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IAM Faculty Handbook

Improving Student Performance

We encourage faculty to take an aggressive, "Pro–Active" attitude toward student performance and retention. Since we have made improvement in student’s grades and attendance an objective for the Interactive Arts and Media classes we’ve received very positive results, but we can do better!

These are the strategies that seemed to work:

  • Early Identification and Intervention
  • Interactive Arts and Media Tutoring Program
  • CIT Workshops
  • Utilize Academic Advising
  • Clear Objectives and Expectations
  • Follow-Up and Documentation

Early Identification and Intervention

We ask the faculty to try to identify those students who are having difficulty during the first few weeks of class. The instructor should consult with these students privately and suggest a course of action to help them successfully complete the course. Suggestions should include the Interactive Arts and Media Tutoring program, the Writing Center, the Math-Tutoring Center, and Academic Advising. Also faculty should stress the importance of attendance and speak with students who are missing too many classes. This seems to become a much greater issue after midterms, so the faculty must be aware of this and really work on student retention for the second half of the semester. (Many of the failing grades issued are given to students who simply stop attending class and don’t withdraw.)

Interactive Arts and Media Tutoring Program

Tutors will be available to help students with homework, software and hardware problems. Students should be encouraged to visit the tutors if they are having problems in class. As an incentive bonus, students who see the tutors could be given extra credit. Tutors place copies of tutor forms in the appropriate faculty mailboxes if the students identify their instructors.

College Advising Center

Rachel Royle, IAM Advisor 312-369-7048

As in past years, Academic Advising will be working closely with us. Instructors should call with the name of any at-risk student. They will follow up, contact the student and ask them to come in for counseling.

If you would like, an advisor will come to your class to give a brief talk on good study habits and effective learning strategies.

Clearly Stated Objective and Expectations

As suggested in the Interactive Arts and Media faculty handbook, we ask instructors to be very precise in stating expected student outcomes and provide meaningful feedback when returning student assignments and tests. Faculty should keep students informed as to their status in the class by returning assignments in a timely manner, written and verbal comments, discussing grades several times during the semester, etc. All classroom policies and procedures should be stated verbally and contained in the syllabus.

Follow–up and Documentation

Some students will require that one–step extra. Faculty is encouraged to keep after the at–risk students. The instructors should follow–up with students they have spoken with. Have the students done what was suggested? What else can the instructor and student do that will help, etc. Instructors should document their efforts and consult their coordinator or department chair for the rest if there is a serious or continuing problem.