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Student Retention

GBC Early Alert System

Faculty Information


The Early Alert System (EAS) allows faculty to quickly alert the Student Support & Retention Office about any student who is at-risk (has poor academic performance or shows potential for failing/dropping out of GBC.) A faculty member submits an alert through My GBC Self-Service and it is directly sent to the Student Support & Retention Office. The student is then contacted, receives one-on-one coaching, and when necessary, is directed to appropriate support services. The goal of EAS is to identify at-risk students early in the semester, intervene, and help them self-regulate their own academic success.

As a faculty member, you are often the first to recognize a student who is at risk. That is why it is so important to have faculty involvement in the Early Alert System.

Who is an at-risk student?

An at-risk student is in danger of failing a course or dropping out of college. Some of the characteristics of at-risk students are:

  • Poor academic performance (poorly prepared assignments, low test grades, lack of participation in class, etc.)
  • Lack of basic study skills
  • Excessive absences (particularly if the student does not drop the course)
  • Excessive tardiness
  • Isolation or depression
  • Behavioral issues or academic dishonesty

*This doesn't mean you need to look for all of these characteristics, and most likely the majority of early alerts you submit as an instructor will focus on poor academic performance and attendance issues. However, these characteristics often contribute to the whole of an at-risk student, and you are encouraged to submit an alert for any of the above.

Factors that contribute to a student being at higher risk include: being a first generation student, experiencing a delay between high school and college, being a single parent, experiencing socioeconomic stressors, dealing with a disability, or experiencing stress or life crisis.

When to submit an early alert

You may submit an early alert at any time during the semester. However, research shows that the first six to eight weeks are the most crucial for students to build a foundation for success. Simply said, the earlier the better.

You may be prompted by staff members at certain times during the semester to submit specific early alerts, such as early in the semester for students who are not attending class but have not dropped the course, or for students below a certain grade average at midterm. Again, you may submit an alert at any time during the semester as you see fit.

*When sending alerts for students that have never attended class or logged in to an online course, we will try our best to contact students but may be unsuccessful. One alert is sufficient for a student who has never attended or never logged in to an online course. Please consider refraining from sending multiple alerts for students who have never participated in the course as it keeps our staff from efficiently processing alerts for other students.

How to submit an early alert

Submitting an early alert is accomplished through MyGBC Self-Service (Peoplesoft). Once you have logged in and accessed your "Faculty Center," the following steps are taken.

  1. Locate the class in which the student you want to submit an alert for is enrolled
  2. Click on the "Class Roster" icon
  3. Locate the student and click on the "Early Alert" icon [ !], located to the left of the student ID
  4. An Early Alert page will display; click the box next to the appropriate code for the alert you are submitting
  5. Add comments if necessary in the comment box; this might include any pertinent information to clarify the alert, special requests, or suggested referrals
  6. Click "Send Alert"

*You can also find this information in the visual PDF file "Faculty Center Handout" located on your MyGBC Self-Service homepage.

Communication after an alert is submitted

The Student Support & Retention Office will make every effort to communicate with you about the status of submitted alerts. You should receive an email notification through your GBC email account that your alert has been received and assigned to appropriate personnel. This is a manual process, so you will not receive immediate notification; however, if you do not receive email notification within three days of submitting an alert, please call the Retention Coordinator.

If you would like to know about the outcomes for a student you submitted an alert for, you may request follow-up information. To request follow-up information, reply to the early alert notification email, responding to the prompts about your preferred level and methods of communication, or contact the Retention Coordinator directly. To avoid overloading you with information, you will not receive follow-up information about students unless you indicate that you would like to receive follow up information; this way you can control the scope of feedback you receive. You may occasionally be contacted about a student's progress for reporting and research purposes.


Special notes for early alerts regarding student behavior and academic dishonesty

You may want to send an early alert about academic dishonesty or behavioral problems that are not immediately threatening. If an alert is sent in regarding behavioral problems or academic dishonesty, the information will be forwarded to an Administrative Officer for review, and you will be notified of the procedures to follow. Please note, the student will not immediately be contacted unless you directly contact the Administrative Officer and request immediate action.


Thank you...

Your time and resources are valuable, and any effort you can make to help us best help your students is appreciated. If you have any questions or concerns about the EAS or other retention related issues, or if you need assistance submitting an early alert, please contact the Retention Coordinator (753-2255).


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