UMKC Connect and Early Alert

Frequently Asked Questions


When should early alerts be initiated?

Early intervention is the key to a successful early alert system. Early alerts are most critical during the first 6 weeks of courses and prior to mid-term so that intervention can take place while there is still time to make the necessary adjustments and change course outcomes.

Instructors are encouraged to submit academic alerts as soon as a student is identified as "at risk" for course failure. Early alerts may be initiated for a variety of reasons that impact the student's success including excessive absences, poor exam/quiz grades and lack of participation in class. Serious disciplinary issues and non-academic behavioral issues can also be submitted via the early alert system using the "ATTENTION! IMMEDIATE RESPONSE REQUIRED" flags. These concerns are routed directly to the appropriate academic advisor.

Progress surveys are initiated at strategic points of the semester to solicit specific feedback on student performance. The academic alert system, however, is accessible throughout the entire semester.

Who has access to the Academic Alert system?

The early alert system is accessible to various individuals on campus that are either connected to the specific type of alert/flag or connected to the student as a referral service or academic advising. Students are the main focus of the system and will be notified via campus e-mail for appropriate flags.

Course faculty only have access to the system for the courses they are currently teaching. Faculty may add comments or refer a student to a specific campus resource when additional areas of concern are identified at any time. Please Note: General comments made by faculty on the early alert system are shared with the student as part of the automated e-mail that is generated when a flag is raised. Faculty comments should focus strictly on concerns that need to be addressed.

Academic Unit Advisors staff will be able to view all flags and referrals, add comments, resolve/close flags and assign appropriate campus resources if necessary. Campus referral resources such as Health, Wellness and Counseling, UMKC Central, Financial Aid, Disability Access Services and Multicultural Student Services will be allowed to view and comment on the referrals forwarded to their departments.

Can I submit more than one alert for a student during the same semester?

Yes. Alerts can be initiated as many times as necessary.

Can I submit an early alert on a graduate-level student?

The original target group for the early alert system was undergraduate students but the system can be used for graduate students.

Who is responsible for raising, taking action and resolving each flag?

Most flags are designed to be raised by faculty on students in their courses. Each type of flag has a set of support staff that have different levels of responsibility and visibility to the flags to provide essential monitoring for student academic success yet preserve concerns for privacy. Four categories exist for each flag

  • Who is allowed to raise the flag?
  • Who receives an email alert when the flag is raised?
  • Who is able to view the email in the student Connect folder?
  • Who is responsible for taking appropriate action and resolving the flag/alert?
A full chart of flags and management protocols can be located on this website in the Early Alert Flags section entitled Flag Responsibilities

What are some examples of how early alerts are handled?

For flags labeled "Action Required" a student would be contacted by their academic advisor to discuss the issue specified by the flag. The advisor would work with the student to determine the best course of action, which could include some of the following options:

  • Assist the student in clarifying his/her goals for enrollment and why class attendance is important in achieving those goals.
  • Suggest time management workshops and techniques that could assist the student in managing a busy schedule.
  • If warranting circumstances exist, discuss appropriate process/procedure for course withdrawal.
  • Evaluation of student schedule and commitments.
  • Making an appointment for student to take advantage of one or more support services (i.e. tutoring, supplemental instruction, academic support labs...)
  • Recommendation for attendance at appropriate study-skill workshops.
  • Referral to Disability Access Services (where applicable).
  • Assist the student to prepare for a meeting with the faculty member during office hours.

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