We are aware that the freedom and flexibility of online learning comes with its own specific challenges, in particular as regards self-organization and motivation. As a result, we have developed and are continuing to monitor and improve a set of services designed to support our students in their studies and to empower them to become – if they aren’t already! – successful online and offline learners.
The Help Desk is at the heart of our student support services. Students can contact the Help Desk via email or through Kiron Campus, our study platform. The Help Desk also provides answers to various program-specific questions, from admissions to technical support to questions regarding partner universities. Moreover, we have expanded our question database and improved standard responses to guarantee more consistent quality.
The Student Forum is an online platform where Kiron students, volunteers and staff all interact to create an online community and support system for our students all around the world. This feature is only available to Kiron students. The forum has various channels, which range from updates on new Kiron features, study track specific sections and general areas for discussion. Students can also post questions and have discussions with fellow students and more experienced student forum volunteers who, as Kiron students themselves, take on the role of moderators to offer effective peer support. The chat function, which encourages interaction between our students and Kiron employees, is also of particular importance. Moreover, students can team up with study groups in the forum to support each other in course-specific issues. In addition, invitations are posted to any local events that may be taking place in the student’s city. The forum also serves as a tool to provide feedback to Kiron, connect with people locally and meet fellow learners and Kiron students online or offline. The Kiron Student Forum is a two-way stream of information between Kiron’s students and staff, facilitating the close contact we maintain with our students.
The buddy program helps Kiron students to connect with locals both online and offline as equal partners. A buddy can support a Kiron student in his or her studies and receive valuable insights into the world of a Kiron student, including the innovative online courses (MOOCs). The primary focus of the program is to increase study motivation and success – ideally for both partners – and at the same time to facilitate an exchange between the Kiron student and the local community. Core elements of the program are goal-setting, studying together and/or regular exchange about content and organizational matters of studying with Kiron and studying at a university. The program stretches over a period of 12 weeks and can be extended if both partners agree. The weekly time commitment is 1-2 hours.
Learn more about the Program and how to become a buddy here!
Kiron Integrated Student Service Centers
Our Kiron Integrated Student Service Centers are scalable and localized offline communities that allow students to access and engage in Kiron and Kiron partner services and to become part of a larger community. Ideally, we envision our students at the center of a community built in collaboration with members of the local community, partners and Kironistas. Together, the members of this community integrate offline and online experiences and services, both promoting and enhancing Kiron student activity and success.
The Kiron Counseling Service supports students who are dealing with personal challenges or stressful situations during their studies. Our team of professional counselors offers free and confidential counseling in several languages via video chat, email or (if possible) in person (this option is currently available in Berlin and Hamburg, Germany). We offer up to five counseling sessions and, if necessary, try to find long-term support services, such as psychotherapy, for our students.
In order to help students successfully manage their studies and/or prepare for the German job market, Kiron offers two structured mentoring programs to students based in Germany. Each of these programs pairs a Kiron student with an experienced professional from a company based in Germany.
Online Study Mentoring
Online learning can be challenging at times. Our Online Study Mentoring, offered in cooperation with Volunteer Vision, supports students in achieving their personal and academic goals. Among other things, the program teaches organizing skills, goal-setting strategies and self-motivation techniques. The 10 mentoring sessions are held via video chat on an online mentoring platform over the course of approximately 10 weeks.
Offline Career Mentoring
In order to prepare our students for the German job market and identify their professional skills and talents, Kiron and its partner ROCK YOUR COMPANY! offer a Career Mentoring program in selected German cities. As part of this program, the mentor and student meet regularly offline over the course of six months. They discuss personal and career-related topics and the mentor helps the student develop an understanding of the job market, occupational profiles and work culture in Germany.
Learn how companies can support our students by acting as corporate mentors here!
Student Guidance & Communications
Student Guidance & Communications at Kiron seeks to provide (prospective) students with various guidance measures at all stages of their studies: Student Guidance provides information and supports student orientation before and during the beginning of studies in order to help students make informed and self-determined decisions about studying with Kiron and choosing a study track. For this purpose, in the spring of 2017, Kiron is launching the Student Navigator, an online study-orientation and self-assessment tool. In addition, Kiron is continuing to improve its onboarding procedures and even produces its own video courses on how to make the most of studying online. During their studies, Kiron students can seek advice regarding enrolling in courses and creating curricula. Towards the end of their Kiron studies, students receive personal guidance counseling that focuses on preparing them to apply to partner universities as well as supporting them to ensure that these universities recognize the modules they have completed with Kiron.