Nudges are small pushes in the right direction that do not require prescribed actions, but encourage certain behaviors. Nudges use different techniques to elicit the types of behaviors we want from students.
Mindset messages focus on a student’s perspective about themselves, their school, and their ability to achieve their goals, which impacts their likelihood to succeed. For example, students who believe that intelligence is not fixed and that they can improve with practice are more likely to rebound from failure and ultimately persist. This is referred to as having a growth mindset.
Mattering messages focus on a student’s beliefs about their relationship with their school and their learning community, which affects their motivation to work through challenges. For example, if a student is challenged academically or socially, they may feel like they do not belong in college. Alternatively, when students believe they are a part of a community of learners experiencing college in a similar way, and that faculty and staff care about their success, they feel like they belong in college and their participation in the community matters.
Messages that normalize the student’s experience, helping them to feel like they are experiencing what other students are experiencing, that show empathy for the challenging aspects of the student experience, and that help students orient their goals from performance (earning specific grades) to learning are also effective nudging techniques and should be included, as appropriate, in both mindset and mattering nudges.
We have seen several ClearScholar customers use nudges and different nudging techniques to drive student engagement and success. Below are some examples of such content.
Poll: College can be a stressful time for any student, what methods are you using to manage your stress at [school]?
I ask for help when needed - both academically and socially (instructor, tutor, adviser success coach, financial aid, friends)
I pace myself and am aware of issues like energy and stress management
I am warming to the idea of asking for help
It’s safe to say that stress can be an issue. I am not comfortable asking for help - yet.
Poll: If you knew someone struggling academically or socially, what advice would you give?
You are not alone - this is normal and will get better with time
Let others help - accept their invitations to social events or just grabbing a cup of coffee
Manage stress by eating a balanced diet, getting plenty of rest, and exercising regularly
Talk to someone who can help! An adviser, a mentor, coach or tutor
Poll: How do you plan to grow from your college experience?
By increasing confidence in myself and finding my unique voice
By making life-long friendships
By recognizing that even if I make mistakes, I am learning and becoming more resilient
By taking more risks and getting outside of my comfort zone
Push Notification: Another week accomplished! What did you learn this week that you want to take with you?
Push Notification: Whose encouragement helps drive your commitment to school?
Push Notification: What is the most meaningful feedback you have received this semester, and how can it help you in the future?