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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Northwest Success 360?

Northwest Success 360 is a student retention tool allowing for early alerts, appointment scheduling, progress surveys and identifying a student’s success network (advisors, faculty, peer advisor, R.A. and more). The online tool supports student success and engagement to help students connect with their instructors, advisors and staff to enhance and streamline communication across the campus community.

What is a flag and when should I use one?

Flags are designed to inform students when their performance is not meeting expectations. Faculty are encouraged to raise flags based on poor performance and/or attendance concerns. Raising a flag generates an automated email that is sent to the student (to which faculty can enter additional comments). When a student has been flagged by a faculty member, academic support is notified with an automated email in Northwest Success 360. Flagging a student through Northwest Success 360 creates a transparent communication trail that allows all individuals working with the student to see a clear picture of the student’s performance.

Why should I send a Northwest Success 360 flag to my student? Wouldn’t sending a personalized email from Northwest Online or my email account be easier?

Flagging students in Northwest Success 360 creates a transparent record that reflects students’ academic progress throughout the semester. In addition, it allows for transparent coordination of intervention efforts with academic support offices across the Northwest campus.

What happens when students are flagged?

When a faculty member sends a student a flag (early alert), the student receives an automatic email from the faculty member’s e-mail address. This email is specific to the course and flag that was raised. The email informs the student that there is concern about their progress in the course.

Who can raise a flag on a student?

Faculty members can flag students, raise kudos or send a referral for undergraduate students in undergraduate courses.

What is a Progress Survey?

Progress surveys are additional ways a faculty member can raise a flag. A progress survey provides qualitative information on students that are enrolled in their classes. During the fall 2016 semester, University Seminar faculty will pilot the use of progress surveys. 

It seems that a Progress Survey is mandatory. What if I don’t want to fill out a Progress Survey at Week 4 and Week 8?

The Progress Survey is not mandatory, and, there are other ways an instructor can raise a flag other than using the Progress Surveys. If you choose not to participate in the Progress Survey, we just ask that you “submit” the survey with “no concerns at this time”. And, if you don’t have any progress or performance issues to report on at week 4 and/or week 8, keep in mind that you can raise flags (or kudos) throughout the semester using other methods. For more information on using Progress Surveys and other methods of issuing flags and kudos, please see the following guides: Progress Survey Guide (PDF) and Raising Flags and Kudos (PDF).

What is a Kudo and when should I use one?

It depends. Since faculty understand their course the best and in order to provide them with control of the messages sent to students, faculty are encouraged to raise flags and kudos. 

How can I locate flag/kudo information (tracking items) after I raise them?

There are multiple ways to search and filter information in Northwest Success 360. For more information on how to do so, please see the following guide: Tracking Items (PDF) .

Who can view early alert information?

Faculty and teaching assistants can view student information related to the course(s) they are teaching (as indicated in CatPaws and/or Northwest Online). Academic advisors and other faculty/staff can view student information only if they have a “one-to-one” connection with that student.

How should I inform students that they may receive a flag or kudo?

Faculty members are welcome to display information about flags/kudos in the course syllabus, course announcements, and share with students in class. 

Can I take attendance through Northwest Success 360?

Northwest Success 360 allows faculty to quickly record attendance about students in class. Faculty may also select students who have been absent and send messages through the Northwest Success 360 interface. 

Why can’t I see students who are not in my classes or my advisees?

Northwest Success 360 provides faculty with detailed information about students that are enrolled in their class or are their advisee. Only directory information is available for those students with whom faculty do not have a direct relationship.  

How much additional time will it take me to use Northwest Success 360?

It depends on how much the tool is utilized in the course. Faculty are encouraged to send flags and kudos after the first major assignment, following exams/major projects and prior to finals. Additional flags and kudos may be sent throughout the semester or whenever they deem it necessary.

I’m concerned about learning a new piece of software. How do I receive help using Northwest Success 360, or schedule some training?

Northwest Success 360 is a student success tool housed within Enrollment Management and Student Academic Success. Northwest Success 360 workshops are scheduled throughout the fall and spring semesters. Please contact for more information or to schedule a training session for faculty/staff.

Will I get overloaded with emails if I use Northwest Success 360?

No. Northwest Success 360 allows faculty to configure email settings so that they can receive a daily digest that summarizes flag and kudos activity. Also, Northwest Success 360 support can assist with setting up a rule in Outlook. Therefore, emails from Northwest Success 360 are routed directly to a folder to view at one’s convenience.

How do I set up my Northwest Online course so I can use Northwest Success 360 Early Alert?

Northwest Online courses and gradebook data will automatically feed into Northwest Success 360 with no configuration needed by faculty. To use the Zoom-In* feature within Northwest Success 360, please access our Early Alert (PDF) guide, or watch one of our How-To Videos on how to use this feature.

* The purpose of the Zoom In feature is to give instructors the ability to filter students’ performance by grade information in the Northwest Online grade book and select multiple students at a time to raise a flag or kudo.

How will students access Northwest Success 360?

Students can access Northwest Success 360 in two ways. Students may simply login to Northwest Online and select Northwest Success 360 from the left side of the page. Or, students may login directly to Northwest Success 360 by clicking on the icon at the top of the page in myNorthwest.

I am trying to use Early Alert but it does not seem to be working. Who should I contact?

Email with any questions or to schedule a Northwest Success 360 training session for faculty and/or the department.