New College Software Seeks to Personalize Recommendations

Imagine a system that collects information about students in order to make useful suggestions regarding course schedules, instructors, and services. Here are a few examples of how this system could benefit students:

  • New Students receives a link to the online orientation
  • A student with a high GPA receives a link to the honors program; a student with low grades will be pointed to tutoring services.
  • Based on the pattern of classes you’ve taken in the past, a class schedule will be created – already screened for prerequisites. They also don’t have a time conflict with when a work schedule.

There is a recently developed technology system called Sherpa which does just this. With more information about students, the suggestions could get more specific. What do you think about this type of technology? Is it a great new convenience or is data mining student information inappropriate?