Athens State University
|<< last story|||||next story >>|
Students Enthusiastically Adopt Smarthinking to Help Improve Their Writing
Online Writing Lab usage results in increased pass rates.
As Alabama’s oldest institution of higher learning, Athens State University offers college juniors and seniors the opportunity to earn a baccalaureate degree in 30 disciplines. With its emphasis on providing a friendly, welcoming learning environment, Athens State University is committed to providing a comprehensive education leading to a baccalaureate degree.Download PDF
Athens State University has provided an affordable, quality education for over 180 years to students in Alabama. Approximately 3,500 students are enrolled at Athens State in 2011. The University has a large distance learning population which is still growing—96% of students take at least one course online while 51% take all their courses online. Online courses represent more than half of the total course offerings at Athens State. The University recognized the need to offer student support services online. After thoroughly researching online tutoring services, Athens State University turned to Smarthinking to provide individualized, one-to-one, online student academic support.
Athens State began offering Smarthinking’s online tutoring service in 2008. By 2009, all students were able to access Smarthinking’s online tutoring support in math, science, business and writing up to 24 hours a day/7 days a week. Using Smarthinking’s unique reporting functions, Athens State monitors how students are using Smarthinking—in what areas and by how many sessions. Statistics show that students have strongly adopted Smarthinking as an academic support service.
Reports also show that students are using Smarthinking’s Online Writing Lab most frequently. The Online Writing Lab allows students to submit drafts of their writing and receive individualized feedback and critique generally within 24 hours.
While a number of professors have encouraged their students to use the Smarthinking’s Online Writing Lab, two professors required students to use Smarthinking in two Summer 2011 sections of Organizational Communications, a 300-level business course. A comparison of the student pass rates for that course from the spring session where students were not required to use Smarthinking with the summer session where they were required to use Smarthinking was revealing. Student pass rates jumped from 90% to 96% in one section where students were required to use Smarthinking, and from 85% to 88% in the second section. The increases in pass rates clearly demonstrate the effectiveness of Smarthinking.
"In an effort to offer quality online degree programs to our distance learners, we required an online tutoring solution that offered an equivalent to traditional tutoring services. Our implementation of Smarthinking in 2008 was met with tremendous success, and we’ve exceeded all expectations ever since."
Steve Clark, Associate Director, Academic Support & Instructional Systems
Learn more about Smarthinking's Online Writing Lab. More
View how Smarthinking can assist all students. More