Technology Conference Preconference Workshop
Sunday, July 14, 8:00 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Workshop Fee: $110

Enhancing Student Success: Definitions, Data, and Decisions
What does it mean for you?

Student success can be defined in many ways. Increased retention, higher graduation rates, and better student decisions are just examples. More recently, students’ achievement of their own educational goals is being used as a measure of student success, especially at institutions where a student goal may be learning new skills or updating old ones (i.e., not necessarily graduation). In any case, collection of data regarding student success is now an integral part of the operational mission of most institutions. In addition to information collected as part of an admissions application, we also regularly collect information about student course selection, their performance, demographic information of retained (and not retained) students, and we request  data from faculty regarding students who may be at-risk in their classes.  With the advent of data mining (aka “Big Data”) all of this information can be aggregated, sifted and analyzed to guide institutions and to assist students in reaching their academic or post-academic goals. 

As Registrars and Admissions professionals, what are our roles associated with the collection and administration of the data as it relates to student success, goal achievement, and graduation?  More challenging than data collection and administration, perhaps, is responding to that data in meaningful ways when focusing on student success and finding the best ways to direct departmental and institutional resources.

Designed for those higher education professionals whose focus is faculty services, student data, student services, and academic advising, this workshop will focus on ways in which data can be used to develop and implement strategies to enhance student success. Following a discussion of how student success is defined, workshop participants will learn what data—much of which they are already collecting—and data mining techniques can be integrated with action plans to create effective student success initiatives. The workshop will close with a discussion of determining what and how data can be used to plan strategically for continuous improvement of student success initiatives.

Workshop Leaders:

Karen Thurmond, Director of Academic Advising and Degree Planning Resources, University of Memphis

Glenn Munson, Associate Registrar, University of Memphis


What data do you currently collect about student success/experiences? How is that data used? Is it used at all?

What do you really want to know about students that are involved with your programs? How might you go about finding your answers?

The Campus Audit. This session will focus on the importance of understanding your campus and collecting detailed information about practices, strategies, and programs on campus. Institutions must audit their efforts in order to find value in what has been done, while also setting benchmarks for future efforts. In this session, participants will learn:

  • What should we look for on campus? 
  • How do we measure success? 
  • What data are important to collect? 
  • What do we do with all this information? 
  • How do we work toward a meaningful campus-wide plan for retention

Monitoring Student and Program Outcomes Progress
The capstone session to our conference will discuss the importance of monitoring student success and institutional progress. The ability of institutions to benchmark and continuously collect and review data is paramount to the success of any large-scale initiative. Issues include:

  • determining what data to collect 
  • how and when to collect information 
  • using data in a progressive manner understanding how data can change your plan
  • incorporating a continuous-improvement cycle as a model for institutional change