UNDERSTANDING STUDENTS' AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS' NEEDS, CATEGORY THREE
3P1. How do you identify the changing needs of your student groups? How do you analyze and select a course of action regarding these needs?
SFCC identifies and responds to changing student needs through qualitative and quantitative data received from course evaluations, program reviews, outcomes assessment, program and service advisory committees, placement follow-up of career and technical program completers, and faculty and staff contact with employers and transfer institutions. These processes often involve specific programs, services, departments and/or units with specific analysis and response mechanisms initiated by the employee who is responsible.
Analysis of student need and priorities for improvement begins with the Noel-Levitz® Student Satisfaction Inventory (SSI) survey. The SSI is a nationally normed survey designed to help institutions measure student expectation and satisfaction levels with educational programs and services.
The Institutional Planning and CQI Office administers the SSI every fall to a representative sample of 400 students and plans to increase that number to 525. The sample is stratified for day and evening students, on- and off-campus students, and transfer, career and technical students. The SSI asks students to rank their perceived importance and satisfaction on 40 items (with up to 10 institutional items), on a seven-point Likert scale. The comprehensive report indicates the gaps between satisfaction and importance and compares the results with national means.
The ELT and faculty and staff in each unit, use the results of the SSI to identify areas in which improvements are needed. Decisions are based on analysis of those items with the greatest gaps and those items for which the SFCC gaps are greater than the national means.
Another identification tool is the Noel-Levitz® College Student Inventory (CSI), which has been administered to first-time freshmen since fall 2000. This assessment asks students to report anticipated issues regarding financial support, family support, academics, goal setting, etc., and to rate their receptivity for help in those areas. This tool is especially useful for students utilizing the Advising and Resource Center (ARC) located in Student Services. ARC counselors can use a student’s CSI to determine whether or not the student is at risk for dropping out and then implement preventative steps to keep the student in college.
Both formal and informal processes support these relationships. For example, due to opportunities identified by students, primarily through the SSI, the college has revised its new student enrollment process to pair new students (and in many cases parents, spouses, families and other advocates) with trained and skilled core advisers for one-on-one, individualized academic counseling and advising.
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