Seven Things You Should Consider: Early Warning and Student Tracking Systems

Focus on student success, not the race against the clock.

All the research shows that the earlier you can identify and help at-risk students, the more likely they will be successful.  We don’t have to tell you, though, that the process to identify at-risk students and connect them to the right support resources can be very intensive and time-consuming—and time is the enemy.

Many institutions still rely on midterm student performance information or surveys—electronic or paper—to learn about a student’s problems. Unfortunately, midterm grades are often too late and students are not always forthcoming on surveys.  Even then, “someone” on campus has to search for other instructors or staff who may have interacted with the student and determine who should intervene.

Finally, institutions have to hope that, when the contact is made, the student follows through on the recommended services.  Unfortunately, the end of the term often arrives before the student has a chance to obtain the needed assistance.

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