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Academic Alerts

Please note that our academic alert system is undergoing changes for the Summer/Fall 2024 as the university transitions to Vol Connect.

The academic alert system serves as a proactive outreach initiative aimed at identifying and supporting undergraduate scholars who are encountering academic challenges inside the classroom, such as low grades on tests/quizzes, missed assignment, inconsistent attendance, etc.  Instructional faculty submit academic alerts through the university’s campus-wide Vol Connect system and those alerts are then viewable by academic coaches, academic advisors, and scholars. The information provided in the alerts enable the academic coaches in the Academic Success Center to connect with scholars, create a plan for success, and refer them to other appropriate campus resources. Research shows that early intervention has a lasting impact on scholar performance (Lizzio & Wilson, 2013).  Academic alerts can be submitted in the Vol Connect system in one of two ways: via Progress Report Campaigns which are initiated by the Academic Success Center or through Ad Hoc Alerts which are initiated by instructional faculty.  Please review the information below for additional details.

Fall 2024 Campaign Dates to Be Added Soon


What Faculty Can Do

You can do a great deal to make the University of Tennessee a better institution by providing feedback on scholar engagement and performances early in the term. There are several ways you can do this:

Personal Contact Request to meet with scholars who are missing class, not completing homework or doing poorly on assignments, quizzes and exams.
Academic Alert Request Participate in once a semester requests for feedback on student progress. Student feedback provided by faculty through Vol Connect is available to the scholars assigned Academic Coach and the scholars for action.
Refer to Academic Coach Encourage scholars to make an appointment with their academic coach in the Academic Success Center.
Email Academic Success Center Email our office anytime with questions about the process or Vol Connect at academicsuccess@utk.edu.

Progress Report Campaigns involve a targeted request to instructional faculty to access the progress of first-year scholars enrolled in specific courses.  These alerts are supported by the students’ assigned academic coach who will work with them to connect them with the appropriate resource based on their particular needs. This may be academic coaching, the Vol Study Center, the Writing Center, or one of the many other resources around campus. The scholar will be notified when the alert is submitted with the course name and alert reason.

It is important to note that not all instructional faculty will receive an invitation to a Progress Report Campaign as these campaigns generally focus support on courses which have a high number of first-time scholars who are learning to navigate the institution.  Progress Report Campaign requests occur around the fifth week of the semester.

If you are an instructor who wishes to notify our office of a scholar’s progress and you are not included in a Progress Report Campaign or a scholar in your course is not included in a campaign that you have received, please see the section below about ad hoc alerts. 

Steps for submitting Progress Report Campaign Feedback:

  1. Login to Vol Connect or click on the link from the email you received from the Academic Success Center.
  2. From the Faculty App home page, click on the drop-down area in the “available progress report campaigns” box near the top of the page and then select the report for the course(s) you teach.
  3. A list of select scholars in your course will populate.
    • Note: The list may not include all of the scholars enrolled in your course depending on the nature of the campaign.
  4. Select the alert reason or reasons.
  5. Please provide additional comments so our team can best support your scholar. (Comments may include current grade in the class, last date of attendance, grade earned on a recent test or project, etc.)
  6. Once the feedback is complete, select “Ready for Submission” and then “Create Alerts” to officially submit.
    • Note: Student names outlined in orange do not have an officially created alert. Student names become grayed out once the alert for a given student has been submitted. It is possible to submit feedback for some of your students and not all if you begin the process and need to return later or only need to submit academic alerts for a portion of your students.

Ad hoc alerts can be submitted by any instructional faculty to inform the Academic Success Center of a scholar who is experiencing challenges in their course.  These submissions are reviewed regularly by ASC staff and scholars will be connected to the appropriate resource based on their particular needs. This may be academic coaching, Vol Study Center, the Writing Center, or one of the many other resources around campus. The scholar will be notified when the alert is submitted with the course name and alert reason.

Steps for submitting Ad Hoc Alerts:

  1. Login to Vol Connect
  2. From the Faculty App home page, see the “Ad Hoc Alert” in the box to the far right
  3. You will be asked to indicate if you are creating the alert for yourself or for someone else and to identify the student with their Student ID (000 number) or NetID.
  4. Select the class
  5. Select the alert reason or reasons
  6. Please provide additional comments so our team can best support your scholar (Comments may include current grade in the class, last date of attendance, grade earned on a recent test or project, etc.)
  7. Submit

 

Submitted alerts are automatically assigned to the students’ assigned academic coach. (If the student is in University Honors or a Veteran student, the alert will be assigned to their Honors Coach or Veteran Coach.) If the student does not have an assigned academic coach, the alert will be assigned to an appropriate coach by the Academic Success Center.

Academic, Honors, and Veteran coaches follow a case management model and manage the support for students based on the information provided in the academic alert. Through proactive outreach, such as phone calls and emails, coaches work to engage with the student and connect them with the appropriate support and resources on campus. This may be academic coaching, Vol Study Center, the Writing Center, or one of the many other resources around campus.

Once the student and coach address the concern in the alert, the coach will close the alert which triggers an automated notification to the alert issuer. Closing an alert does not necessarily mean the concern has been fully resolved, but indicates that steps are being taken related to the concerns. The coach and scholar are often still working together even after the alert has been closed.

If an instructor has continued concerns about a scholar after an alert has been submitted or closed, please contact the Academic Success Center at academicsuccess@utk.edu.

 

New for 2024, instructors can use Progress Report Campaigns and/or ad hoc alerts to share positive feedback directly to the student!  This is called a “recognition” alert and is a great way to let a student know that you see their excellent work or growth in your course.  An academic coach will not be notified of any recognition alerts, but the student will receive a notification and the report will be logged into the Vol Connect system for staff with appropriate access to view.

 

The Faculty and Staff Referral to Resources form is also available. This referral form can be filled out at any point in the semester by faculty or staff and can be completed for any student who could use additional assistance, even those who are performing well academically. Please note that an ASC staff member will reach out to the referred student to recommend resources once this form is submitted. If you have questions about this form, please contact Jenny Boucher, Assistant Director of Academic Interventions at jludwig2@utk.edu.
Student success, persistence and graduation are vitally important to the campus. Research on first-year scholar retention supports early identification. intervention programs as high impact activities that positively affect student success.

Contact

If you have any questions regarding the administration of this program, please email Jenny Boucher, Assistant Director of Academic Interventions at jludwig2@utk.edu.