MAP (Making Achievement Possible) began at Ball State University in the late 1980s as a tool for assisting students in realizing their goal of a college education. MAP provided beneficial information to administrators who needed to understand why their students were leaving the university before they obtained their degree(s). Once armed with this information, programs and training were put into place to address those specific issues and retention numbers steadily began to improve. Moreover, student satisfaction improved because students felt that their specific concerns were being addressed.
Ball State University eventually partnered with Educational Benchmarking Institute (EBI) to streamline MAP in order to make it available nationwide to other universities who were experiencing similar obstacles. MAP became Mapworks and universities across the country began using it to further empower their staff members to assist students in overcoming obstacles, setting goals, understanding expectations, seeking assistance, and ultimately graduating from their institution.
Although most of the science behind the technology is proprietary, we have added some of our student data to help give us the best overall student profile possible. These include admissions data and background characteristics, as well as their on-campus involvement such as athletics and residence hall assignment.
The process is quite simple. It starts with a few surveys that a student completes throughout their academic year. Once completed, the student can instantly access a report that shows them where they can make improvements based on the answers that they have provided. The tool also shows them how they compare to other students within the university.
As a faculty or staff member at SAU, you benefit from Mapworks by gaining access to a rich profile of your new students and their potential areas of concern. This information can guide your conversations and address the issues that may be keeping them from moving forward. Everyone wins!