Students discover academic probation before termination

Kelsey Avers

This past summer, the counseling center gathered a list of students that were put on academic probation in fall 06, and personally called more than 2,000 students and invited them to come and speak to a counselor. The students were given the opportunity to sit down with a counselor and identify their goals to evaluate the reason(s) that they were placed on probation.

“We have an intervention for students success to find out [a students] academic difficulties,” said Jo Ann Alford, counselor and matriculation coordinator. “[The problem could be too many work hours, the student dropped a class and misunderstood the deadline, time management problems, a lack of academic preparation, a possible disability, financial need, family obligation, illness, or just a disconnection to the college; we explore that with them.”

Academic probation ensues when a student at Saddleback or Irvine Valley College has attempted at least 12 semester units and his or her grade point average in all units attempted is less than 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. Progress probation occurs when a student has received a “W”, “I” or “NC” in 50 percent or more of his or her total units. The student will receive a letter through either DSPS (Special Services) or EOPS (Extended Opportunity Programs and Services) notifying them whether they have been put on probation. Students on probation must be notified as directed in Title 5 of the educational code for California Community Colleges.

After the students meet with a counselor the two work together to try and discover a solution. Some counselors offer a number of recommendations. They suggest that the student reduce their workload or lower the number of units they are enrolled in.

Other assistance such as financial aid and a follow up with special services and career services is done. Personal counseling with the student is provided as well; in the case that the cause for the students grades suffering is any type of family issue.