Student success is an integral part of higher education institutions. Technology leadership teams, universities, higher learning institutions, and departments across various fields have prioritized student success yearly. Implementing strategic plans for optimizing student success has become more critical than ever before. Explore why student success is so vital to your higher education institute's processes.
Why Is Student Success Important and What Does It Mean?
Before understanding the importance of success in a student's life, you'll need to explore what student success means and how to define it. While many institutions have their own version of success, a general definition includes a determination of goals and personal situations measured by each individual student. The University of Southern California defines student success as a measurement of student engagement and outcomes.
Many higher education institutions aim to assist at-risk students who are more likely to drop out, such as first-year, minority, and marginalized students. Defining student success is integral to helping these students, as increased academic success is linked to student happiness. However, no single comprehensive statement or a simple set of metrics can offer a complete picture of how students succeed every year at different colleges.
How Do Higher Education Institutions Define Student Success?
Student success is an essential part of higher education and is often one of the top priorities for leadership teams in departments, institutions, and technology. One reason for this is that, when students succeed, it reflects well on the teams and higher education institutions.
With educational organizations placing such an emphasis on student success, knowing how to measure it is vital. Higher education institutions look at:
- Graduation rates
- Number of successful course completions
- Retention or persistence rates
- Academic achievement
- Educational/degree attainment
- Milestone of credits completed
- Student advancement
Each component plays a role in the institution's critical decision-making process. Looking at the data and facts collected from the measures allows educational organizations to determine which changes are necessary to improve campus life, classes, and student-related needs. Students and educational institutions benefit when a collective effort focuses on student success.
Many U.S. states are tying funding to performance measures, like graduation and retention rates, so it's crucial for higher education organizations to remain vigilant about student success. How your facility defines success may differ from other institutions, so ensure your measuring criteria are clear.
How to Improve Student Success
There are several methods that your institution can use to promote students' success. These simple tips will help you support your students and support them in achieving the goals they set out when they enrolled.
- Get to know students: It's easy for students to get lost in the system, especially in larger institutions. For students to succeed, they need to feel like more than a number. Be intentional about getting to know students and gathering as much information about their backgrounds, strengths, and goals. Ask the right questions so you can understand what they need to succeed.
- Match students to appropriate resources: Once you know your students, you can personalize the type of resources they can access. These resources include financial, academic, social, mental health, and physical health support. While some students may explore some resources more than others, a holistic approach can improve student outcomes.
- Provide continuous support: Students often only receive the support they need in the first few months of enrollment. Success in college is a long-term goal — students need help throughout the journey. Student advisors need to be engaged and proactive by monitoring and checking in on students throughout their degrees.
- Encourage a growth mindset: Some institutions encourage students to have a growth mindset, meaning that it takes time to know or excel at some things, which is normal. A growth mindset also helps students who have to take courses that don't directly contribute to their degree. They can see the value that these courses add to their success.
- Make services accessible: Technological advances have made learning materials more accessible to many students. Explore technology trends to enhance learning and ensure students can access materials anywhere and anytime.
- Create an inclusive and equitable campus: Students who succeed at university or college have a sense of belonging and feel valued. Institutions that value and endorse inclusion and diversity create a sense of pride in students and support every student's success regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, disability, or socioeconomic status.
Enhance Your Institution's Student Success With Watermark
When you need a way to stay on top of crucial metrics like retention, Watermark can help. We offer a software solution that links multiple data sources on your campus. The software collects and analyzes data, which we use to predict student success and identify risks. Our system also:
- Creates transparency across your campus: Remain honest and transparent while communicating with staff and students. The various departments and faculties in your organization will be on the same page while fostering student success using our software solution.
- Provides a holistic and proactive approach: Be more proactive about understanding student success and how to increase it with our comprehensive solutions.
- Offers student-centered coaching strategies: Receive personalized coaching strategies and learning opportunities to help your institution focus more on students and their success. Our services also enable you to find more productive and individualized ways to stage interventions for students if needed.
Implementing resources to improve student success benefits not only your institution but also the happiness of your students. Your faculty and staff will be ready to intervene and assist students so that they are better prepared and successful upon graduation. By helping you combine the best practices from new and existing support processes, technology, and people, we'll bring you closer to increasing efficiencies and addressing student success.
Learn More About Our Student Success Services
Watermark is ready to help you manage and increase student success rates at your higher education institution with our innovative software solutions. We provide measurement services, data collection solutions, and reliable analysis software to higher education institutions.
About the AuthorMore Content by Watermark Insights