When Student “Signals” Mean You’re Too Late

Did you know that 1/3 of students who stop out do so only after one term?

Those first few weeks, those first few assignments, and those first few interactions can make all the difference. It is at this point when students tend to decide that they can do this, or that they can’t.

Good intentions exist. Yet if faculty, advisors, and other support personnel wait for data to show them that a student is struggling, often times it is too late to make a difference. Rather, effective retention strategies require outreach before those signals come to light.

The key is being proactive. Enrollment, academic, and behavioral data assembled through predictive modeling allows you to tag at-risk students and connect with them prior to their signs of disengagement.

At Helix Education, we rely on proactive intervention strategies to help institutions reach out before it’s too late. For example, discovery calls early in the enrollment process can help you connect with students and identify any risk factors, determining:

  • Learning and extracurricular issues
  • Student objectives and goals
  • An action plan for getting there

We also advise connecting students with institutional academic resources right from the get-go. When students know there is someone familiar in their corner, they are more comfortable reaching out themselves. Examples include:

  • Academic tutoring
  • Degree planning
  • Professional advising

When it comes to retention, it’s never too soon to reach out.

Sarah Horn

As the VP of Retention at Helix Education, Sarah brings unique insight into student retention from more than a decade of experience in higher education, nearly all in operations. She has designed, scaled and managed a success coaching program for an online Associate's Degree, and has a tremendous amount of experience aligning and implementing relevant, practical retention strategies that drive results. Previously, she worked for Inside Track as Campus Director, implementing large-scale partnership. Sarah is a graduate of The University of Rochester and earned her Master's degree at John F. Kennedy University.