Starfish FAQ

Starfish is an online student success system that provides a comprehensive view of student interactions campus-wide. This service, available to students, faculty, academic advisors, and student support staff, streamlines workflow to provide the best service for students while increasing the ability for instructors and advisors to provide feedback or react to student needs.


Starfish offers students a service to help them achieve success in their classes. It also provides access to a network of faculty and staff generated from their course history, where they can see contact information or schedule meetings.

Starfish navigation menu for students
How do I sign up for TXT notifications?
  1. Login to Starfish
  2. Click on the “hamburger” Menu on the lefthand side of the window
  3. Click on your name
  4. Choose “Profile”
    Navigation menu with Profile and Logout expanded
  5. Enter your SMS email address in the Alternate Email field
  6. Click the little smartphone icon to the right of that to see how to format an email address from your mobile phone #.’
Alternate Email field with the smartphone icon
How do I schedule an appointment with my advisor?
  1. Login to Starfish
  2. Click on the “hamburger” Menu left-hand hand side of the window
  3. Choose “My Success Network”
  4. Click on the drop down arrow next to the appropriate faculty member
  5. Select “Schedule”
    You may need to click in the end date box to find available appointments:
    The Schedule screen with the End Date circled in red
What's Raise Your Hand?
  • This allows students to send in questions when they need help. If a student requires help but doesn’t know where to start, they can send in a question to their adviser or the instructor of a class. Students can ask for assistance with other matters as well.
The Raise Your Hand dialogue
What's My Success Network?
  •  This compiles all the instructors that the student has taken a class with, along with the Academic Advisor, into the student’s network. Here, students can get contact information or schedule a meeting if the instructor has made online scheduling an option.
Navigation with My Success Network Highlighted
Instructors and Advisors

For instructors, Starfish provides a streamlined process of contacting and assisting students. You can quickly send text messages and emails to students, depending on the student’s notification preferences. with Starfish, instructors can be sent Raise Your Hand messages from students, allowing instructors to quickly provide feedback or address a student’s problem outside of the classroom. In addition to this, Starfish has a flag and kudos system, where an instructor can inform the student on areas that they need to improve on or congratulate a student for their performance in the course.

For advisors, Starfish provides detailed information of the advisees’ educational career. An advisor can view student data such as:

  • GPA
  • Credits
  • Major(s)
  • Minor(s)
  • Pell Grant Eligibility
  • First Generational
  • ACT/SAT scores
  • High School GPA
  • Course History
  • Grade History
Why should I set up Office Hours, and how?

Starfish provides a simple and efficient way for people on campus to schedule time with one another; whether that time is face-to-face, over the phone, or even online. All you have to do to get up and running in Starfish is setup your office hours, which lets people know when you will be available during the term. Then others on campus will be able to schedule appointments with you electronically.
Once you’ve signed up, your office hours will automatically appear on your OWU BishopApps Calendar. You may also elect to receive email notifications from Starfish informing you about your upcoming meetings. Each notice will include the reason for the visit, the person’s picture if available, and a link to their profile.
A well-connected campus is a better campus.

Learn how to add Office Hours here.

How student schedule an appointment with you (instructions you can provide to them)

  1. Login to Starfish
  2. Click on the “hamburger” Menu on the left hand side of the window
  3. Choose “My Success Network”
  4. Click on the drop down arrow next to the appropriate faculty member
  5. Select “Schedule”
    You may need to click in the end date box to find available appointments:
    The Schedule screen with the End Date circled in red

How do I Raise a Flag about a student?
  • Click on the “hamburger” Menu on the left hand side of the window
  • Select “Students”
  • In the “Connection” drop down box, select a list of students
    • “All My Students”  lists all students with records you can access
    • “Instructor” lists all students enrolled in one of your courses this semester
    • “Academic Advisor” lists your advisees
    • Select a particular course name for a list of students in that course
  • Click on a student’s name / picture to bring up that student’s record.  You’ll note that you have access to more information for your advisees than for students enrolled in your courses who are not your advisees
    • Click on the “’Flag” button to input a concern
      Flag Rules for instructors and advisors (found by clicking your name in the navigation menu, then Email Notifications, and scrolling to the bottom)
    • You can also click on “Kudos” to send positive feedback to a student
    • Select the type of flag you’d like to raise. 
    • NOTE:  the blue box will tell you who will receive notice of each action.  Some actions are copied to students; you’ll want to know if you are sending information to the student or not.  Notices of actions are sent via e-mail.
    • Click “Save” to distribute the action
    • You can view a list of this student’s current instructors & advisor on the “Network” tab
    • You can view this student’s current schedule on the “Courses” tab
    • You can see some of the other flags / kudos that have been entered for this student in the “Notes” tab
    • To close the student’s box, click on the white X above the student’s picture
  • Click on “logout” in the upper right corner of the screen to end the session
How do I clear a flag?

Just click on the flag icon and select “Clear”.

Class Attendance and Performance Surveys

In week 4 of a semester, teaching faculty are asked to provide information about students in their courses who are showing early signs of academic risk. At that point in the semester, grades do not provide a complete picture of the student’s academic performance. However, we can best direct students to appropriate resources if we have early notification of potential problems.

You will receive a message from the Starfish system ( with instructions about how to make these reports. You are asked to identify students who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • the student has missed two or more class periods
  • the student has earned a grade below C- on homework, quizzes, tests or other assignments
  • the student has failed to complete one or more assignments
  • the student is already in jeopardy of failing the course

Once you have identified students with an academic risk, Starfish will generate an automatic message to those students and their academic advisors. You will be able to enter comments in the Starfish system, and those comments will be included in the e-mail messages. Academic advisors will be asked to contact the students and arrange meetings to review academic expectations. In addition, staff members in Student Affairs are tracking students who come to their attention for risk factors, and will be consulted about the students identified by this process. Most important, the impact of all intervention efforts will be assessed and used by the Academic Status Committee to build a general strategy for supporting students at risk for retention.

The Starfish surveys will only accept responses for a short period of time.

What's it look like? (Screenshots)