Redesigning the Student Intake and Information Provision Processes at a Large Comprehensive Community College
Many community college students are overwhelmed by the number and complexity of choices they face in navigating college, leading to suboptimal decisions that can waste their time and money or that can divert them from a promising academic or career path. This case study describes how a large, suburban community college planned and implemented a relatively low-cost redesign of its student intake and information provision processes in an attempt to reduce confusion and increase student success. Preliminary results suggest that the redesign improved the student experience, increasing the proportion of students who found the college’s orientation to be very helpful and improving their performance on self-advising tasks. The concluding section of this paper discusses additional possibilities for low-cost improvements to help students navigate college, including simplifying program and transfer structures, more explicitly teaching students how to self-advise, and leveraging online e-advising tools to make advisors’ work more in-depth, effective, and efficient.
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