5 Steps to Improve Students' Retention Rates in Higher Education



According to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, of the 2.6 million students who entered college as first-time freshmen in fall 2019, 74% returned to college for the second year.

How to increase student retention is one of the biggest topics in higher education. It’s critical to understand why students choose to leave school, although it could be due to some academic difficulties most of them leave due to factors like: Cost, isolation, social difficulties, or unclear expectations.

Reasons to leave school among students are many and varied, however, it’s important to acknowledge these challenges. Schools can develop efficient and innovative programs to boost retention rates and help students at the same time.

You might be wondering, “how can the school accomplish this?”, well here you will find 5 strategies for improving retention rates:


1. Collect Data

Universities must collect data on program effectiveness, student achievement and resource allocation to address low student retention rates. Once collected, data can enhance student retention efforts year after year.  It’s important to identify, measure and track key performance metrics and a good way to do this is by implementing a learning analytics system such as EDLIGO.


2. Combine the strength of all resources

Student retention is a massive issue, it is necessary combine the power of faculty who first notice student absences with the financial aid officers able to implement solutions, and student affairs specialists who can put at-risk students in touch with available resources.

These initiatives must be followed and supported with appropriate technology. In that way they can be more effective and have a more comprehensive approach to student retention.


3. Implement an Academic Success Program

Programs support must be developed and implemented targeting high-risk students by directly addressing issues related to academic underperformance. Nowadays, the technologies became so advance so it became possible to combine advanced analytics and machine learning to get measurable and timely outcomes fast. AI can help to address academic underperformance and other education issues quickly and get data-based recommendations at different levels.


4. Create Retention Plans

It is essential to create retention strategies for every step of a student’s journey also schools must establish goals for student retention. If they don’t set goals will have a harder time measuring success and putting effective programs in place. Personalized learning paths and recommendations based on students’ needs and performance can definitely support the decision making processes related to retention plans.


5. Offer Online Courses

Online courses are associated with increased retention and graduation rates, they improve access to education for disadvantaged students. Offering digital courses improves student learning outcomes by helping students earn their degree faster.

To learn more about student retention rates challenges and how embracing the right technology such as EDLIDO helps, contact us.


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