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IT’s Increasing Role In Student Success

mobile-dublabspickup IT's Increasing Role In Student SuccessPlanning for Student Success


Higher ed institutions continuously strive to help students succeed, but unfortunately, the path to student success is rarely simple. Only four in ten students (39%) actually graduate within four years, and just 59% are able to complete their degrees within six years. Concerns about these metrics are driving schools to concentrate on planning for student success through a number of ways.

Institutes are turning towards various strategic tools and technologies to improve student experience and achieve a higher student success rates. With support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, EDUCAUSE is exploring student success planning methodology (iPASS: Integrated Planning for Advising and Student Success). iPASS is a consolidated approach to student success, that encourages shared ownership for educational progress among students, faculty and staff. It includes those that lead to improved educational outcomes.

iPASS strategic technologies are ones that institutes are likely to implement in the near future. The 2017 Trends and Technologies: iPASS report by EDUCAUSE covers 13 technologies and 11 trends included in the iPASS. According to the report, institutions are currently planning to pilot and deploy the following iPASS strategic technologies:

  • Use of APIs
  • Technologies to map students’ educational plans
  • Technologies to trigger interventions based on students’ behavior or faculty input
  • Mobile app development
  • Technologies to audit degrees

Overall, the report emphasizes the significant strategic role IT has in supporting the institutional objective of improving graduation rates. This means that IT leaders are best able to translate this objective into a holistic technology strategy. And, as a part of this strategy, IT leaders understand that they need to reach students where they spend the most time – through mobile devices.

This is the power of mobile apps in higher education: providing the tools students require to stay on track.

What considerations should go into a campus mobile app in planning for student success?

  1. Simplified user experience: find important information easily, with just one or two clicks.
  2. Native integration to enterprise systems: by bringing in data from the LMS and SIS, it helps students focus on what’s important.
  3. Personalized notifications: A new grade? An updated assignment? Students need to know quickly. Instead of placing this information behind multiple logins, sending a notification to the student’s phone presents the information to them, so that they don’t need to search for it.

A recent study supports the role of campus mobile apps in facilitating student success. An analysis by Rapid Insight shows that use of mobile apps improves retention rates by 2%. Students that used the campus mobile app were significantly more likely to retain, improving student success rates.

Meg Robinson is the Senior Director of Marketing at DubLabs visit with DubLabs at EDUCAUSE in Philadelphia October 31- November 3rd, Booth #1349.