ERIC Number: ED381208
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Postcards for Student Success.
Budig, Jeanne E.
Aware of the high correlation between class attendance and academic success, Vincennes University (VU) in Indiana implemented a "blue card" system to improve class attendance. The first week of class, students are asked to sign a blue card verifying their local address and allowing the release of academic information. Instructors begin class by discussing the importance of attendance and explaining that the tear-off portions of the blue cards will be used to notify students that the instructor is concerned about their absences. When students begin to miss class, postcards are sent to the student's local and permanent addresses. The first card indicates concern over non-attendance, the second is more strongly worded, and the third informs the student that he/she has been dropped for non-attendance and has received a grade of W or WF. The cost of the program is approximately $465 per year. Parents and academic advisors unanimously support the program, and students unanimously dislike it. Data collected during the 5 years of program operation indicate the following: (1) overall card usage increased each fall semester from 5,529 (#1 cards) in 1990 to 6,230 in fall 1994; (2) campuswide, about 20% of the students receive #1 cards, with students in academic transfer courses more likely to receive these warnings than occupational students (22% vs 15% in 1994); (3) card usage was highest in Humanities and Social Sciences courses, and lowest in Health Occupations courses; (4) about half of the students who receive #1 cards receive #2 cards; (5) the use of the "blue card system" enhanced student success and reduced the proportion of D and F grades, particularly for students in developmental courses and early morning courses. (Nine data tables and three graphs are included.) (KP)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Student Attendance Improvement Program IA
Note: Paper presented at a forum of the Indiana Association of Institutional Research (West Lafayette, IN, March 20-21, 1995).