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Intervention counseling

I frequently make myself available for students to discuss their classes and grades. I find the students who usually take advantage of this are the ones that least need guidance. How do we get the ones most in need of guidance and academic conseling to take advantage of the opportunites to do so?

Joe, I’ll be interested in seeing the responses from other participants. Students are constantly asking [aloud or silently] “what’s in it for me”. When they don’t perceive a reason to review their performance, that’s usually a sign that they don’t have a clear vision of their future in the field and how the information in the classroom will benefit them.

We do make it mandatory for the instructor to fill out an interim report if the student is doing less than C minus work and then discuss the report with the student. I think that this is good for the student to have communication with the instructor if their grades are poor. It's up to the student then to make the changes to strive for a better grade.

A student should never have to guess how they are doing in any class. Is the interim report completed at the mid-point of the academic period? If so, does this give the student adequate time to make the appropriate adjustments? While I agree, Steve, that the student is ultimately responsible for his classroom performance [grade], it is in everyone's interest to assure that the student has all the tools he/she needs to succeed.

I have found that meeting with the students one-on-one to go over their classroom performance makes them feel important, and also allows them to open up to me with any concerns they may have. I show them their grades to date and "challenge" them to reach for the next higher grade level. I ask if there is anything I can do to assist them in reaching this "new" goal. Then, it is important to follow up with them and to congratulate them if/when they do successfully apply themselves on the next graded area.

Great practice, Ronald. How often do you meet with your students? How many do you have?

I currently have around 120 students, but make it a practice to talk to them between classes, also mingling with them at lunch-time, and also make myself available if a student needs tutoring. I use the principles of "motivation" and "communication" as my two main tools as an instructor. I also set aside the last day of the quarter before finals to sit down with each student and go over their grades and attendance to date while informing them of what they would need on the final exam to achieve whatever grade they had set as their goal for the quarter. I find the students really appreciate this and also respond well to my "motivational" talk to get them to strive for higher goals.

I really appreciate your examples and I will definetly use these ideas in the classroom.

Which one will be your first? When do you think you will implement it?

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