Class Activity: SMART Goal-Setting Retention Exercise

Document created by Cari Goldfine Expert on Aug 15, 2016Last modified by Bethany Gordon on Sep 22, 2016
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This retention exercise, created by John Gardner and Betsy Barefoot, was designed to highlight a retention strategy in relation to the transition to college and to help students persist in the first year. 


SMART Goal Setting

Ask students to pick a goal—either short-term or long-term—and to use the SMART template below to make their goal even more attainable. Students who are skilled at setting and attaining goals are more likely to persist in college.


Give the following instructions: Write a short-term or long-term personal goal that is related to your college experience. Use the SMART method to further develop your goal.

S   How can you make this goal more Specific?

M   How will you Measure whether you have attained this goal at a high level?

A   How do you know that there is a reasonable chance you can Attain this goal?

R   How is this goal Relevant to your interests and broader sense of life purpose?

T     What is your Time period for achieving this goal?