Improving Student Persistence Campus-Wide
“The Starfish pilot was implemented as a statistically designed experimental model to determine if the intervention using the Starfish software made a significant difference in student retention and success. After a two-year pilot implementation period we found that the answer was a resounding yes.”
– Judith Marwick, Ed.D., Provost, Harper College
Harper College launched “Project Success” as a two-year pilot beginning in the fall 2011. A primary component of the program was the use of the Starfish® Enterprise Success Platform™ to identify at-risk students as early as possible and connect them with support resources on campus.
The College reports that students identified through the Starfish platform who subsequently met with a counselor during the semester were significantly more likely to complete their courses and register in the subsequent semester. In addition, during the pilot period:
- Faculty participation was strong. On average, 68% of faculty used the Starfish platform to communicate a concern about a student or to acknowledge a student’s good work.
- Students took action based on communication from the Starfish platform. In the first year of the pilot, 56% of students were identified for needing extra attention, and of those, 77% met with their counselor. In the second year of the pilot, 63% of students were identified, and of those, 74% met with their counselor before the end of the semester.
- Student persistence has improved. In the first year of the pilot, 80% of the students in the program persisted fall to spring, compared with 70% of students who were not in the program. In year two, the fall-to-spring persistence rate for students in the program was nearly 83%, while the College average was 76%.
Learn more about Starfish at Harper College:
- Harper College Project Success Honored as a Model of Excellence – University Business, March 2015
- Harper College Reports Improvements in Student Persistence as a Result of Campus-wide Initiative – Press Release, March 2014
- Starfish Retention Solutions Announces 2014 Starfish 360 Award Winners – Press Release, September 2013
- Community College Uses Student Tracking Software to Improve Completion Rates – Campus Technology, May 2013
- Harper College Partners With Starfish Retention Solutions to Drive Gains in Developmental Course Completion – Press Release, March 2013
Hear their story:
- Project Success! – Archived Webinar, April 2014
- Utilizing Technology to Help More Students Persist to College-Level Courses – Archived Webinar, March 2013