Make It Matter: A Collaborative Student-Led Engagement and Persistence Program

Turner Bohlen, Lindy Elkins-Tanton, Carolyn Bickers, James Tanton

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Students stay in school at higher rates if they understand the value of their learning and if they are intrinsically motivated by the topics. The student-centered program Make it Matter is designed to give students a reason to persist through school. This open inquiry-based process guides students through the process of doing research and producing outcomes (such as an event, a publication, or a work of art) and can be applied to any topic. Pilots are being run over a range of education levels on a variety of topics, including English Language Arts and undergraduate STEM research opportunities, which we discuss here. Initial results from the high school English Language Arts program showed a 30% reduction in failing grades as compared with the previous quarter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInnovations in Learning and Technology for the Workplace and Higher Education - Proceedings of ‘The Learning Ideas Conference, 2021
EditorsDavid Guralnick, Michael E. Auer, Antonella Poce
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)9783030906764
StatePublished - 2022
EventThe Learning Ideas Conference, TLIC 2021 - Virtual, Online
Duration: Jun 14 2021Jun 18 2021

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Networks and Systems
Volume349 LNNS
ISSN (Print)2367-3370
ISSN (Electronic)2367-3389


ConferenceThe Learning Ideas Conference, TLIC 2021
CityVirtual, Online


  • Intrinsic motivation
  • Open inquiry
  • Persistence
  • Technology-enabled

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Signal Processing
  • Computer Networks and Communications


Dive into the research topics of 'Make It Matter: A Collaborative Student-Led Engagement and Persistence Program'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this