Imagine there’s a freshman at Illinois State named Jane, and she’s struggling. Her grades are slipping, she’s skipping class, and she’s thinking about not coming back for her sophomore year, Stateside reports. Now imagine that her academic adviser gets automatically notified when Jane’s grades start to slide, or when she’s missed a bunch of classes. The adviser pulls up Jane’s up-to-date records and meets with her to get her back on track. Before long, Jane is registering for her next semester on her iPhone, with the help of custom course recommendations based on what other students like her have taken....

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