Aston University

Student Attendance

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Aston University

University of the year 2020
The Situation

Aston University is a public research university with over 14,000 students in the West Midlands region of England, receiving the highest award in the UK Governments Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).

Challenge – Student visa sponsorship requirements and professional accreditation needs, combined with the research supporting the correlation between attendance and better student outcomes were key drivers in choosing SEAtS Early Alert System.

Solution – SEAtS Early Alert Solution combines attendance reporting with targeted student support with automated student communications for better outcomes.

Impact – Student attendance has increase 3% each academic year since the system was introduced. Visa compliance reporting requirements has gone from taking months to minutes, while professional accreditation is only one click away.

Overview

Aston introduced SEAtS in 2017. Attendance data has driven process improvements around space utilisation and timetabling, as well as delivering in each of the three key objectives: streamlining student visa compliance reporting, generating professional accreditation attendance data for Aston’s new medical school, and informing Student Retention strategies.

A big win for Aston is the powerful Early Alert System which provides a clear picture of student engagement with automated communications to streamline student outreach for better outcomes.

Why Aston chose SEAtS

Market Share – SEAtS is one of the leading Student Attendance Solutions in the UK. 70% of universities in London use SEAtS to capture student attendance. Partnering with a proven solution was important to Aston choosing SEAtS.

Access to current users – SEATS facilitated contact with key clients without conditions. Aston felt it was important to move beyond the sales pitch and engage in frank discussions with current users about what the solution was like to use day to day.

Flexibility – From speaking to current users of SEAtS, Aston could see how flexible the solution was. This included the numerous hardware options for different teaching spaces, custom dashboards and custom reporting capabilities. This meant that Aston could do things their way, rather then fit their internal processes into rigid systems.

Integration – It was important that SEAtS could ntegrate with Aston University’s existing campus solutions including SITS (Student Management System) and CELCAT (Timetable Solution).

Microsoft Integration facilitates early adoption

The biggest surprise was how quickly students adopted SEAtS attendance monitoring. We expected some push-back but instead, we discovered that not only were students competitive about maintaining a good attendance record but they appreciated that we cared whether they attended or not; that we proactively asked them if they were OK if they didn’t turn up for class.

Results

Aston University can now react faster to student needs and promt early interventions with at-risk students.

Aston achieved an 87% adoption rate in the first 2 weeks. This showed that students cared about their attendance record, and that they were keen to measure their own success.

Aston are coming into their fourth year of using SEATS Software, with plans to expand the use of the SEAtS suite of features. SEAtS data has streamlined internal processes, increased productivity and nurtured student wellness using reliable attendance data.