Welcome to Early Alert and Starfish | BCTC

Welcome to Early Alert and Starfish

With students at the heart of the BCTC mission, Early Alert supports student access, success, and persistence by acknowledging academic progress, identifying and targeting barriers to student success, and providing an available student support network. Early Alert uses data analytic tools like Civitas Illume to proactively identify and communicate to specific students, such as those enrolled in high impact courses or with low predicted persistence scores, who may need critical wraparound services.  Early Alert also facilitates the use of Starfish across BCTC. Starfish is a tool that students can use to raise their hand for help and that student support specialists use to communicate with students about their progress.  Early Alert helps guide those communications to the right specialists and follows up to make sure students get timely information to help them be successful.

Early Alert collaborates with student services on:

  • Academic and non-academic referrals 
  • Student hand raises (Raise Your Hand in Starfish) 
  • Faculty raised flags and kudos
  • Strategic communications and outreach to specific student populations (e.g., students in high impact courses)

Early Alert Contacts

Email BCTC Early Alert: BL-EarlyAlert@kctcs.edu

Starfish for Students

Starfish provides you with a central location to connect to the people and services that can help you finish what you start – all accessible from the side navigation menu of your Starfish Home page.

Log in to your Starfish.

The navigation menu   includes access to a customizable profile and personalized channels that make it easy to schedule the dedicated time you need with your instructors, advisors, or counselors. Starfish can also help you manage the steps you need to take to stay on track and meet your goals.

Here are three great ways to get started:

  1. Set up your profilescreenshot of the dashboard
    Make it easier for your instructors and advisors to get to know you and stay in contact.
  2. Connect to people and services that can help you
    Use your personalized My Success Network and Courses channels for quick access to contact information, appointment scheduling, and course help.
  3. Stay on track
    Use the Upcoming tab to keep track of upcoming appointments, and your personalized Dashboard to see assignments, plans, and recommendations from your instructors.

Not sure what you need?
Browse the Services Catalog or use the Raise Your Hand option if you can’t find what you’re looking
for through your personalized channels.

That’s it. Simple for you. Powerful for your future.

Set up your Profileexample user photo
Begin by setting up your student profile. Your profile lets instructors and advisors know who you are and how to contact you. It also gives you control over how you wish to receive emails.

  1. Open the navigation menu and click your name, and then Profile to open your profile.

    From here, you can customize your profile by setting appointment reminders, and adding a secondary email address for receiving Starfish emails (e.g. your mobile phone). Modesto Junior College will be uploading a photo of you in the future which will match your student ID picture. As a note, you will be unable to upload a photo on your own.
    screenshot of example profile

    To have Starfish emails sent to your mobile phone (in addition to sending to your primary institutional email address):
    screenshot of example alternative email

    • Enter the email address of screenshot of the recieve notifications dialogue boxyour mobile phone in the Alternate Email field. This address will be a combination of your phone number plus carrier information. Click the more information icon for a list of common carriers and email address formats:
    • Check the Also send notifications to my alternate email address radio button.
  2. Once you have made your desired changes to your profile, click the Submit button to save your updates.

Connect to people and services that can help you

The My Success Network and Courses channels display the people and services that are available to help you succeed. Here you can find key contact information as well as links to student service web sites and online appointment scheduling.


Select Messages to display messages sent to you in Starfish. Click on any message in the list to display the full contents of that message.

screenshot of the messages menu box

My Success Network

Select My Success Network from the navigation menu to display your personalized network. This channel lists the people and resources that are available to assist you. For each person or service listed, you will find contact information, supporting websites, and, if online scheduling is enabled, a link to Schedule Appointment. If a service includes a waiting room for walk-in appointments, you can click the “Waiting Room” link to find out how many students are currently in line.

The Services that are most relevant to you are displayed first. Select Show Other Services at the bottom of the page to see additional services.

screenshot of the services menu


Select Courses from the side navigation menu to display information about courses you are enrolled in as well as contacts and available support related to each. Like the My Success Network channel, it is personalized to show the people and services specific to the courses you are taking, and gives you the ability to Schedule Appointment or Raise Your Hand related to a course.
screenshot of the courses window

  1. Click the Help icon ( ) link in the upper, right corner next to any of the courses in which you are currently enrolled.
  2. This will bring up the Raise Your screenshot of th request help windowHand form. Select the Type of help needed from the drop down menu and give specific Details on how staff can assist you.
  3. Click the Submit button to submit your request when you are finished.

Make an Appointment

  1. From the My Success Network, screenshot of the schedule optionclick the triangle beside the name of the person you want to schedule an appointment with, and then select Schedule.

    For Services where appointments are available, select Schedule for the desired service.

    Or, from the Courses channel, screenshot of schedule appointment windowselect Schedule Appointment below the contact information for the desired person or service.
  2. Select the type of appointment you want to schedule and choose a reason from the list.
    screenshot of selecting the appointment type
  3. Adjust the date range as needed to find days and times that work for your schedule, and then select a time from the list.
    screen shot of date and time selection
  4. Complete your sign up by adjusting any details, such as duration or course, where applicable, and add a description for why you want to meet.
  5. Click Confirm to finish scheduling screen shot of the final window for double checking detailsthe appointment. You will get an email with the appointment details and the appointment
    will be listed on the Upcoming tab.

Change an Appointment

On the Upcoming tab, you can view scheduled appointments and make changes. Click on an appointment to make changes to it, such as changing the location or duration, when available. You can cancel the appointment by clicking the ellipsis and selecting Cancel appointment.

screen shot of the popup window for canceling appointments

Stay on track


Your Dashboard also displays upcoming appointments as well as date-based tasks on the left to help you plan your week. The right-hand column of your Dashboard highlights items that require your attention and may include alerts related to your class work, recommended referrals to campus support offices to help you succeed, and Kudos from your instructors.


The Success Plans channel will display any customized success plans created for you by your advisor. These plans contain specific tasks with due dates. Click the View Details button associated with a plan to display a printable version of the plan.

Select Degree Planner to create, view, and/or manage your academic degree plan.

Not sure what you need?

Request Help (Raise Your Hand)

Select Raise Your Hand from the navigation menu to see information about where to go for assistance.

You will be asked to provide additional information such as the type of help you are requesting, the related course (if applicable), and a description.

screenshot of the request help window

We encourage you to make your description as detailed as possible to ensure you get the appropriate help needed. Click Submit to submit your request when done.

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I don’t see anyone listed in My Success Network?

Your specific advisors or counselors might not be assigned yet. Check back later or contact your
institution’s help desk for additional assistance.

What if I click the Starfish link and get a “You do not have access” message?

Contact your institution’s help desk for assistance with accessing the Starfish system.

What if I need more help?

For technical issues, contact us at BL-EarlyAlert@kctcs.edu. For questions regarding a flag, please contact your instructor or advisor.

Starfish provides you with ONE central location to find the people on campus who can help you succeed!

Access Starfish via My Path on our Current Students page. You can also access Starfish through Blackboard or your Student Self-Service.

  • Access your My Success Network (Assigned Advisor, Instructors, Student Success Specialist, etc.)
    1. Find people on campus who are here to help you succeed.
    2. Click on the navigation icon on the top left side of page. Click on your “My Success Network”.
  • Schedule an appointment with your assigned advisor during Priority Registration (Fall semester: October; Spring semester: March):
    1. Click on the navigation icon on the top left side of page. Click on your “My Success Network”.
    2. Find your “Academic Advisor-Assigned” under ‘Your Connections’
    3. Select the button to the right of your advisor’s name and select ‘Schedule’. Click ‘Advising’ – then select the ‘General Advising’ option. Click continue.
    4. Select your desired date and time. Click continue. Note the campus and office location.
    5. Provide appointment details for your advisor (major, etc.) then confirm appointment. You will receive a confirmation email to your KCTCS account.
    6. Note: If the ‘Schedule’ options it not available next to your advisor’s name, you can contact your assigned advisor directly by clicking ‘Call’ or ‘Email’.
  • Receive updates throughout the semester on your course progress and take action:
    1. Your instructors will weigh in on your progress throughout the semester and provide you with the steps and resources to be a successful student! Check your KCTCS email regularly for these notifications which will come from notices@starfishsolutions.com
    2. Also find these notifications in Starfish by clicking on “Messages” from the navigation icon.
  • “Raise Your Hand”
    1. From the navigation icon, click on “Raise Your Hand”.
    2. Utilize this feature if you need help in any area ranging from academic support to personal concerns.
  • Personalize! Complete your profile and intake form:
    1. From the navigation icon, click the drop down menu next to your name. You can choose “Institutional Profile” or “Intake”.
    2. Profile - upload a photo, specify an alternate email address, and select appointment reminder settings.
    3. Intake – tell us a little bit about yourself (what are your educational and career goals?)

If you have question, please feel free to contact Brandi Thomas, Early Alert/Starfish Manager at

  1. Navigate to MyPath.
    screenshot of the MyPath tile on the BCTC website
  2. Select the Student Self-Service tile.
    screenshot of student self-service tile
  3. Select the Student Center tile.
    screenshot of student center tile
  4. Select the dropdown menu under Academics. In the dropdown, select Transcript View Unofficial. Click Go.
    screenshot of the dropdown menuscreenshot of transcript view unofficial item
  5. In the new window, click View Report.
    screenshot of student self-service view
  6. In the new window, click View Report.
    screenshot of view report button
  7. This brings up your Unofficial Transcript. It shows your term GPA and cumulative GPA after each semester you enrolled in courses.
    screenshot of example unofficial transcript

If you want your current cumulative GPA, look to the Undergraduate Career Totals section below your most recently completed semester.

Login to Starfish from MyPath!

Method 1: Access Courses from the Starfish Menu

  1. In Starfish, click the Starfish Menu button in the top left corner.
    starfish menu screenshot
  2. Select Courses in the Menu that opens.
    screenshot of starfish menu with Courses selected
  3. A window will open that displays your current courses. If any grades have been posted in Blackboard, or flags that have been raised in Starfish, you will see them displayed in the Grades and Agenda tabs for the course.
    screenshot of Current Courses menu
  4. In Courses View, you can use the Soccer Ball icon to Raise Your Hand for help with that specific course.
    screenshot of the Course View menu with the Raise Your Hand button in the top right
  5. You can also Raise Your Hand for help in the Starfish menu from Step 1.
    screenshot of Rais Your Hand button in the Starfish menu

Method 2: View Messages

  1. Navigate back to the Starfish menu and select Messages.
    screenshot of the Starfish menu with the Messages option
  2. In the Messages window, set your filter and you can view any messages, flags, etc. you have received in Starfish.
    screenshot of the Messages window with the filtering function