Fostering Student Success

Fostering Student Success

If the purpose of higher education is to help educate students in their chosen fields of study, then its primary focus is on fostering student success. 

But what does this mean in practice? What is student success, and how do colleges and universities know what they need to do to aid their students?


Fostering student success in and of itself sounds like a simple task. Provide the students with the tools they need to grow and learn. Give them a good environment in which to study and relax after studying, and provide them classes and homework that will test their knowledge and make them think. 

But as all experienced educators know, not all students are the same, and not all of them will grow the same way or be successful under the same circumstances. 

This is where faculty come in to help personalize course materials for their students. The challenge to personalize learning needs for each student becomes much easier with the help of data. 

Data can show where students might be struggling, where they might be falling behind, and can even help suggest ways to promote student success.

Promoting Student Success Through Data

Data allows colleges and universities to understand what their students need so that they can act on an individual level to provide for each student at their own pace. This in turn will help the college or university be more efficient with support resources, allocating them to students who need them most rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.  

According to EDUCAUSE, data solutions can help higher education institutions easily track a student’s progression. Strategically designed data ecosystems that include a data warehouse to capture information from a variety of systems inside and outside the classroom and across the lifecycle of a student will enable a more complete view of their progress. Some of these systems include:

  • CRM (customer relationship management)
    • Application, Student Management, etc. 
  • SIS (student information system)
    • Enrollment, Grades, Awards, etc.
  • LMS (learning management system)
    • Course Activities, Assignments, Tests, Discussions, etc.
  • SSMS (student success management system)
    • Student Interventions, Cohort Management, etc.

Each individual student has a unique journey through college. With advanced data analytics systems in place, higher education institutions are able to track a student’s journey and create one cohesive story to better support the student. These analytics can highlight areas where that student might need a little more assistance.

Access to new data analytic models and tools has allowed campuses to meet students where they are.

The ability to meet students where they are allows higher education institutions to aid their students immediately, creating an environment where students can get the help they need in a timely manner without the risk of having to wait for help, if they get that help, before it's too late.

What the Pandemic Has Taught

With the pandemic came a whole new style of teaching students remotely. This taught colleges and universities to look at their students differently, and brought with it many challenges. Some of these challenges included questions like how to foster student success and engagement during a time of crisis. 

According to EDUCAUSE, the pandemic reminded higher education institutions that it is crucial for faculty to know their students: what students need, which ones are struggling, why they're struggling, which students are leaving and when, and which interventions mattered.

With the help of data, institutional researchers can get answers to all of these questions and help empower everyone to act on them immediately. 

Timely data matters now more than ever as student bodies become more diverse and teaching modalities more varied. The right kind of data analytics can reveal students' just-in-time needs, struggles, and connections, then faculty can quickly evaluate solutions from an impact perspective. 

Data analytics, when properly applied, can not only show where students are struggling but which individual students are struggling. This in turn will help higher education institutions target these individual students for personalized interventions and help create a plan of action moving forward. 

Individually Targeted

An Ohio University study determining how data can improve student success found that by using a Customer Relationship Management tool (CRM), students were able to participate in surveys that helped the university use personalized, targeted messaging to aid students. With this tool they were able to apply individualized approaches to target student outreach.

“The 2011 implementation of a CRM system for student success has supported OU’s ability to provide early and targeted intervention to individual students. Previously, the first accessible feedback on student performance was not available until grades were entered at the end of the first term.”

Faculty who can see where their students might be struggling sooner in the semester can get ahead of the curve and work on these areas before the end of the term, when it’s too late for that kind of support.

“The CRM system supports the collection and analysis of firsthand, student-level surveys and academic information much earlier in the term. These responses come directly from students regarding their academic, social, financial, or other needs and allow for targeted outreach to guide them to the best path for success.”

Allowing students the opportunity to participate in these types of surveys can allow for a more individual and targeted approach to aiding students.

How Invoke Learning Can Help

At Invoke Learning we can bring the CRM data together with all the system data to make the picture of the student even fuller. Now coming out of the pandemic it's more important than ever before to go even further in understanding everything we can about each individual student.

Our InvokeClarity™ solution offers colleges and universities the advanced data lakehouse that combines all of the benefits of a data lake with a data warehouse to bring every bit of an institution’s data ecosystem to bear on critical strategic initiatives. 

Combining InvokeClarity™ with Invoke Learning’s InvokeStudentSuccess™ solution allows higher education institutions to leverage all that information to discover exactly which students are struggling and determine what might be the best course of action. 

InvokeStudentSuccess™ empowers colleges and universities to look at which students are struggling within the first few weeks of the term and take action immediately to support students throughout their journey. 

What’s holding you back today from taking your mission further tomorrow? Find out - and discover just how far you can go. Learn more about Invoke Learning solutions.