Starfish Retention Solutions Introduces Starfish 3, the Latest Release of the Enterprise Student Success and Retention Platform

Ann McClure's picture
Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Starfish Retention Solutions

Arlington, VA — Starfish Retention Solutions, Inc., a leading provider of student success systems, today announced the availability of Starfish® 3, an enterprise student success and retention platform. This is the latest release of the company’s software platform that was recognized in December 2012 by University Business as a Readers’ Choice Award Winner. For the last 12 months, the company has collaborated with its client community of more than 150 institutions to develop the new features and functionality that are made available in Starfish 3.

“Montgomery College has recently adopted the Starfish system. With the release of Starfish 3, the company has expanded not only on the platform’s ability to support the growing scope of student success and retention programs on today’s campuses but also on the platform’s ability to support the specific needs of academic counselors and advisors,” said Jamin Bartolomeo, associate dean for student services at Montgomery College in Maryland. “For example, we are very excited to begin using the SpeedNotes feature in Starfish 3, which will allow our counselors and advisors to take more comprehensive notes more efficiently. The new feature will also enable the college to understand all of the items that are being completed in an advising or counseling session and not just the general reason for the appointment. This data will be invaluable in our efforts to improve our advising and counseling processes.”

The release of Starfish 3 includes new functionality that expands on the company’s commitment to offer solutions that enable the full campus community to help students complete their academic goals. Specifically, the enhancements enable:

Optimized Academic Advising. Starfish 3 includes innovative functionality to support the daily activities of academic advisors and advising centers. Features include SpeedNotes to simplify the note-taking process while making this important task more measurable by the institution. The system also includes improved student action plans through plan templates, the ability to support file attachments and virus scanning, advanced filtering and reporting, and kiosk/waiting room management.

Intelligent System Integrations. Starfish 3 builds on the company’s history of enabling institutions to leverage the momentum behind their existing third-party systems by reusing both the data generated by the systems and the user community’s training. Starfish 3 has built-in integrations with learning management systems, including single login and data mining of grades, login activity, and participation. New platforms supported with this release include Desire2Learn, Canvas, and Sakai. Starfish 3 also supports comprehensive integrations with Banner, PeopleSoft, and Colleague student information systems. In addition, the platform enables online advising and tutoring with its first ever integration with a Web conferencing and chat system, Blackboard Collaborate. Last, the platform extends its rich attendance tracking and flagging capabilities by making use of data from student response systems (also known as Clickers).

Enterprise Usability and Supportability. As a growing number of institutions view their student success and retention programs from a more global, institution-wide perspective, those institutions are seeking solutions that securely integrate with other campus systems while facilitating thorough testing and solid operations. As an enterprise solution, Starfish 3 responds to the needs of IT by offering enhanced functionality to support the scalability, usability, and testability of the platform within the institution’s IT environment.

Accessible with a single login from an institution’s student information system, portal system, or learning management system (e.g., Blackboard, WebCT, ANGEL, Moodle, Desire2Learn, Canvas), Starfish 3 is a collection of two software systems. Starfish EARLY ALERT™ is an early warning and student tracking system that makes it possible for instructors, advisors, and academic staff to identify at-risk students in real time. The system includes advanced early warning analytics agents that process student success information, including instructor perception data, student self-assessment data, learning management system data, and student information system data. Starfish CONNECT™, an education support networking and case management system, helps students access a personalized contact list of instructors, advisors, tutors, and counselors who are dedicated to helping them succeed. The system also provides informative academic plans to help keep students on track. Together, the systems generate valuable performance and resource utilization data for the institution, which helps optimize future service offerings.

“Starfish Retention Solutions is committed to continually evolving the solutions that we make available to meet the needs of our client community today as well as the opportunities of the future,” said David Yaskin, founder and CEO of Starfish Retention Solutions. “We are grateful to our client community for their partnership over the last year as we conceived, developed, and tested the components of this latest release. We look forward to measuring the impact that Starfish 3 makes on our clients’ ability to support their students to achieve successful outcomes.” About Starfish Retention Solutions

Starfish Retention Solutions is a leading provider of student success systems. The company offers a collection of software solutions that harness the power of the campus community in order to engage, motivate, and graduate more students—securing valuable tuition revenue through student retention. Specifically, the solutions help institutions identify at-risk students in real time, based on their daily coursework performance and faculty concerns, and then connect them to the resources designed to help (e.g., advising or tutoring), all while assessing which services and interventions are working. For more information, please call 703.260.1186 or visit www.starfishsolutions.com.