Starfish aims to identify “at-risk” situations as quickly as possible and promptly direct students to the support services that can help them succeed. This process is accessible through MyUT. Simply click on the “Students” tab and then click on “Student Records.” Starfish provides faculty, academic advisors, tutors, and program directors with a convenient way to follow and support students. Starfish can also be accessed through Canvas.
Faculty can raise “referrals” for students who need additional support from the writing center, career center, academic performance center, etc., “flags” when a concerning pattern of behavior is observed (i.e. in danger of failure, inappropriate behavior, poor attendance, etc.) or “kudos” when students are deserving of compliments (i.e. great test score, good participation, helpful comments in class, etc.). Referrals, flags, and kudos are conveyed to the student through email, and their academic advisor is aware of them as well, allowing advisors and other support services to intervene. Certain students might have academic performance or attendance issues, while others may be showing signs of emotional distress. Starfish gives us an efficient way to communicate those concerns to the people who can help, while respecting FERPA and our institution’s policies on the privacy of student information.
Increased communication between instructors and support staff is a proven strategy for increasing student success and retention. The partnership and participation of all campus faculty and staff will ensure that each student enrolled at our institution has the best possible chance to succeed.