Identifying At-Risk Students to Decrease Attrition

Student retention will always remain as a critical factor for colleges and universities. The more successful their students are, the more attractive the institution becomes. As time goes by, institutions should start to focus on implementing a strong early warning system that pulls student information from various campus systems to identify and engage with at-risk students before it is too late.


Identifying at-risk students can be a difficult task. Since the typical class size per tutor continues to grow, it is hard for them to truly “know” their students. Also, many legal issues and battles limit the tutors from knowing their students at a personal level.

How to identify at-risk students?
With each institution having different parameters for identifying student at-risk, there are few simple and standard ways to measure at-risk student behavior in a quantifiable manner.
Grades: The first and most obvious metric to observe when looking for at-risk student is grades. What if the student gets started of his semester with low scores? For the students who score low in the beginning, having a conversation with them may be the only help they need. Maybe they just need motivation, or they might need assistance with study skills, writing skills, etc.
Keep track of student grades whose scores are getting declined over a period of time. Again, a conversation might help, or this might be a good time to either alert the administration or contact the student counselor for assistance. The administration or counselor may have already heard other concerns about that student and have a better understanding of what intervention strategies can be adopted.
Absenteeism: Another at-risk student behavior that can be easily tracked is tardiness or absenteeism. If a student continues to either be late for class or simply not attending, this is another opportunity to alert either the administration or the counselor.
Behavior: Finally, disruptive behavior is a sign of at-risk student that can be easily monitored. If a student is being regularly disruptive, this is probably a time when that student should be forced to see the administration for either discipline or an intervention of some kind, as attempting to intervene in the classroom can cause more disruption to other students.

Technology in identifying at-risk students:
New technologies can provide meaningful learning experiences for all students, especially those at-risk of educational failure. Schools that capitalize on the relationship between technology and education reform will help students to develop higher order skills and to function effectively in the world beyond the classroom.


Now, with the introduction of the Early Warning System, 360 Degree Student View, Keep Warm Hub, and Student Help desk feature that comes as part of Constituent relationship management (CRM), the tutor can set up rules in the Early Warning System to flag students’ performance, attendance, and other key course events that are required for student success and the counselors can implement effective intervention strategies by using other CRM features like Keep Warm Hub or Appointment booking.

For example, the instructor can trigger alerts when a student’s score on a graded assignment or assessment falls below a certain level. Positive feedback to motivate students who exceed a performance level is another type of alert that can be set up in the Early Warning system. Students who do not complete course work when it is due can be readily identified by setting a due-date rule for notification. Last date of course access is a way to identify students who have not logged into the course for a specified number of days. A customized message can be sent directly to students who meet certain conditions established in the Early Warning System. A log of all the messages sent to students is produced automatically and is searchable by date, rule type and student.

For a high-level view of students’ performance, the CRM has a 360 Degree Student View where tutors can see the Early Warning System reports and can get to know more about the student history.

Some key features of a CRM:
CRM software with below features can help easily identify students at-risk and can be easy for student counselor or teachers to implement effective intervention strategies to engage with students and improve success rates.

  1. 360 Degree View
  2. Early Warning System
  3. Keep Warm Hub
  4. Events and Workshops
  5. Student Helpdesk
  6. Appointment Booking
  7. Co-created Learning Lounge
  8. Success App for Learners

Students, especially those who are early in the life-cycle, have to navigate the campus ecosystem to get what they want and deliver what the college needs.

Author: Higher Education CRM


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s