Increasingly, research shows that sense of belonging is a critical factor in student success and persistence, and that name mispronunciation is a frequent and pervasive way in which students often are or feel alienated. 

The California Virtual Campus – Online Education Initiative (CVC-OEI) recently partnered with NameCoach Inc., a provider of software designed to enable respectful and inclusive interactions within campus communities. The NameCoach software embeds audio pronunciations and phonetic spellings of names, as well as other information important to students’ sense of self, such as gender pronouns, into online systems that students, faculty, and staff can use. 

Through its NameCoach partnership, the CVC-OEI can help alleviate potential student alienation, particularly with at-risk populations and first-generation college students. The partnership makes NameCoach a key component of the CVC-OEI’s suite of support tools made available to the 56 colleges in the consortium. 

Colleges not in the CVC-OEI Consortium may purchase NameCoach through the Foundation for California Community Colleges at aggregate pricing. For more information, visit the Foundation’s website.

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