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Student Success Programs Introduces CircleIn

Hannah Reel reporter

With new 21st-century technology advancement, universities have begun to take advantage of this ever-changing world. PSU has decided to take up this opportunity as well in the form of a new NSF-backed, digital studying platform called CircleIn.

“The CircleIn company reached out to me with information this summer,” said Heather Eckstein, director of Student Success Programs. “I found it very intriguing and started looking more into the application. I sent the information over to Dr. Smith, who is the Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs. He thought it sounded interesting and then that information was sent to the Enrollment Management Council Retention. They, as well, found the application to be quite intriguing. Particularly for the fact that the link of CircleIn can be connected to Canvas using single-sign-on.”

According to the CircleIn website, CircleIn is an all-in-one study platform. That is used to help classmates gather to study, share skills, help with difficult problems, build better study habits, and push each other to succeed. It can be downloaded to laptops, iPads, tablets, and smartphones from the CircleIn website, Canvas, Apple Store, or Google Play.

“Sometime this mid-summer, CircleIn was implemented at Pittsburg State and the Honors Program students were the first to test out CircleIn,” Eckstein said. “This semester is a pilot semester, which means we are trying it out for this semester and depending on the results of the students will decide whether it will continue.”

Once CircleIn is downloaded, students’ course schedules will be shown with those classes that use the application. Students can create video study rooms, keep track of class feed, ask questions to students, create flashcards, share notes, share a resource, chat with other students in your class, create the workflow for creating assigned tasks, etc.

“I have not heard of CircleIn from any of my professors; however, it sounds like a great idea,” said Emma Scott, a freshman majoring in elementary education. “I think that it will be a great benefit and easier for students to use, especially with Covid right now. I do not have a lot of time from going in between classes to work to different events. The app will allow me to be able to meet up with other students in my class virtually within my busy schedule. In the big scheme of life, it will truly help. CircleIn should be more publicized by professors on campus, put it on YouTube, emails, flyers, and university social media accounts.”

Liam Guerrero, a junior majoring in History, had a different opinion. 

“I do not believe the CircleIn app will really be used by students,” Guerrero said. “Just from when I started going to school here to now, I can definitely tell students are less active as far as wanting to do things in groups. Although, the students who will use it will get more out of it. It needs to have more awareness just because it is a mobile app doesn’t necessarily help for it to spread around with students. Our generation is a lot less social and tends to just do their own thing to get it done quicker.”

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