Know Which Students Need Help
Identifying at-risk students in time to make a difference requires that you act on the information
the first day there is a sign of a problem. Starfish has a unique two-prong approach to capturing
the information: first, we automatically mine any existing data about student performance documented
in your existing technologies across campus; second, we encourage the campus community to report
concerns–whether these concerns are seen in the classroom, residence halls, advising offices,
By working with your learning management system (e.g., Blackboard, WebCT, ANGEL, Moodle),
Starfish EARLY ALERT automatically raises a flag for a student based on low grades, assignment
tardiness, and online activity, according to thresholds that are centrally set by your institution.
Similarly, capturing information from your student information system (e.g., Sungard Banner, Datatel
Colleague, Oracle/Peoplesoft SIS, Jenzabar) shows which students are failing midterms, are
late to register, or have been put on probation.
While automation saves a lot of time, not everything about a student is captured by a computer for
data mining. So, Starfish EARLY ALERT enables individual instructors, advisors, coaches, and
residence hall directors to raise concerns that they observe, such as missing class, challenges
with writing or math, or disruptive behavior.
Immediately Communicate Concerns to the Right People
Improving upon what otherwise is a labor-intensive, manual process, Starfish EARLY ALERT then collates these
concerns and, based on your specific policies for different kinds of students, securely
routes the concerns to the appropriate individuals who can help the students. Sometimes the
Student Success Center is on point to help undeclared undergraduates; sometimes it's the
departmental advisor; other times an athletic coordinator or TRiO progam counselor is also
brought into the conversation. Not to mention, often just sending an automated message to
the student about a problem (e.g., not attending class) can fix the situation. And since
the system works on your policies where individuals have a need to know, Starfish EARLY ALERT
addresses FERPA without inappropriately limiting communication.