A Graduating Advising pilot program aimed at bolstering success rates for provisional graduate students is seeing promising early results.
The pilot involves a small experienced team of advisors providing more personal attention to 135 provisional students in the M.A., MBA, psychology and justice studies programs. Early results showed a 6 percent increase in student success. Plus, 90 percent of students registered for the next term, compared with 72 percent of non-pilot participants, according to Graduate Academic Advising Senior Director Chelsea Croteau.
About 26 percent of SNHU’s new online graduate students are provisional, defined as those with undergraduate GPAs of 2.75 or lower. If they do well in their first two classes, they are unconditionally accepted. Provisionally accepted students typically don’t perform as well in their first classes as their non-provisional peers.
The pilot features dedicated advisors working with a smaller student population, so they have more time to help students get acclimated to Blackboard and mySNHU, keep tabs on upcoming assignments and assist students with time management and navigating potential roadblocks. As students progress in their programs, advisors will help them become more self-reliant and eventually transition them to the standard advising model, Croteau said.
The pilot is helping the team identify which students may benefit most from the increased attention. For example, MBA students have not been as receptive and did not demonstrate a substantial difference in student success. However, early numbers were encouraging for the 44 justice studies and psychology students. At week four, all of the justice studies students and 76 percent of the psychology students were succeeding.
“The progress so far is substantial,” Croteau said.