/Global Learning
  • Community-Based Learning
  • Internships
  • Capstone Courses and Projects


An expanded list of high-impact practices


Aside from faculty that institute high-impact pedagogy into their classes, California State San Marcos has several high-impact programs in which faculty can participate.