Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Colleges: How Can You Update the Freshman Experience?

Did you know? College students are most likely to dropout during their first year.  

In fact, Educationse.com reports that, “Approximately 35% of students who enter college will drop out during the first year.” As a result, universities are faced with a difficult task – to provide support services that help first-year students successfully transition to college life.

Text message communication is one method universities can use to connect with their students. 

SendTree allows universities and teachers to send one group text message to all of their students. By investing in a technology that directly engages students on their mobile phones, universities can provide different types of support for their students.

Text Important News to Students: 

  • Deadline reminders - scheduling dates, final withdrawal, advising appointments, etc.
  • Weather alerts - winter advisories or tornado warnings
  • Campus events - Social, cultural, and educational campus-wide activities
  • Acceptance notifications - use SendTree to notify students via email and text of their acceptance
  • Support Services – notify students of the free services available to them like counseling and tutoring sessions (an efficient way to target first year students)  

Lecturers, take part in this rapport too

One of the biggest differences between high school and college is the study habits. College students are expected to do much of their studying independently. Professors can use group text to promote learning outside of the classroom.

Text has successfully been used abroad to motivate students. An article by Jayde Cahir, Elaine Huber, Boris Handal, Justin Dutch and Mark Nixon titled, Using text messaging to support student transition to university study, found that:

In Japan, students studying English at university were sent, three times a day, new vocabulary and the use of each word in multiple contexts. These “mini-lessons”…indicated a constructive learning outcome as 93% responded positively when asked if it was a valuable teaching method and 89% wished to continue learning via the mobile phone (Thornton & Houser 2004).

SendTree = Seamless Integration

A group text messaging service, like SendTree, is a simple, inexpensive way to share important news with students. Introducing group text to students is easy because text is already a part of their everyday lives. The Pew Research Internet Project shows that young adults between the ages 18 and 24 send and receive more texts than any other age group. So, why not get started today? Get ahead of the curve and update your university with SendTree.  

Works Cited:
Thornton, P. & Houser, C. 2004, ‘Using mobile phones in education’, The 2nd IEEE International Workshop on 
          Wireless and Mobile Technologies in Education (WMTE’04), IEEE Computer Society, Vaxjo, Sweden.

Cahir, Jayde, Elaine Huber, Boris Handal, Justin Dutch, and Mark Nixon. "Using Text Messaging to Support 
          Student Transition to University Study." Http://journals.sfu.ca/. Study-MATE, 1 Nov. 2012. Web.

Smith, Aaron. "Americans and Text Messaging." Pew Research Centers Internet American Life Project RSS
          Pew Research, 19 Sept. 2011. Web. 31 Aug. 2014.

"Percent of First Year College Dropout Students: The Reasons Students Drop Out." Percent of First Year 
          College Dropout Students: The Reasons Students Drop Out. Educationse, n.d. Web. 31 Aug. 2014.

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