ARLINGTON, VA (October 15, 2014) — Starfish Retention Solutions, Inc., a leading student success company, today announced the availability of Starfish 5, the latest release of the Starfish® Enterprise Success Platform™.

In response to mounting accountability demands, institutions are seeking innovative ways to scale their student success and retention efforts for all their students. As a result, institutions are deploying technology-enhanced strategies to integrate campus departments and data in order to learn more about their students’ complex challenges and keep everyone on the same page, and to measure their institutional efforts.

For the past seven years, the Starfish platform has been an integral part of the student retention and completion efforts at more than 240 institutions. The latest release, Starfish 5, represents the next generation of student success technology, and offers innovative tools that can help connect a wide range of staff with the students who need their help.

Support for Holistic Advising. A holistic advising approach begins with data but relies on action. Starfish 5 includes new ways for advisors and other staff to manage and prioritize the flow of information, organize students into dynamic cohorts, automate simple tasks and focus high-touch activities where they will make the most impact. For additional student services issues, Starfish 5 lets advisors identify and notify the right colleagues to ensure timely action. A streamlined user interface with simpler navigation means campus personnel spend less time training and more time helping students.

Focus on Students, Not Systems. The Starfish platform has always created a complete and continuous picture of every student in order to reveal concerns as soon as they occur. With Starfish 5, students can directly request help through new student dashboards, providing a powerful new data point for a variety of departments. Starfish 5 deepens existing integrations with Canvas, Brightspace by D2L, Moodle and Blackboard to more easily identify students’ academic challenges. The release also allows institutions to build a custom algorithm that determines each student’s Success Score, allowing advisors and other student support staff to quickly determine which students are excelling and which are at risk.

“At Seattle, our approach to advising is student-centric,” said Josh Krawczyk, director of university retention initiatives at Seattle University. “The ‘Raise Your Hand’ feature in Starfish 5 lets our students reach out for help on their own timeline, which is often before anyone else — or any technology system — tells us there is a problem.”

Unique Institutions, Students and Needs. With Starfish 5, institutions have more direct control than ever before over their student success technology. The release includes additional easy-to-use Web Wizard interfaces so institutions can, for example, quickly bundle students into cohorts and establish templates for communications to those groups.

The Starfish Enterprise Success Platform builds on the company’s mission to help students finish what they start. Comprising four distinct but connected modules, the platform enables institutions to view all their campus data and activities through the lens of student success. Starfish EARLY ALERT enables institutions to learn more about their students as early as possible. Starfish CONNECT makes it easy for students to engage with those on campus dedicated to their success. Starfish ADVISING gives students an academic path to follow in order to achieve success.

“Our client institutions are very different from each other, but they have one thing in common: The Starfish platform has become an integral part of their strategic student success initiatives,” said David Yaskin, CEO of Starfish Retention Solutions. “The Starfish 5 release is an exciting mix of innovative new features and enhancements designed to support the daily workflows of advisors and other key staff. We look forward to seeing the impact Starfish 5 will have on our clients’ approaches to student success.”

About Starfish

Starfish Retention Solutions is a leading provider of student success systems. The Starfish® Enterprise Success Platform™ helps institutions efficiently scale their student success programs so that more students can finish what they start. Specifically, the software identifies at-risk students in real time based on their daily course-work performance and faculty concerns and then connects them to the resources designed to help (e.g., advising or tutoring), all while assessing which services and interventions are working. For more information, visit

Oct. 15, 2014

by Hobsons


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