Faculty & Staff :: SAILS

SAILS (Student Assistance & Intervention for Learning Success)

Student Assistance & Intervention for Learning Success (SAILS) is a communication and course management system accessible through MyVWCC designed to improve student success through the use of faculty referrals for students experiencing academic challenges. Based on these referrals, students can quickly be connected with resources to support their achievement of academic and life goals.

SAILS is available to all adjunct and full-time faculty as well as identified student support and student services professionals. However, the availability of features in SAILS may vary for these roles.

Role Raise Flags & Kudos
(PDF)
Submit Progress Surveys
(PDF)
Record Notes in Student Folders
(PDF)
Record Attendance
(PDF)
View Attendance Information (if recorded) Allow Appointment Scheduling
(PDF)
Instructors Y Y Y - Students in Course Y - Students in Course Y - Students in Course Y - Students in Course
Faculty
Advisors
Y - Only General Concern N Y - All Students N Y - All Students Y - Assigned Advisees
Advisors
(non-faculty)
Y - Only General Concern N Y - All Students N Y - All Students Y - All Students (if enabled by department)

Note: Full-time Faculty members with advising responsibilities have the role of instructor and Faculty Advisor.

Additional SAILS-related instructions can be found on Navigate MyVWCC.

Need a quick reference? Download the SAILS Tracking Item Guide.

Instructors: any adjunct or full-time faculty member teaching a course
Faculty Advisors: any full-time faculty member with advising responsibilities
Advisors: New Student Advisors, Program Advisors

SAILS Automatic Emails & Academic Interventions

These templates outline the emails and interventions that occur once a Flag or Kudo is raised in SAILS.

SAILS Flags

SAILS Kudos

SAILS Glossary of Terms

Flag A notification that can be raised when a student is experiencing difficulty in a course
Kudo A notification that can be raised to acknowledge a student's positive efforts towards academic success
Progress Survey A report that allows you to easily raise flags
Relationship An instructional or advising context through which a faculty or staff member may interact with a student; defines who you can access in the system and what information you can view
Role Your position at the college as it relates to SAILS; defines your access in the system
Starfish The company that produces and manages SAILS
Student Folder A student's profile in SAILS that includes a broad overview of their academic information (tracking item history, notes from faculty and staff, etc.)
Success Network All of the faculty and staff who have a relationship with a student in SAILS
Tracking Item General term used to refer to flags and kudos

SAILS Best Practices for Instructors

  1. As an instructor, please avoid raising the General Concern Flag unless no other Flag is relevant for your concern.
  2. If you have multiple concerns for a student that may span more than on Flag, raise one Flag that relates to your most salient concern. Additional concerns can be addressed through comments added to the Flag.
  3. Use the SAILS attendance feature to record attendance. This automatically updates as students add/drop/withdraw from courses, so using SAILS for attendance eliminates the need to continuously print rosters from PeopleSoft throughout the semester.
  4. Complete Progress Surveys as requested (1 to 2 times a semester for each course). When a survey is due, an email will be sent to your Virginia Western email account from the Vice President of Academic & Student Affairs.
  5. If you have a concern about a student that you think needs to be communicated as a part of the student record for informational purposes, but additional intervention beyond is not required at this time, add a Note to the student’s record. If the concern escalates and additional intervention is needed, raise a Flag.
  6. SAILS is an academic alert system. Please do not use this system to address issues of academic integrity, behavior, or emotional well-being.
  7. Flags, Kudos, comments, and notes are disclosable under FERPA and subject to subpoena through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  Focus information on academic issues; avoid opinion, conjecture, and supposition.

SAILS Best Practices for New Student, Program, and Faculty Advisors

  1. When meeting with a student regarding academic planning, check SAILS to see if there are any Flags or Kudos that may give relevant information about academic performance.
  2. If you discuss an academic concern related to a SAILS Flag, clear the Flag and use the Close the Loop feature to send an automatic email to the person who raised the Flag. In the Close the Loop text box, include a brief summary of your interaction with the student.
  3. Always include the student’s name when Closing the Loop. Unless you include the student’s name in the text box, the email received by the person who raised the Flag does not identify the student.
  4. Avoid using abbreviations in SAILS (Ex: l/m for Left Message; f/u for Follow-Up). Abbreviated language hinders effective communication.
  5. SAILS is an academic alert system. Please do not use this system to address issues of academic integrity, behavior, or emotional well-being.
  6. Flags, Kudos, comments, and notes are disclosable under FERPA and subject to subpoena through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Focus information on academic issues; avoid opinion, conjecture, and supposition.