Each month, this column will highlight the supporting initiatives that are intended to help FSCJ achieve the goals identified in our Strategic Plan.
Initiative Supporting Strategic Plan Goal #3: Increase Retention and Completion
In an effort to improve student success and retention, the Office of the Provost allocated special funding to the Library and Learning Commons (LLC) to support the implementation of an enhanced tutoring service tracking and reporting system known as Accudemia. Accudemia is a web-based academic center management system that offers many benefits including: student visit tracking, appointment management, feedback collection, student-faculty interactions and much more. Tracking and assessment of tutoring services offered via Accudemia helps the College document the importance of tutoring and other LLC services on student success.
Accudemia provides the College with detailed self-reported student login information. The data collected is much more robust than what was previously available through manual student log-in records kept and tabulated at each campus/center LLC.
The Library and Learning Commons successfully completed implementation of the new Accudemia student tracking in August 2015. The data results from the Accudemia system indicate that for the 11-month reporting period August 2015 – July 2016:
- 185,184 students logged in for LLC services at all College campuses and centers
- 21,584 unique student users logged in to the LLCs
- 56,103 students logged in to receive tutoring services
Using the Accudemia time and attendance data, staff have been able to accurately monitor students’ usage of tutoring services and, more importantly, to correlate the data to student success. Preliminary data provided by the Office of Institutional Analytics and Research for gateway math courses reveal a positive correlation between students’ use of tutoring and course success.
In Spring 2016, students who were enrolled in gateway math courses (MAT 1033, MAC 1105, MGF 1106, MGF 1107) and who utilized tutoring, attained higher course success rates, with “success” defined as the attainment of a “C” or higher, than peers who did not receive tutoring. The most significant difference was noted in MAT 1033 and MAC 1105, math gateway courses that prepare students for a STEM-focused academic pathway.
The LLC plans to build upon the preliminary findings of gateway math courses, and conduct much more extensive research to validate the identified correlation.
In addition to tutoring services recorded within the Accudemia system, students were provided 24/7 online tutoring support through another LLC service known as Smarthinking. Over the reporting period, July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016, students engaged in 6,491 Smarthinking online tutoring sessions. Student satisfaction feedback data provided through the Smarthinking system indicates that students are extremely happy using the online tutoring service.
To date, information provided by Accudemia and Smarthinking has given the LLC greater insight into student usage of tutoring services, as well as the impact of those services on student success. As the system gathers more critical data, the LLC will be better able to document and report the correlations of student success and tutoring support for other College courses and programs. For additional information, please contact Tom Messner at firstname.lastname@example.org or 646-2175.