Some of the initiatives with which the Office of Student Success is involved include:
Students who are struggling may be referred to OSS for individualized, one-on-one, academic coaching. Throughout the semester, coachees meet weekly with an OSS staff member to discuss themes such as time management, productive study strategies, and personal accountability. Approximately 90% of the students who have actively participated in coaching have regained good academic standing after working regularly with an OSS Academic Coach.
Academic Success Workshops are offered to students on Appalachian’s main campus during their first semester of probation. These 90-minute workshops offer tips and resources for regaining good academic standing as quickly as possible. The workshops cover topics ranging from Appalachian’s academic policies to study skills, and are consistently rated as helpful by students. Students may sign up for their required workshop by going to AppSync and searching for “Student Success” in the search bar at the top of the page. Once there, students should choose “Events” to see a list of upcoming workshops and to register for the workshop that best fits their schedule.
As a form of proactive support, OSS partners with the Student Learning Center to request electronic progress reports from faculty. These requests are usually disseminated just before midterm each semester for student athletes, students in the ACCESS program, students in the SSS (TRiO) project, and students in their first term of academic probation. The process begins when faculty receive an email providing a link to the site for the academic progress reports. Once on this site, faculty will log in using their Appalachian State University username and password. In most cases, it only takes a minute or two to complete the form. Any information faculty can provide on students' attendance, participation, and academic progress is very helpful to LAP and OSS staff, who reach out to students to offer support and encouragement. This outreach affords students the opportunity to take action early in the semester and to make meaningful improvement in courses in which they may be struggling.
If a faculty member’s primary concern for a student is his/her lack of attendance, the faculty member can complete and submit an Attendance Alert Form. Staff members from the Office of Student Success (OSS) will reach out to the student and then follow up with the instructor. This initiative helps ensure students are attending classes or dropping classes they are not attending while also keeping faculty members in the loop and letting them know what OSS discovers about the student(s) they referred. If the OSS discovers other concerns, or cannot connect with the student, OSS staff may elect to make a referral to the Early Intervention Team.
Appalachian State University uses Mapworks to help both freshmen and new transfer students successfully launch their academic careers. Mapworks contributes to student success by allowing students, faculty, and staff to better understand new students' strengths, challenges, and needs.
Mapworks is an online resource that helps students stay on track by directing them to Appalachian resources specific to their individual needs, per students' survey responses. At the same time, Mapworks provides a way for all faculty and staff that work with a student to connect and collaborate, ensuring the student receives all the support he or she needs to successfully transition to Appalachian. Faculty and staff are able to see the Mapworks reports for students in their classes and on their advising rosters.
Questions? Please feel free to contact the Office of student Success at 828.262.6987 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You are also welcome to visit our office in 238 I.G. Greer.
OSS advocates for this strengths-based, student-centered approach to academic advising and featured Appreciative Advising at Appalachian's Academic Advising Summit on Tuesday, May 12, 2015.
Staying on track beyond the freshman year is important, but many universities target services most intensively at freshmen. Appalachian is committed to helping students continue on their paths toward full engagement and graduation by developing a robust sophomore through senior year experience to prompt Mountaineers to make the most of their time on campus.
Earning a degree at Appalachian is not just about completing a check sheet of courses and collecting a diploma. We want to help Mountaineers prepare to successfully launch from Appalachian and achieve success in the world beyond our beautiful High Country campus. This requires students to take full advantage of key opportunities from orientation through graduation so that they have not just a polished resume, but a full, rich portfolio packed with meaningful experiences. The Office of Career Development's Four-Year Engagement Plan provides a good guide for this journey. Also, the Aportfolio, which is currently being rolled out to all students at Appalachian, will be a powerful tool to help students demonstrate and make meaning of their experiences in and out of the classroom.
OSS supports high-quality academic advising across campus. In addition to advocating for the Appreciative Advising model of academic advising, OSS is collaborating with units across campus to shape, maintain, and implement the following:
- A University-Wide Advising Mission Statement
- A University-Wide Advising Syllabus
- Faculty and Staff Advisor Training
- Assessment of Academic Advising