Not all students learn the same way. Each student has a particular combination of learning styles and experiences when it comes to higher education. Read this case study to learn how Somerset Community College used SmarterMeasure to help understand their students, instill confidence, and help their students create academic success.
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Somerset Community College (SCC) prides itself on helping people perform to the best of their abilities while making higher education an option for all. SCC serves a diverse group of both in-person and online students. Many of their learners come from rural areas and lower socioeconomic backgrounds. They also cater to a wide age range of students — from dual-enrolled high schoolers, to post-high school undergraduates, to 50-year-olds making a career change, to 80-year-olds looking to further their education.
In the process of creating equal opportunity education, the institution realized that some students needed more academic assistance and affirmation to excel than others. It became apparent that self-awareness and confidence-building needed to be a top priority for SCC to instill within their students to help them succeed. The college needed a way to identify areas of life and academics so that they could best assist their students to propel their educational journey.
To help set their students up for success, Somerset Community College chose SmarterServices’ SmarterMeasure Learning Readiness Indicator to provide a holistic approach to evaluating their students’ learner readiness.
Once implemented, they used SmarterMeasure to evaluate their first-time online students’ strengths and weaknesses. They measured students’ life factors, individual attributes, learning styles, technical competency, technical knowledge, on-screen readiness rate/recall, typing speed/accuracy, and LMS competency through SmarterMeasure. After completing the assessment, success coaches from the institution reviewed the results with the students and offered suggestions, resources, and information on how students could improve their area(s) of weakness while creating greater self-confidence in their abilities during their courses.
As both students and educators found value in the SmarterMeasure Learning Readiness Indicator, SCC made it a requirement for all first-year students to partake in.
Within their FYE course, they require students to have one-on-one coaching to set goals based on their SmarterMeasure results. SCC has also built resources that they refer students to and provide weekly informational sessions on topics such as time management skills, study skills, mental health, stress management, and more for their students.
Before implementing SmarterMeasure, Somerset Community College used placement testing to determine the learner readiness of their students. However, they had no way of measuring their students’ skills beyond their academic ability. Now with SmarterMeasure, SCC can measure their students’ non-cognitive skills including life factors, individual attributes, and learning styles — all while compiling it into one easy-to-understand assessment.
For their educators and academic advisors, SmarterMeasure serves as an objective tool that allows them to review areas of improvement with their students, build up confidence, and help them succeed. Faculty members are now able to offer tips and guidance to help students improve based on their SmarterMeasure results. It also allows the staff to better understand how to help their students overcome technology challenges in the classroom by evaluating the student’s current tech availability and skill level.
Since implementing SmarterMeasure in 2021, SCC has seen a 25.1% increase in persistence. Overall, SCC is looking forward to continuing to increase student success and student confidence throughout their institution with the help of using the SmarterMeasure Learning Readiness Indicator.
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