Dr Mike Hobbs1, Mr Dan McFadyen2
1Jefferson State Community College, 2Edalex
Background: The JSCC team hypothesised that the days of an institution relying solely on their website, LMS and/or email communications to engage with students are in the past. As with many institutions, JSCC has encountered decreasing student engagement and retention. Many students today expect a mobile- first approach to communications. JSCC took a student-centric approach and investigated the impact of mobile communication technology as a mechanism to drive increased student engagement, achievement and retention.
Methods: JSCC selected the Full Measure Education (FME) platform to deploy a comprehensive multichannel communication plan including data- driven touch points throughout the semester. In addition, JSCC utilises FME to provide coaching for students and to provide staff member insights on communications and advising progress. JSCC sought to engage students based on their aptitudes, interests and aspirations, and pursued analytics-driven communications to deliver personalised and relevant information, and simplify interaction across the entire student lifecycle.
JSCC identified a number of touch-points throughout the semester to automate via the FME platform with the goal of increased engagement and performance. JSCC utilised new communication channels with this initiative: automated SMS, automated push notifications, student mobile form submission and bi- directional SMS messaging for students and coaches. Findings: JSCC used the platform to contact 33,000 prospects and students across 77 campaigns. The outcome of these campaigns saw:
246 students complete a late assessment
40% of students who hadn’t accessed the LMS, logged in within 3 days
34% of students receiving financial aid communication took corrective action within 24 hours
A 3.35% increase in credit hours across contacted students
Discussion: Based on the findings of the initiative, JSCC believe mobile communication channels and technology are central to ensuring a seamless student experience to increase student engagement, activity and outcomes. With Australian university completion rates a er 6 years at their lowest levels since 2008, we are exploring the applicability of the technology platform and programme methodology to the ANZ educational market. Factors that may impact on the translation of this solution to ANZ will also be discussed.