Leveraging Technology to Advance Progressive Advising: Tips & Strategies from Colorado College

Articles
 — 
December 7, 2022

It’s well understood that when students are more engaged on campus, they are more likely to remain enrolled and persist to graduation. But to develop a more holistic experience and leave a lasting impression on their students, it is worth rethinking the structure of student support systems.

Currently, only 41% of full-time college students earn a bachelor’s degree in four years. And given the pandemic, 79% of students say they have trouble staying motivated. But institutions across higher ed have the opportunity to empower students to take ownership of their past, present, and future — and having the right tools in place can help.

For Colorado College, “progressive advising” was an important piece of the puzzle. Adopting progressive advising provided equal access to academic support while helping students feel more engaged with their journey to graduation 

In this guide, we offer strategies for other institutions who may be thinking about progressive advising and share how Colorado College (CC) made the shift by leveraging institution-wide support and modern technology.

What is progressive advising?

CC views progressive advising as a way to meet students where they are and offer the right kind of support at the right time. Jane Brynes, Student Success Specialist and Health Professions Advising Manager at Colorado College, likens progressive advising to a progressive dinner where you eat the first course of a meal at one house, the second course at another, and so on. Similarly, advisors can progress students to the relevant offices on campus while supporting their decision-making based on their past, current, and future needs.

“Advising isn’t siloed - it’s a campus-wide effort. To help students be successful, we’ve got to meet them where they are and collaboratively help them progress through campus." - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Why modern technology is key to progressive advising

Today’s students are used to apps like UberEats, Netflix, and Google Maps to navigate everyday life. And because they are familiar with these experiences, they are more likely to engage with them.

Colorado College saw Stellic as a way to balance student independence with proactive advising, while giving students and staff a modern interface with which they could access all relevant student information in one place. From there, advisors could easily identify students who need support from other offices on campus, ensure the relevant parties were informed, and progress students through to them accordingly. Within the platform that was built by and for students, CC’s students became stewards of their own academic journey, while advisors proactively managed potential obstacles along the way.

Designing a “past, present, future” advising paradigm

The Stellic platform enabled Colorado College to reimagine advising while accommodating its block plan structure and surfacing students’ background, schedules, progress, goals, and interests at key points in the advising lifecycle. Below, we explore how this was achieved in more detail.

The Past

Advisors leverage the data in Stellic to communicate with all students, not just those who are most engaged or seek out help themselves.

They can view AP courses students took in high school, credits they may have received elsewhere prior to joining Colorado College, and prior notes that other staff members may have made within the platform. With this information, advisors can better understand the student’s history and ask the right questions.

The Present

With a real-time snapshot of things like students’ majors, minors, GPA, interests, expected graduation date, and courses within their pathway to graduation, advisors instantly gain a comprehensive understanding of where each student currently stands. They also get notified if a student's academic standing is at risk. Identifying these students upfront helps advisors act quickly and ensure no one slips through the cracks.

If needed, advisors can also refer and guide students through to other areas on campus, such as offices for financial aid or disabilities. Built-in appointment scheduling and messaging capabilities also empower advisors to establish greater rapport with their advisees, increasing trust and boosting students’ confidence.

Students use Stellic to view and adjust their block plan schedule, visualize their academic progress, and schedule meetings with their advisors. This, combined with a modern user experience, gives them a sense of agency when designing their college experience while providing direct access to their advisors when needed.

The Future

While it’s easy to get caught up in the present, embracing holistic, progressive advising means advisors can help students envision and get excited about their future.

Stellic’s built-in what-if scenarios allow students to map out multiple journeys and compare them in terms of academic and financial ramifications. Doing so helps students think more deeply about their educational purpose and shows them exactly how they can get to where they want to go. 

“There’s more room for these types of conversations around careers and personal goals when students are already engaged with their past and current progress and planning.” - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Achieving 94% student adoption

By coupling past, present, and future student planning with a shift in their advising approach, Colorado College was able to reach 92% first-year adoption within the first year of implementing Stellic. When students see how far they’ve come and where they’re going within the platform, they can connect to their studies on a deeper level, feeling more motivated to continue.

Today, Colorado College’s overall student engagement with academic planning sits at 94%, and students have felt the direct impact of their school’s progressive advising model:

“I noticed that when I was in meetings with my advisor, we could spend more time talking about career paths, the future, and what made sense for me from a professional standpoint.” - Colorado College Student

Advisors at CC also took to Stellic quickly, reaching 85% adoption to date.

6 learnings from a successful launch

Upon reflection, Byrnes felt Colorado College’s transition to progressive advising was made possible by:

  1. Thinking hard about what’s working and what’s not before making a plan. Developing requirements ahead of time gives you the best chances of establishing a program that actually works for students, advisors, and the campus at large.
  2. Bringing other offices into the conversation. Groups like IT and the Registrar’s Office need to be on board with evaluating solutions that enable progressive advising and modern degree management to avoid creating a siloed student experience.
  3. Creating a separate Advising Office (if you haven’t done so already). Doing so helps students know where to go to find dedicated help.
  4. Get the right software. To make adaptations to your advising and degree planning model, you need technology that can accommodate your institution’s specific needs.
  5. Provide training. All of Colorado College’s academic offices knew about Stellic and were shown how to use it.
  6. Consider prioritizing first-years. New students are eager to participate in university programs, so get them acquainted with new technology and your advising program early.

Putting students in the driver’s seat

While advising support plays a critical role in helping students navigate their academic experience, students should ultimately be the architects of their own futures. Colorado College has fully embraced this notion, empowering students to take more control of their academic journey while transforming their advising model.

If you're interested in learning more about the work Colorado College and other partners have achieved or would like to explore how Stellic could support your campus, please reach out to partnerships@stellic.com

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It’s well understood that when students are more engaged on campus, they are more likely to remain enrolled and persist to graduation. But to develop a more holistic experience and leave a lasting impression on their students, it is worth rethinking the structure of student support systems.

Currently, only 41% of full-time college students earn a bachelor’s degree in four years. And given the pandemic, 79% of students say they have trouble staying motivated. But institutions across higher ed have the opportunity to empower students to take ownership of their past, present, and future — and having the right tools in place can help.

For Colorado College, “progressive advising” was an important piece of the puzzle. Adopting progressive advising provided equal access to academic support while helping students feel more engaged with their journey to graduation 

In this guide, we offer strategies for other institutions who may be thinking about progressive advising and share how Colorado College (CC) made the shift by leveraging institution-wide support and modern technology.

What is progressive advising?

CC views progressive advising as a way to meet students where they are and offer the right kind of support at the right time. Jane Brynes, Student Success Specialist and Health Professions Advising Manager at Colorado College, likens progressive advising to a progressive dinner where you eat the first course of a meal at one house, the second course at another, and so on. Similarly, advisors can progress students to the relevant offices on campus while supporting their decision-making based on their past, current, and future needs.

“Advising isn’t siloed - it’s a campus-wide effort. To help students be successful, we’ve got to meet them where they are and collaboratively help them progress through campus." - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Why modern technology is key to progressive advising

Today’s students are used to apps like UberEats, Netflix, and Google Maps to navigate everyday life. And because they are familiar with these experiences, they are more likely to engage with them.

Colorado College saw Stellic as a way to balance student independence with proactive advising, while giving students and staff a modern interface with which they could access all relevant student information in one place. From there, advisors could easily identify students who need support from other offices on campus, ensure the relevant parties were informed, and progress students through to them accordingly. Within the platform that was built by and for students, CC’s students became stewards of their own academic journey, while advisors proactively managed potential obstacles along the way.

Designing a “past, present, future” advising paradigm

The Stellic platform enabled Colorado College to reimagine advising while accommodating its block plan structure and surfacing students’ background, schedules, progress, goals, and interests at key points in the advising lifecycle. Below, we explore how this was achieved in more detail.

The Past

Advisors leverage the data in Stellic to communicate with all students, not just those who are most engaged or seek out help themselves.

They can view AP courses students took in high school, credits they may have received elsewhere prior to joining Colorado College, and prior notes that other staff members may have made within the platform. With this information, advisors can better understand the student’s history and ask the right questions.

The Present

With a real-time snapshot of things like students’ majors, minors, GPA, interests, expected graduation date, and courses within their pathway to graduation, advisors instantly gain a comprehensive understanding of where each student currently stands. They also get notified if a student's academic standing is at risk. Identifying these students upfront helps advisors act quickly and ensure no one slips through the cracks.

If needed, advisors can also refer and guide students through to other areas on campus, such as offices for financial aid or disabilities. Built-in appointment scheduling and messaging capabilities also empower advisors to establish greater rapport with their advisees, increasing trust and boosting students’ confidence.

Students use Stellic to view and adjust their block plan schedule, visualize their academic progress, and schedule meetings with their advisors. This, combined with a modern user experience, gives them a sense of agency when designing their college experience while providing direct access to their advisors when needed.

The Future

While it’s easy to get caught up in the present, embracing holistic, progressive advising means advisors can help students envision and get excited about their future.

Stellic’s built-in what-if scenarios allow students to map out multiple journeys and compare them in terms of academic and financial ramifications. Doing so helps students think more deeply about their educational purpose and shows them exactly how they can get to where they want to go. 

“There’s more room for these types of conversations around careers and personal goals when students are already engaged with their past and current progress and planning.” - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Achieving 94% student adoption

By coupling past, present, and future student planning with a shift in their advising approach, Colorado College was able to reach 92% first-year adoption within the first year of implementing Stellic. When students see how far they’ve come and where they’re going within the platform, they can connect to their studies on a deeper level, feeling more motivated to continue.

Today, Colorado College’s overall student engagement with academic planning sits at 94%, and students have felt the direct impact of their school’s progressive advising model:

“I noticed that when I was in meetings with my advisor, we could spend more time talking about career paths, the future, and what made sense for me from a professional standpoint.” - Colorado College Student

Advisors at CC also took to Stellic quickly, reaching 85% adoption to date.

6 learnings from a successful launch

Upon reflection, Byrnes felt Colorado College’s transition to progressive advising was made possible by:

  1. Thinking hard about what’s working and what’s not before making a plan. Developing requirements ahead of time gives you the best chances of establishing a program that actually works for students, advisors, and the campus at large.
  2. Bringing other offices into the conversation. Groups like IT and the Registrar’s Office need to be on board with evaluating solutions that enable progressive advising and modern degree management to avoid creating a siloed student experience.
  3. Creating a separate Advising Office (if you haven’t done so already). Doing so helps students know where to go to find dedicated help.
  4. Get the right software. To make adaptations to your advising and degree planning model, you need technology that can accommodate your institution’s specific needs.
  5. Provide training. All of Colorado College’s academic offices knew about Stellic and were shown how to use it.
  6. Consider prioritizing first-years. New students are eager to participate in university programs, so get them acquainted with new technology and your advising program early.

Putting students in the driver’s seat

While advising support plays a critical role in helping students navigate their academic experience, students should ultimately be the architects of their own futures. Colorado College has fully embraced this notion, empowering students to take more control of their academic journey while transforming their advising model.

If you're interested in learning more about the work Colorado College and other partners have achieved or would like to explore how Stellic could support your campus, please reach out to partnerships@stellic.com

Leveraging Technology to Advance Progressive Advising: Tips & Strategies from Colorado College

Articles
 — 
December 7, 2022

It’s well understood that when students are more engaged on campus, they are more likely to remain enrolled and persist to graduation. But to develop a more holistic experience and leave a lasting impression on their students, it is worth rethinking the structure of student support systems.

Currently, only 41% of full-time college students earn a bachelor’s degree in four years. And given the pandemic, 79% of students say they have trouble staying motivated. But institutions across higher ed have the opportunity to empower students to take ownership of their past, present, and future — and having the right tools in place can help.

For Colorado College, “progressive advising” was an important piece of the puzzle. Adopting progressive advising provided equal access to academic support while helping students feel more engaged with their journey to graduation 

In this guide, we offer strategies for other institutions who may be thinking about progressive advising and share how Colorado College (CC) made the shift by leveraging institution-wide support and modern technology.

What is progressive advising?

CC views progressive advising as a way to meet students where they are and offer the right kind of support at the right time. Jane Brynes, Student Success Specialist and Health Professions Advising Manager at Colorado College, likens progressive advising to a progressive dinner where you eat the first course of a meal at one house, the second course at another, and so on. Similarly, advisors can progress students to the relevant offices on campus while supporting their decision-making based on their past, current, and future needs.

“Advising isn’t siloed - it’s a campus-wide effort. To help students be successful, we’ve got to meet them where they are and collaboratively help them progress through campus." - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Why modern technology is key to progressive advising

Today’s students are used to apps like UberEats, Netflix, and Google Maps to navigate everyday life. And because they are familiar with these experiences, they are more likely to engage with them.

Colorado College saw Stellic as a way to balance student independence with proactive advising, while giving students and staff a modern interface with which they could access all relevant student information in one place. From there, advisors could easily identify students who need support from other offices on campus, ensure the relevant parties were informed, and progress students through to them accordingly. Within the platform that was built by and for students, CC’s students became stewards of their own academic journey, while advisors proactively managed potential obstacles along the way.

Designing a “past, present, future” advising paradigm

The Stellic platform enabled Colorado College to reimagine advising while accommodating its block plan structure and surfacing students’ background, schedules, progress, goals, and interests at key points in the advising lifecycle. Below, we explore how this was achieved in more detail.

The Past

Advisors leverage the data in Stellic to communicate with all students, not just those who are most engaged or seek out help themselves.

They can view AP courses students took in high school, credits they may have received elsewhere prior to joining Colorado College, and prior notes that other staff members may have made within the platform. With this information, advisors can better understand the student’s history and ask the right questions.

The Present

With a real-time snapshot of things like students’ majors, minors, GPA, interests, expected graduation date, and courses within their pathway to graduation, advisors instantly gain a comprehensive understanding of where each student currently stands. They also get notified if a student's academic standing is at risk. Identifying these students upfront helps advisors act quickly and ensure no one slips through the cracks.

If needed, advisors can also refer and guide students through to other areas on campus, such as offices for financial aid or disabilities. Built-in appointment scheduling and messaging capabilities also empower advisors to establish greater rapport with their advisees, increasing trust and boosting students’ confidence.

Students use Stellic to view and adjust their block plan schedule, visualize their academic progress, and schedule meetings with their advisors. This, combined with a modern user experience, gives them a sense of agency when designing their college experience while providing direct access to their advisors when needed.

The Future

While it’s easy to get caught up in the present, embracing holistic, progressive advising means advisors can help students envision and get excited about their future.

Stellic’s built-in what-if scenarios allow students to map out multiple journeys and compare them in terms of academic and financial ramifications. Doing so helps students think more deeply about their educational purpose and shows them exactly how they can get to where they want to go. 

“There’s more room for these types of conversations around careers and personal goals when students are already engaged with their past and current progress and planning.” - Jane Byrnes, Student Success Specialist and Pre-Health Professions Advising Manager, Colorado College

Achieving 94% student adoption

By coupling past, present, and future student planning with a shift in their advising approach, Colorado College was able to reach 92% first-year adoption within the first year of implementing Stellic. When students see how far they’ve come and where they’re going within the platform, they can connect to their studies on a deeper level, feeling more motivated to continue.

Today, Colorado College’s overall student engagement with academic planning sits at 94%, and students have felt the direct impact of their school’s progressive advising model:

“I noticed that when I was in meetings with my advisor, we could spend more time talking about career paths, the future, and what made sense for me from a professional standpoint.” - Colorado College Student

Advisors at CC also took to Stellic quickly, reaching 85% adoption to date.

6 learnings from a successful launch

Upon reflection, Byrnes felt Colorado College’s transition to progressive advising was made possible by:

  1. Thinking hard about what’s working and what’s not before making a plan. Developing requirements ahead of time gives you the best chances of establishing a program that actually works for students, advisors, and the campus at large.
  2. Bringing other offices into the conversation. Groups like IT and the Registrar’s Office need to be on board with evaluating solutions that enable progressive advising and modern degree management to avoid creating a siloed student experience.
  3. Creating a separate Advising Office (if you haven’t done so already). Doing so helps students know where to go to find dedicated help.
  4. Get the right software. To make adaptations to your advising and degree planning model, you need technology that can accommodate your institution’s specific needs.
  5. Provide training. All of Colorado College’s academic offices knew about Stellic and were shown how to use it.
  6. Consider prioritizing first-years. New students are eager to participate in university programs, so get them acquainted with new technology and your advising program early.

Putting students in the driver’s seat

While advising support plays a critical role in helping students navigate their academic experience, students should ultimately be the architects of their own futures. Colorado College has fully embraced this notion, empowering students to take more control of their academic journey while transforming their advising model.

If you're interested in learning more about the work Colorado College and other partners have achieved or would like to explore how Stellic could support your campus, please reach out to partnerships@stellic.com

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