McGraw-Hill’s Connect, SmartBook Boosts Engagement, Retention


In the recently released McGraw-Hill Connect Effectiveness Study 2016, significant improvement was documented among student outcomes through the use of adaptive technology.
Researchers for McGraw-Hill Education looked at and analyzed data from 20 higher education case studies among colleges that used Connect and SmartBook between 2014 and 2015.
Connect is a digital learning environment that allows assignments, grading and course content to all be housed in one location for higher education students as well as for instructors.  The platform features SmartBook, which offers an adaptive reading experience, as well as integrated learning resources, reporting, a visual analytics dashboard. SmartBook gives 24/7 mobile access that allows an engaging learning experience for students and educators.  The platform is available in over 90 disciplines throughout qualitative and quantitative course areas.
SmartBook offers users a way to use study time more efficiently and productively by identifying knowledge gaps and working to close them through a series of personalized learning resources offered when needed.  The goal of the tool is to provide students with an optimal way to use to their study time – essentially, a way to make every minute count.
The use of the technology showed significant increases in both the rates of passage and retention.
Study authors reported 15% more students earning As and Bs when using Connect, which brought the percentage of students with those grades from 50.3% to 65.3%.  A 13 point improvement was seen in passing rates, bringing them from 72.5% 85.2%.  In addition, an almost 20 point improvement was observed in student retention, from 70.1% to 89.9%.
Positive outcomes were noticed among instructors as well, who spent 72% less time on administrative tasks and 90% more time on active learning experiences.
Connect noted increased engagement in 2015, with 3 million paid activations amounting to a 16% increase from the previous year.  Usage levels were also up, with 89 million student assignments submitted and 10 million instructor assignments created.
Students have answered 5 billion questions using LearnSmart, which powers SmartBook, since 2009.  Each interaction causes the SmartBook technology to become more intelligent and more capable of finding the knowledge gaps and adapting to the needs of individual students.
The platform allows professors to provide individualized instruction in a large class through a number of features, including Connect Insight, which offers student performance all in one place and is organized to offer easy access to both aggregate and individual results.  Reports and charts can be created across a variety of variables to give educators the ability to evaluate performance throughout a course, as a class, or for individual students in order to help keep students on track to succeed.  The “At-Risk Report” offers instructors the ability to quickly look at each student’s engagement in course materials to easily identify those students who may be struggling to pass or are more likely to drop the course.
The reports also allow educators to see where students are having trouble so they can then tailor lectures, assignments and study materials to help these students succeed.

“Our studies indicate that with Connect, students were more engaged in the material, more likely to stay in class and more likely to achieve successful outcomes. Instructors were able to make better use of their time and to implement more active instruction, intervene with struggling students, and facilitate greater student success in their classes.”


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