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Transitioning From At-Risk to STARs:

Using Counseling-Based Interventions

with Students on Academic Probation
Courtney B. Walters Dr. Ki Byung Chae

Timothy Hunt
Session Agenda
Introduction of presenters
Background, development, and
implementation of STAR Program
Assessments and analysis of STAR Program
Current practices and future of STAR Program
Questions and discussion
Initial Conversations
(Summer/Fall 2014)
Academic Resource Mentoring Program
Began Spring 2012
Peer mentoring program for students on
academic probation
University system budget cuts
Affordable Care Act
Limited work hours of student and
temporary employees
How do we do MORE
with LESS?
Develop internship/volunteer opportunities for
masters level students in counseling and social
Create partnerships with academic
Update or add programs to meet the
internship requirements
Improved programming for students on
academic probation
Individualized goals and treatment planning
vs. syllabus model
Consideration of noncognitive factors
limiting the success of these students: self
efficacy, sense of belonging, sources of
social/emotional support, time
management skills
Development of the
Striving Toward Academic
Recovery (STAR) Program
Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program
students enrolled in practicum course
Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC)
Population Served
Students who have been academically
suspended and have:
1. Appealed the suspension and it was
approved; returning the following
2. Either appealed the suspension and it was
not approved or chose not to appeal; sat
out for the designated suspension period
and have been readmitted to the
Development of the
STAR Program
Intake Interview and Treatment Planning
Comprehensive, structured intake packet
Learning and Study Strategies Inventory
College Self-Efficacy Inventory (CSEI)
Meeting Format(s)
Both Individual and Group
Piloted Spring 2015
STAR Program Updates
Clinical Mental Health Counseling students
enrolled in practicum or internship course (Fall
Paid Graduate Assistantships (Spring 2016)
Additions to Population Served
First year students who earn below a 1.5 GPA
during their first semester enrolled, as required
by the UNCP Academic Catalog (Fall 2015)
Students who are on academic probation and are
recommended to participate in STAR on their
Academic Success Contract, which is completed
with a member of the Center for Student Success
staff (Fall 2015)
Students who are voluntarily participating in STAR
STAR Program Updates
Addition of intake packet for returning students
(Spring 2016)
Meeting spaces, supplies, technology (ongoing)
Registration holds placed on accounts at
midterm for students who were required to
participate in STAR (UNCP Catalog or Academic
Success Contract) and had not met with one of
our counselors. (Spring 2016)
STAR Program selection was updated to Opted
Out based on lack of participation at midterm
(not attending, not scheduled for follow up
appointments). (Spring 2016)
Stress Management Workshop Series (Spring
Spring 2016
Demographics and Academic Standing
Male: 142 (43.83%)
Female: 180 (55.55%)
Not Reported: 2 (0.62%)
African American: 177 (54.63%)
American Indian/Alaskan Native: 57 (17.59%)
Asian Pacific Islander: 1 (0.32%)
Hispanic/Latino: 12 (3.7%)
Other: 12 (3.7%)
White, Non-Hispanic: 63 (19.44%)
Not Reported: 2 (0.62%)
Spring 2016
GPA Comparisons
Spring 2016 Feedback
33 students (approximately 10%)
submitted feedback via online evaluation.
32 (96.97%) said they were satisfied with
the STAR Program services provided.
What students liked:
Advice, support, and encouragement
Counselor qualities (genuine, easy to talk
Safe place to openly discuss academic
One-on-one personal attention
Assistance with setting achievable goals
Academically suspended or first-year
students earning below a 1.5 GPA in their
first semester
Intake Form
Research Design
Academic Achievement: Pre-and posttest
control design (One-way ANCOVA)
Self-Efficacy & Learning and Study
Strategies: Pair-sample t-test
Results: Academic
222 students were invited
Control group: 62 students
Intervention group: 68 students
Completed more than five
counseling sessions (48%)
Academic Performance
After adjustment for previous term GPA,
there was a significant difference in GPA
between the interventions.
Mean scores indicate that students in the
STAR program (M = .23) obtained a GPA
difference significantly larger than the
control group (M = .14), F (1, 127) = 4.30, p <
.05, partial 2 = 0.03.
Results: Self-Efficacy
Participants (n = 67)
Female (n = 45; 67.2%); Male (n = 22; 32.8%)
African American (n = 38; 56.7%); White (n = 12; 17.9%);
American Indian (n= 11; 16.4%); Others (n = 6; 9%)
Paired-sample t-test
CSEI total scores increased significantly from the initial
assessment to the posttest, t(66) = -4.96, p< .01, d = 0.61.
Three CSEI subscale scores also significantly increased
Course self-efficacy [t(66) = -6.06, p < .01, d = 0.74]
Social self-efficacy [t(66) = -3.50, p < .01, d = 0.43]
Social integration self-efficacy [t(66) = -4.39, p < .01, d
= 0.54]
CSEI total and subscale scores did not have statistically
significant relationships to gender and ethnicity.
Results: Learning and
Study Strategies
Participants (n = 78)
Female (n = 50; 64.1%) & Male (n = 28;
African American (n = 46; 59%); White (n =
14; 17.9%); American Indian (n= 11; 14.1%;
Others (n = 7; 9%)
Paired-sample t-test
Statistically significant increase in the
posttest scores for all 10 scales of the LASSI.
Participants awareness and use of study
strategies assessed on the LASSI improved
by the end of the semester.
Results: Learning and Study Strategies
Mean Difference t df Sig. (2-tailed) D
Anxiety 4.89 5.96 77 0.001 0.67
Attitude 1.95 4.70 77 0.001 0.53
Concentration 4.21 8.09 77 0.001 0.92
Information 3.30 6.42 77 0.001 0.73
Motivation 3.64 7.22 77 0.001 0.82
Self-Testing 4.92 7.98 77 0.001 0.90
Selecting Main 3.39 5.91 77 0.001 0.66
Study Aids 4.68 8.59 77 0.001 0.97
Time 5.49 8.52 77 0.001 0.96
Test Strategies 3.89 7.71 77 0.001 0.87
STAR Updates
At the end of the 2016 Spring semester,
interns completed a SWOT analysis of the
From the feedback we,
Increased Supervision to one on one vs dual
Created a Policy and Procedures manual for STAR
Created a session manual as a guide for new interns
Hired a Social Work graduate student to serve as our
student case manager/receptionist for student
follow up(no shows).
Changed the intake process
Implemented the Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating
Scale (Crisis Protocol)
STAR Updates
Currently, we have 127 active students participating
in STAR.
Academic Counseling Session Plans cover:
S.M.A.R.T Goals
Time Management
Testing & Anxiety
Setting Healthy Boundaries with self & others
Institutional Commitment
Campus Resources