Improving student success metrics like persistence, graduation, learning, and career outcomes is core for institutions in all sectors of higher education and consistently tops the priority lists of presidents, provosts, and business leaders. More recently, student success has become of interest and concern to IT leaders, who support technology components of student progress such as early-warning systems, advising platforms, and analytics tools.
Download the complete publication or explore the table of contents to learn how IT and campus partners can use data across the student life cycle to guide more efficient and effective student success decisions.
IT is foundational to student success efforts
The increasing attention to student success at the institutional level has involved stakeholders across the administrative and academic realm. Many individuals and departments are responsible for aspects of student success, but IT leaders have impact across all units because they support the data collection and storage, advanced analyses, and delivery mechanisms that make planning and intervention possible.
IT can provide data that will allow stakeholders to see how specific processes, interim outcomes, interactions, and behaviors affect long-term outcomes. Most institutions are only beginning to leverage technologies and systems that record this information. As a result, CIOs have an opportunity to structure, coordinate, and deliver this new data to partners in the academy as well as support offices.
Lots of technology investments, but poor usage
While more institutions and leaders have come to realize that classroom interactions are a critical source of student success data, faculty adoption has not accompanied investments in new technology. A good example is the use of LMS systems to track attendance—and while the LMS is not the only tool which institutions can use to track course attendance, faculty adoption rates demonstrate a troubling trend.
While these trends can be discouraging to those seeking to raise student success rates, low adoption may also reflect a failure on the part of central administration to demonstrate the ROI of these tools to faculty, who care deeply about student outcomes but have limited time to devote to new projects.
The 15 practices outlined in the remainder of this study will help you build a more robust IT structure and elevate IT's role in student success.
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