GEAR UP is a data-driven initiative that is evaluated annually throughout the grant project to assess progress toward goals, objectives, and performance indicators. Research-based strategies are used to improve college and career readiness among students in the 11 counties that we serve. Here are a few resources to show some of the supporting research used to develop our strategies.

College Ready Academics

Paths to Degree Completion From High School Through College (Adelman, 2006)


"The academic intensity of the student's high school curriculum still counts more than anything providing momentum toward completing a bachelor's degree."

  • "Students who take a challenging curriculum, beginning in the middle school, tend to perform better academically in high school and are better prepared for college than those who take less rigorous courses." (ACT, 2004)
  • "Many students underestimate what classes they will need to adequately prepare for college, and many middle school students do not take the courses prerequisite for advanced high school classes" (Wimberly & Noeth, 2005)
  • "If teachers demand high expectations from their students and engage them in tasks that interest and involve them, they will promote self-esteem and build students' confidence and academic performance." (Brophy, 2008, 2010)
  • (Mindset Kit, Student Mindset Survey, etc.)
  • - A free resource for parents and educators who want to foster adaptive learning mindsets.
  • - When students and educators have a growth mindset, they understand that intelligence can be developed.
  • College Foundation of North Carolina -
  • National Council on Community and Education Partnerships -