UWL's instructors and staff are committed to student success.  Eagle Alert allows instructors to provide feedback during the 5th week of classes regarding academic concerns.  Eagle Alert also allows instructors/advisors to provide feedback on academic or professional concerns, student potential, and/or advising sessions at any time.  The use of Eagle Alert by instructors/staff is voluntary but highly encouraged.  The student receives an email and can access the feedback through WINGS after an instructor and/or advisor provides feedback.

Feedback for Student Success

Eagle Alert serves two primary purposes:

  1. To provide students an early alert during the semester if there are academic concerns by their instructors.
  2. To facilitate communication between a student and their instructors and advisors throughout their college career.

Eagle Alert is a system within WINGS where faculty/staff can leave feedback for a student regarding:

  1. Concerns related to academic progress and/or professionalism.
  2. Promise seen in a student's coursework or college career.
  3. Advising discussions and notes (viewable by student).

Highlights of UWL's EAGLE ALERT system:

  • Replaces previous request system for reporting by the Office of Multicultural Student Services (OMSS).
  • Provides academic feedback early in the semester to allow for improvement, if needed.
  • Increases communication between a student, instructors and advisors.
  • A WINGS-based system.
  • Systematizes feedback for the School of Education (SOE).

How to videos/screenshots (50 seconds, no audio track)

  • Student:  Accessing feedback left by a faculty/staff member.  When a student clicks on the link in the email indicated that feedback has been left, the student will be redirected to WINGS.  After logging in, the student will be at their student center.  From the pull down menu the student can select "Eagle Alert"  and once clicked, a pdf report of all feedback will be displayed.  The pull down menu is the same menu where students access AR-Advisement Reports.  Pop-up blockers will need to be turned off.  
  • Instructor: Providing feedback to a student in a class.  Spring 2014 - the categories for the "academic" tab  have been modified  from those shown in the video.  The purpose of the early feedback is to provide an alert to the student if there are concerns regarding their academic performance - most instructors will be using the " academic " tab.  The " professionalism " tab is designed for feedback regarding students in professional education programs such as teacher education.
  • Advisor:  After clicking on the Eagle Alert <!> triangle associated with the student, choose the "all feedback report" (see screenshot) or choose "Eagle Alert System" in the pull down menu where the AR-Advisement Report is selected
  • Review any advising notes you have on your previous meetings - in Eagle Alert or other system.
  • Communicate your expectations to your advisees prior to the meeting (see sample statement below)
    • I look forward to our meeting. Our session will be the most productive if you come with questions or topics to discuss. If the meeting is in regards to registration, it will be helpful to me if you bring a list of the courses you are thinking about for the next term (not a schedule - desired courses and alternates for them if they are closed). In addition, a proposed plan mapping out your courses for each semester until graduation is often helpful. I will be assuming that you are familiar with WINGS (especially "my planner" ) and the Catalog.  Please review Students Responsibilities - Getting the Most out of advising.

Meeting with your advisee:

  • Ask your advisee how his or her semester is progressing.
    • Discuss classroom performance - is he/she mastering the material and gaining the grades needed for their next term? Did he/she get any Eagle Alert concerns raised this semester.
    • Inquire about his/her non-academic life (campus activities, jobs, relationships, family, etc.) "How is the rest of your life going?  Anything that is interfering with your school work?"
      • Many students do not know how to advocate for themselves or find help that they may need. Let him/her know that resources are available if he/she is struggling with any issue. Pressing concerns should be referred to the Student Life Office (Andrew Ives or Angie Lee).
      • Ask your advisee how the content of his/her coursework fits into her/his larger career and life goals. 
  • Advisement Report (AR) on WING - review with the student.  Discuss his/her prepared plans and progress toward completion of each of the 4 major sets of requirements:
    • University requirements for graduation (120 credits & 40 credits of 300/400 level coursework)
    • General Education Coursework
    • College Core Coursework
    • Major coursework and minor or program options (if applicable)
  • Ask the student if his/her questions/topics were addressed.
  • Encourage the student to take utilize Career Services for career exploration, internships, connecting with employers, resume/cover letter assistance, graduate/professional school applications, interviewing preparation, etc. Remember that there are a variety of campus resources available to assist students on a wide range of issues.

After meeting with your advisee:

  • Post advising notes in Eagle Alert (or in a note system of your own) if you want to remind your advisee to follow up on an action or if there is an item of information you feel other parties on campus would find useful to know or that you will want to remember for the next advising meeting with the student. 

Questions you can't answer?  Your College Dean's Office, the Academic Advising Center, and the Catalog are the best resources.  Graduation eligibility and commencement information for students

Why would an instructor/staff member use the system? expanding section

UWL instructors and staff are committed to student success. The system has been designed to help aid communication regarding students between the student, their instructors, and other important staff. The system is designed so that instructors/staff can use it very sparingly or widely - the extent of the use is up to each individual. In addition, the system is designed to facilitate the ease of its most basic goal - allowing instructors to identify students in their courses who are most in need of receiving early feedback on their progress, quickly and easily. In addition, if helpful to advising, the system allows faculty to enter quick or lengthier advising notes on a student.  Instructors can enter academic or professional concerns at any time and/or note potential positive options for students that the student can access.

Is the use of the system mandatory? expanding section

No. The use of Eagle Alert is voluntary but highly encouraged, especially for the early identification of behaviors associated with poor academic outcomes AND for promoting communication with students regarding advising. 

Should I include a statement in my syllabus? expanding section

Although it is not required, instructors who plan to participate actively in the Eagle Alert system are encouraged to add a statement to each syllabus.

Suggested wording: This class will be participating in the "Eagle Alert" system through WINGS. The Eagle Alert system is designed to promote student success. If I notice that you are experiencing difficulties early in the semester (e.g., low assignment scores or poor attendance), I may enter feedback into the program and you will receive an email indicating that feedback has been left. I may also enter positive feedback encouraging you to think about additional opportunities. The link in the email will take you to WINGS where you will login to see the feedback. I encourage you to meet with me and use one or more of several helpful resources listed at the Student Success website.  

When would a faculty/staff member use the system? expanding section

On the Friday of the 4th week of classes during the Fall and Spring semesters, the Provost's Office will send an email to instructors encouraging them to provide feedback on students enrolled in their courses by the end of the 5th week. A reminder will be sent Wednesday of the 5th week. Although the request will be sent in both Fall and Spring, there will be more students in the Fall flagged as needing possible feedback.

Eagle Alert can also be used anytime a faculty/staff member wishes to submit feedback.

Which students should receive the early alert feedback regarding their progress during the semester? expanding section

The system has been designed to simplify providing feedback. Class lists will be sorted into 3 levels of students and instructors will be particularly encouraged to provide feedback on the first two levels, especially  if they have concerns. 

  • Level 1:  Students potentially most in need of early feedback regarding their progress as indicated by research literature and UWL data and programming.
  • Level 2:  Students enrolled in professional education programs where accreditation standards require an assessment of students' professionally-related behaviors.
  • Level 3:  The vast majority of UWL students - those not included in Level 1 or Level 2

Instructors will also have the ability to sort class lists by last name. 

How does a faculty/staff member enter information regarding a student? expanding section

Instructors can enter the system via WINGS:

  1. Through Faculty Center > My Schedule OR through the email from the Provost's Office requesting Early Alert feedback from instructors.
  2. Through the Advisor Center by entering an individual student's name.

Staff can enter the system via WINGS:

  1. Through the UW-La Crosse menu > Eagle Alert system.
  2. Through the Advisor Center (if staff member has assigned advisees) by entering an individual student's name.
Why is the feedback requested relatively early in the semester? expanding section

The scholarship on student success clearly indicates that students need feedback regarding their progress early enough in the semester to be able to correct problematic behaviors in time to affect academic outcomes. Research indicates that "mid-semester" feedback is too late. In addition, students with timely feedback may be better able to make choices regarding withdrawals. Faculty and staff active in the academic application of Inclusive Excellence were consulted regarding the timing.  

What does "feedback" mean? What does "academic progress" mean? expanding section

The focus of Eagle Alert is on behavior rather than "just" a course grade. The system was designed to reflect common concerns associated with behaviors associated with poor academic outcomes with a simple check box. An instructor may check the box and/or provide written commentary to elaborate or reflect an additional topic in a text box. Consequently, "feedback" refers to a check box and/or written notes submitted on a student. The list of categories and check boxes available are shown in this Eagle Alert presentation.  

Academic progress refers to behaviors and/or assessed work in the class. Although some courses, disciplines, and/or faculty find it easier to provide early feedback than others, the research indicates that it is positive for students to have a sense of their trajectory in a course as early as possible. Although a standard exam or paper may not yet be graded, students may have completed quizzes, assignments, lab work, D2L discussions, quizzes on syllabi content, or the like for a class. For courses that require the use of D2L, students who have not logged into the system early in the semester are likely to be at risk. 

Who can see the feedback? expanding section

The student will be notified when feedback is provided and will be able to see all past and current comments/check boxes. The student's advisor(s) will also be notified. Advisors, instructors, and UWL personnel with a FERPA recognized "need to know" (such as the Student Life) will be able to access the information. We invite all university personnel to re-familiarize themselves with the specifics of FERPA. Generally speaking, only individuals with the proper WINGS clearance and a legitimate educational interest should access the information available for purposes such as: providing a service or benefit relating to the student such as advising or job placement, or otherwise performing a task related to the effective functioning of the University. Furthermore, you may not disclose student information in any form to anyone except another instructor/staff member with a need to know. Personal interest or the simple fact that you are a university employee with access does not constitute a "need to know."

Can an instructor edit or change his/her feedback? expanding section

Yes. Although the students are only emailed upon the time of the original feedback, the instructor can edit/change the response left.

How is the student/advisor notified? expanding section

When a faculty/staff member leaves feedback, the student will receive an email. The email will contain a notice similar to the example mocked-up below. The advisor(s) will receive a courtesy copy of the notice only if feedback has been left for a Early Alert student.


From: noreply@uwlax.edu
Subject: Eagle Alert: A faculty/staff member has entered feedback on your progress at UWL Date: February 25, 2014 10:16:09 AM CST
To: student.chri@uwlax.edu

Professor, Pat Y.  has entered feedback on your progress at UWL into WINGS.

To review the information please click here and you will be directed to log into your WINGS account.

Under the blue "Academics" heading next to your schedule, choose "Eagle Alert System" from the "other academic..." pull down menu. Click the right arrow and a pdf report will pop-up with any feedback that has been provided.

Eagle Alert provides UWL instructors and staff the ability to leave feedback for individual students in regards to academic progress. If you have received feedback associated with concerns regarding your progress, UWL strongly encourages you to contact your instructor. In addition to your instructor, UWL has an excellent set of resources associated with student success that are listed here - /studentsuccess/.

What if a student wants to discuss and/or change the feedback? expanding section

Students are encouraged to discuss the feedback with their instructors. If a student feels that the feedback left is erroneous or unfair, the student should proceed as with a grade appeal. That is, the student should first discuss the situation with their instructor. If an issue remains that needs resolution, the student should contact the department chair overseeing the department under which the course is offered.  

What is the relationship of the new Eagle Alert System to the survey reporting on "OMSS" students that instructors used to complete? expanding section

The Eagle Alert system replaces the OMSS (Office of Multicultural Student Services) survey and SOE (School of Education) check sheets in order to reduce faculty effort in this area and create a common system.  

Why is this system separate from D2L? expanding section

It would seem natural to have a more automatic relationship with D2L and a system like the Eagle Alert System. However, at this time, D2L is unable to offer us that option. Even if D2L were to interface with Eagle Alert, the benefit of this system is the ability for the student, their advisor(s), and other instructors to be able to see feedback that has been provided - a possibility that D2L's individual course structure cannot provide.

Who was involved in designing the system? expanding section

The Eagle Alert work group (representing faculty, AAC, OMSS, Student Life, the Writing Center, the college offices, and IT), and the Advising across the College Career Work group (representing faculty, AAC and the college offices). Two primary groups were involved in the development in the content of the system. The initial group consisted of:

  • Institutional Research - Natalie Solverson (HLC executive) - Chair
  • IT - Cari Mathwig Ramsier (IT - D2L)
  • IT - Greg Steele (IT - WINGS)
  • Faculty - Ginny Crank (CLS - Writing Center)
  • Faculty - James Peirce (SAH)
  • Faculty - Ronda Leahy (CLS)
  • Faculty - Kris Rosacker (CBA)
  • Faculty - CATL rep - Deb Hoskins
  • Student Affairs - Antoiwana Williams (OMSS)
  • Student Affairs - John Palmer (Office of Student Life, CARE Team member)
  • Advising  - Guy Herling (SAH Dean's Office)
  • Advising - Sharie Brunk (AAC)

In addition, the Firm Footing advising work group provided guidance for the advising tab content:

  • Jen Miskowski (Assistant to the Provost and Chair)
  • Lori Anderson (AAC)
  • Colin Belby (GEO)
  • Rick Mikat (ESS)
  • Marie Moeller (ENG)
  • Betsy Morgan (PSY)
  • Joe Johnson (DES)
  • Laurie Strangman (ECO)
  • Peter Stovall (CLS -Dean's Office)
Who can I contact regarding questions about Eagle Alert? expanding section

Questions regarding the role and purpose of the system can be directed to Sandy Grunwald (sgrunwald@uwlax.edu). Questions about the oversight of the system can be directed to Jamie Schweiger (jschweiger@uwlax.edu) in the Academic Advising Center. 

Keep entries as brief and succinct as possible while providing enough information to aid future advising interactions.


Include notes that will help the student and future advisors understand the student or the advice that you gave.

  • Encouraged student to enroll in MTH 135 because of interest in Elementary Education
  • Student took XXX out of interest even though he already has credit for YYY, understands that XXX will be counted as an elective.
  • Student should remember to take Math placement exam before registration for spring semester.

Include possible consequences of not following advice given.

  • Discussed need to take MTH 150 during the Spring semester so CHM 103 can be taken in Fall and student can be admitted to degree program before reaching 60 credits.
  • Student wants to enroll in 18 credits. Cautioned regarding heavy academic load.
  • Reminded student to check with Financial Aid Office regarding the consequences of dropping below 12 credits and no longer being an official "full-time" student.

Include notes that will facilitate future interactions with student.

  • Encouraged student to make an appointment to come see me after MCAT scores are known.
  • Student was well prepared for advising session. Had a tentative schedule already worked out.

Include referrals of a non-sensitive nature

  • Encouraged student to talk to Office of International Education regarding study abroad options during J-Term.
  • Encouraged student to email catalog description and syllabus from the course to the chair of history department about the possibility of getting general education credit as a transfer course
  • Encouraged student to make appointment with career advisor. 


No need to include.

Subjective judgments about the student (especially when they are negative).

  • I doubt student's ability to succeed in this major.

Referrals or comments of a sensitive or personal nature*.

  • Referred student to Disability Resource Services for testing. I suspect a learning disability.
  • Recommended student seek psychological assistance through the Counseling & Testing Center on campus.
  • Student diagnosed with depression.

Comments regarding student's instructors

  • Student is considering dropping PSY 444 because of a problem with the professor. 

* Noting personal issues: If a student raises a personal issue which is relevant to an advising matter under discussion, it may be appropriate to refer to such issues simply as "personal situation - referral made" or "personal situation - reduced credit load advised." If it assists you in your role to keep more specific notes about a student's personal issues, you may keep private notes for you own use.

Based on work from Seattle University & Missouri State University

The following are articles and resources from other institutions of higher education and organizations focused on student retention an success:



The purpose of the Eagle Alert Advisory Committee (EAAC) is to give feedback and insights to help improve the Eagle Alert system in relation to faculty usage, campus knowledge of the system, and most importantly student success. The EAAC is composed of representatives from several offices on campus. If you have questions or would like to share feedback for the Eagle Alert system please contact a member of the EAAC: