Support Operation for Academic Retention (S.O.A.R.)
GOAL: To further interdepartmental coordination to enhance student retention and academic success.
- Maintain coordination of services provided to students
- Evaluation of student services provided by S.O.A.R.
- Regular and open communication between programs
- Provide sufficient staffing to accommodate program growth
Objective 1: Provide support for supervision of programs and services
- Hire an Associate Director to assist the Director of S.O.A.R.
- Hire an Assistant Director for each program
- Hire an assessment personnel
Objective 2: Expand current programs to accommodate increasing student needsStrategies:
- Evaluate student needs through survey of student feedback
- Statistical analysis of program outcomes
Programs for Academic Development and Retention (P.A.D.R)
Mission: Programs for Academic Development and Retention (PADR) provides students with opportunities for personal and academic skill development through coursework and individualized instruction. PADR empowers students through self discovery and awareness of specific problems that hinder academic success.
Goal: Improve retention by providing tools to promote academic excellence.
- 65% of PADR students pass the course, and achieve a 2.0 semester GPA.
- 85% completion rate for PADR students
- Develop a support program for PADR students to address issues beyond scholastic skills that endanger academic success
Objective 1: Improve success of PADR students
- Interact with college deans and advisors to develop relationships to assess needs of college-specific probation freshmen.
- Tailor individual PADR sections with curricula directed to college-specific participants, optional students, transfer students and students repeating the course.
- Develop better assessment strategies for understanding the PADR population and their specific needs.
Objective 1.2: Track performance of students after completing PADR requirements.Strategies:
- Gather data thru electronic survey, instructor follow-up and evaluation of graduation rates.
- Devise an intervention plan based on midterm grade reports for the semester immediately after PADR completion.
GOAL II: Enhance the educational experience for PADR students and instructors.
- All PADR students will complete the recommended Career Center assessments and attend advising.
- Update curriculum and materials on an annual basis.
- Retire the stigma associated with PADR as a probation/suspension program by changing the program name and marketing courses attractive to all TTU students.
- Every instructor will attend one training opportunity each semester.
Objective 2.1: Intensify the search for personal, academic and career identity in our students.
- Encourage student relationships with their instructors and academic advisors thru curriculum requirements.
- Cooperate with campus programs to get PADR students to the services needed.
- Require students to visit the Career Center for assessments and advising.
- Enlist peer/faculty or staff mentors for PADR students.
- Further incorporate leadership and self awareness material into the curriculum.
Objective 2.2 Develop new venues to assist all TTU undergraduate students desiring to improve their academic work
- Assess the student population academic needs through qualitative and quantitative methods
- Pilot additional courses marketed and offered to all students
Objective 2.3: Continually develop and modernize course curriculum.
- Create a more thorough semester identity summation tool to include a portfolio project.
- Continue development of course management systems such as Blackboard to improve delivery of course content.
- Remain up to date on current work in similar programs and new curriculum as it becomes available.
Objective 2.4: Improve instructor knowledge and teaching skills.
- Require each instructor to attend a seminar thru the TPDC regularly to improve on teaching quality.
- Encourage instructors to attend each other’s lectures to broaden ideas of course material delivery and create a sharing community.
- Conduct performance evaluations on an annual basis.
- Develop online instructor training and reference materials for professional development, enhanced communication between instructors, and a cohesive curriculum across all PADR sections.
- Provide ongoing individual support for instructors through individual and group meetings.
GOAL I: To assist with student retention and academic success, primarily through an effective, user-friendly peer tutoring and mentoring program.
- Regular provision of tutoring in all traditional (i.e. Math and Science) areas as well as additional areas of greatest demand (e.g. Statistics and Accounting)
- Maintaining availability of Biology lectures and computer access in our Learning Lab
- Promote awareness on campus of Learning Center services
- Regular provision of mentoring in general academic strategies
Objective 1.1: Increase the number of contacts/contact hours for traditional group tutoring
- Monitor student usage (contacts and contact hours) of these services
- Provide opportunities for student evaluation of services
Objective 1.2: Increase the usage of online tutoring.
- Hire distinct and competent staff to accommodate online tutoring needs.
- Assess needs of for the Texas Tech students of University College for online tutoring
- Explore the possibility of expanding online tutoring hours to meet the needs of University College
- Explore the possibility of creating and designating an isolated area for online tutoring
- Investigate the use of 2nd life as a tutoring resource
- Investigate the use of webcam to enhance online tutoring
Objective 1.3: Assess the need for onsite tutoring at remote campuses
- Identify the subject areas students at remote campuses need tutoring in
- Collaborate with University College in hiring tutors for their students at remote campuses
Objective 1.4: Reduce technical problems encountered with lecture viewing in computer lab
- Enlist aid of programmer and computer tech in every instance of computer malfunction
- Have backup headphones on hand when needed
- Maintain appropriate speed and availability of lecture videos
- Systematically upgrade technology when needed
Objective 1.5: Continue with departmental publicity efforts
- Continue to publish and distribute academic resources guides
- Utilize multimedia resources available
- Promotional items given out at Orientations, Outreaches, etc.
- Continue to distribute marketing and promotional material to various campus locations
GOAL II: To assist with student retention and academic success by providing individualized professional counseling tailored to student needs
- Provide professional counseling services for individual students
- Assist individual students with academic success assessments, skills, techniques and strategies
- Promote the Learning Center as a resource for student support and success
- Provide professional insight, skills and support for mentors, tutors, and faculty
Objective 2.1 Continue to provide individual counseling services by a Licensed Professional Counselor
- Provide an environment where privacy and student confidence are encouraged
- Maintain LPC licensure through allowing for professional enrichment opportunities through workshops, conferences, and college credit coursework both local and state wide
- Evaluate student feedback to improve or validate effectiveness
- Explore opportunities to meet the counseling needs of Distance Education students with the University College
Objective 2.2 Continue to promote and support the knowledge and skills of the counselor as a Learning Specialist
- Promote continuing education opportunities so that current best practices in learning intervention might be fostered
- Provide assessments, insight, expertise, skills and strategies to individual students in order to promote higher retention and enhance academic success
- Encourage faculty to refer students to the Learning Center and specifically for individual support through counseling
- Provide classroom presentations on study skills and strategies
- Evaluate and assess student evaluations in order to improve or validate effectiveness
- Explore opportunities to meet the learning needs of Distance Education students with the University College
Objective 2.3 Increase student awareness of counseling services provided through the Learning Center
- Provide classroom presentations on study skills and strategies
- Offer student retention and college success presentations to the various university organizations and programs
- Support faculty, primarily in the TSI, XL, and TTAP programs
- Participate in multi-media promotion of the Learning Center
- Participate in New Student Orientations and other outreach/ recruitment activities
Objective 2.4 Provide training and support for the Peer Mentors and support for the tutors of the Learning
- Assist with the training of the mentors on an on-going basis
- Monitor Mentor effectiveness through student reporting both verbally and through email follow up
- Provide instructional insight or support for the mentors and tutors in their work with students
Supplemental Instruction (S.I.)
GOAL: The Supplemental Instruction (SI) Program will provide effective peer-facilitated review sessions for historically difficult courses, offering a collaborative environment for students to assimilate course material with effective study skills.
- SI program meets or exceeds demand in freshman and sophomore level courses.
- Increase the number of SI Leaders proportionate to course additions.
- Increase the number of SI Supervisors proportionate to SI Leader additions.
- Fill vacant Unit Coordinator position
- Increase student use of SI by 100 students per year.
- Offer at least 2 SI Leader training sessions per year.
- Increase the number of computers available to SI Leaders proportionate to course additions.
Objective 1: Expand the SI Program.
- Determine courses that will benefit from the assistance of the SI program.
- Work with professors to find qualified SI Leaders.
- Hire an additional SI Supervisor per group of 7 SI Leaders.
- Obtain additional full-time staff and office space to accommodate an increase in SI Leaders.
Objective 2: Increase name recognition and awareness of the SI Program.
- Create and distribute an informational SI brochure to alert department chairs and faculty of the assistance that SI can provide to their students.
- Utilize the TechAnnounce and Facebook to increase contact with students.
- Redesign the SI website to be more accessible for students.
Objective 3: Improve facilitation techniques of SI Leaders.
- Implement semesterly training for SI Leaders.
- Offer additional training and development throughout each semester based upon SI Supervisor and peer observations.
- Hire additional SI Supervisors to allow for more observation of SI sessions.
Objective 4: Increase technology use.
- Provide at least 1 computer per group of 7 SI Leaders.
- Employ new technology to increase efficiency and effectiveness of SI sessions.
GOAL: Provide technological support and assistance and create ‘user-friendly’ computing environment to students and staff in Support Operations for Academic Retention, and use maximum advantages of technology to achieve reliable, efficient and excellent access.
- Implement supporting software
- Implement new server.
- Enhance web applications.
Objective 1: Deliver technology to Students.
- Maintain computing facilities provided to students.
- Develop and use new technologies.
- Improve internal applications.
Objective 2: Deliver the technological support and assistance to the units of SOAR.
- Upgrade to latest versions of existing software and integrate new technologies.
- Understand technological needs to enhance the applications.
- Upgrade websites.
- Continue to support and maintain internal applications, databases, workstations, servers, and communication networks.
Texas Success Initiative (T.S.I.)
GOAL: The Texas Success Initiative program will create a more effective learning environment in which students have the ability and time to gain the knowledge and skills to prepare to be successful in upper level reading, writing, and mathematics courses.
- TSI Completion rate of students from freshman to sophomore year to 70%
- Increase success rate of mathematics liable TSI students to 40%
- Increase the total success rate of TSI students to 75%
- Have at least two training and developmental opportunities available to TSI instructors and staff
- Provide two additional support staff to improve work environment and developmental course skills courses within five years.
- Create developmental Unit Coordinator for Reading and Writing position
- Provide more functional rooms by adding additional instructional resources.
Objective 1: Determine reasons that students from freshman to sophomore fail to complete the TSI program.
- Students will complete evaluations every semester on TSI requirements
- Make necessary changes to affect rules imposed by the Coordinating Board
Objective 2: Students complete their prescribed TSI courses successfully in a timely manner.
- Provide students with information on support services provided on campus each semester
- Report student passing scores for each student to advance to the next prescribed TSI course
Objective 3: Students complete mathematics liable courses successfully each semester
- Encourage students to use support services available to them
- Encourage students to meet with the instructor of TSI math
Objective 4: Increase the efficacy of the TSI curriculum in all areas
- Review curriculum for all areas annually
- Develop and deliver Reading, Writing, and Mathematics courses through Extended Studies
- Make use of Blackboard in the curriculum of the developmental areas
- Integrate Reading and Writing Curriculum
Objective 5: Improve instructor teaching techniques and knowledge
- Conduct performance evaluations on an annual basis
- Encourage instructors to review new literature
- Encourage instructors to have students complete the learning style inventory
- Encourage instructors to attend TLTC presentations
Objective 6: Acquire additional funding and office space to increase the TSI staff by two full time employees
- Hire a Reading and Writing Unit Coordinator
- Hire one additional staff member to aid the Unit Coordinators
Objective 7: Increase understanding of TSI program throughout campus
- Host information sessions on various entities across campus
- Create and distribute marketing and promotional material campus wide