Management Software for Allied Health Schools Boosts Retention, Engagement, and Compliance

Management Software for Allied Health Schools Boosts Retention, Engagement, and Compliance

Management Software for Allied Health Schools Boosts Retention, Engagement, and Compliance

Management software for allied health software helps automate externship attendance, prepare for audits, boost retention, and better engage online students. 

Allied health is the fastest-growing field in our workforce, projected to grow 15 percent from 2019 to 2029, adding 2.4 million jobs. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated this trend even further, with nursing school applications rising to the point where many nursing programs have 2-year waitlists.  

Allied health schools train students using cutting-edge technology like VR and simulations and pioneered the shift to online learning by offering continuing education like RN to BSN programs for students who already understand direct patient care fundamentals. But unfortunately, schools across the country have yet to embrace technology within their own back office, preventing them from scaling their programs. 

Why allied health schools should digitize academics, attendance, and compliance

Most allied health schools already use a student information system to house student data and a learning management system to publish readings, videos, discussion boards, and other learning materials. Both are highly valuable to allied health software, but they still rely on manual data entry and do not solve all the problems that staff  and externship coordinators face. To ensure back-office operations are running smoothly, allied health schoolsmust leverage software that integrates with both the SIS and CMS, automating back-office tasks and bridging the gap between the two systems. 

Management software empowers allied health institutions to know which students are absent in real-time, relieve staff of time-consuming manual attendance management, take a proactive approach to retention, and detect compliance issues before they become problematic. 

Blog: Learn the eight reasons why allied health and nursing schools should digitize student competency and skill tracking. 

Attendance software for allied health schools

LeeAnn Rohmann, CEO, Legacy Education

Despite quickly adopting advanced learning technology, many allied health schools still rely on manual data entry to transfer attendance data into the SIS. Manually collecting and entering attendance data in online and on-ground courses is already time-consuming 

and challenging, but allied health schools have the added difficulty of collecting externship and clinical attendance data.

Attendance software for on-ground learning

CourseKey’s mobile attendance solution gives staff a real-time view of student attendance. Students check in on their mobile device using secure technology, including Face ID/Fingerprint, QR-Code, GPS, or Soundwave. Attendance is automatically transferred to staff and into the SIS upon check in.

Staff has the data they need to intervene with at-risk students faster, and because they aren’t bogged down with manual data entry, they have extra time to take a proactive approach to retention. 

Attendance software for distance learning

CourseKey connects your LMS and SIS to automatically transfer online activities into the SIS, removing the burden from instructors. Instructors have more time to focus on supporting students and administrators have piece of mind knowing the LDA in the SIS is accurate. 

Case Study: How Hawaii Medical College streamlined online attendance to improve LDA determination

Attendance software for allied health externships and clinical 

When a student moves from an on-ground or online course to an externship or clinical setting, administrators lose visibility into the student’s attendance. Some allied health schools must wait weeks to receive attendance data via snail mail. Others collect self-reported attendance sheets from students and verify the data with a phone call to site preceptors. Site preceptors must sort through their records, sometimes weeks later, to verify the data. Administrators walk a fine line: Too much back and forth can endanger a school’s relationship with an externship site, but inaccurate attendance data leaves funding and accreditation at risk. 

Using CourseKey’s GPS attendance system, externship coordinators know precisely which site a student has checked into how long they’ve spent there by geofencing an entire externship site or a single room. Students can only check in once they are within the geofence, and the data is automatically transferred to the SIS. Clinical and externship coordinators can confirm if students have shown up to their sites through real-time attendance dashboards without calling the site.

When students complete clinical or externship hours, they can check out through the CourseKey app, automatically sending a record of hours to both the externship coordinator and site supervisor for review.

Retention software for allied health schools

With paper timesheets and manual data entry, administrators don’t know that a student has been absent until at least a week after the absence occurred. If students unknowingly fall behind in their externship hours, they get dropped from the program without allowing externship coordinators the chance to intervene and bring the student back on track. 

Attendance isn’t the only factor that goes into retention. You must also consider student grades, competencies, and experience. But when you’re tracking each component in a different place, it becomes difficult for your staff to see the entire student journey, and they may not know a student is at risk until it’s too late. 

CourseKey’s retention dashboard visualizes a complete picture of student risk with the touch of a button, allowing staff to take a proactive approach to retention. Staff can sort students by risk level to quickly determine which students need the most support. They spend less time managing data and more time acting on it. 

Improving retention rates is a win-win for everyone. Students achieve their certifications and go out in the field, while schools boost revenue and improve outcomes. 

Compliance software for allied health schools

Everything your school does impacts compliance. To remain compliant and prove that your school is running according to policy, staff must maintain accurate, verifiable records of all student and course time. Unfortunately, if you’re entering data into the SIS manually, it’s delayed and prone to human error.

CourseKey consolidates attendance data from all learning environments—online, on-ground, and externships—into one location, giving administrators access to real-time data that is verifiable down to the second. Student dashboards with exportable reports make it easy to prove processes and share records with accreditors without digging through boxes of paper files. In advance of audits, attendance dashboards give administrators an accurate, immediate view of LDA, streamlining the return to Title IV process. 

When compliance leaders have real-time attendance and course data, they can also take a proactive approach to compliance by examining behavioral data. For example, if an instructor regularly begins class late or ends class early, staff can step in and fix the issue before external audits occur. 

Case Study: How Unitek reduced findings by implementing CourseKey’s externship attendance solution.

Improving instructor morale with software and automation

Ena Hull, COO, Legacy Education

There’s a reason instructors call CourseKey a “lifesaver” and “the best thing since sliced bread.”

CourseKey eliminates the tasks they hate doing—pencil-pushing and data management—and gives them more time to focus on student success.

According to Ena Hull, COO of Legacy Education, CourseKey eliminated the burden of attendance and grades management from the instructors. 

Most allied health schools evaluate student skill development using paper-based tests, quizzes, and observational evaluations—all requiring manual grading and data entry. CourseKey digitizes quizzes, assessments, and observational assessments, eliminating manual grading and giving students instant access to their results. 

However, through CourseKey’s digital assessments, instructors can enter observational assessment results in real-time as students go through their evaluation. Instead of checking skills off on a list and making notes on paper that must be entered into the SIS later, instructors check skills off on a tablet. Evaluation data is automatically uploaded into the SIS and CourseKey’s app. Students receive instant feedback to help inform their studying.

Improving student experience with software

CourseKey improves school operations to the delight of staff, reduces administrative burden on instructors, but most importantly, it improves student experience.

Students enjoy having access to their hours and progress 24/7 at the touch of a 

Chad Jove, Student, High Desert Medical College

button without relying on someone else for updates. 

When you give students the resources they need to be accountable, they become accountable and make choices that help them progress towards graduation. According to Ena Hulla, COO of Legacy Education, CourseKey became similar to a fitness tracker for her students, fostering a great sense of responsibility. 

“It was fascinating how obsessed our students became with monitoring the attendance in their app,” said Ena. “You better clear out of the hallway before an 8 am class because students are literally running to class to get all their time.”

Software that empowers allied health schools

If you’d like to learn more about how CourseKey can streamline your allied health institute’s operations, request a demo at the form below. 

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