We all want to feel connected. We believe harnessing technology to create a platform that strengthens our ability to be our authentic selves whether we are learning, serving or working, contributes to our sense of connection with ourselves, others and our community at large.
CalState S4 is CSU’s integrated web application that provides a user-friendly interface to manage students' off-campus academic learning experiences, such as service learning, academic internships, undergraduate research and professional field placements. Its flexibility allows for sustainable partnerships and processes that promote high-quality, off-campus learning experiences that contribute to the common good. With an informed focus on supporting student success and safety, CalState S4’s consortium approach includes collecting key data and strengthening relationships that ultimately promote a culture of outreach and connection. To see a list of member campuses, visit our network and look for the icon.
The features of CalState S4 are efficient, streamlined and allow the CSU Center for Community Engagement and the S4 consortia of campuses to more accurately assess student and community impact.
Retain and make available information about the organization, including requirements of service, status of the site, and contact information.
Tailor multiple risk and program form templates, or create something from scratch.
Enable students to digitally log their hours via their placement record and provide partners a secure, digital process to review and approve hours.
Centrally manage students’ co-curricular opportunities and off-campus academic learning experiences in community engagement, academic internships and professional field placements.
Collect reliable and accurate data about off-campus academic learning activities. Assess impact on student success and inform future program and campus directions.
Organizations interested in partnering with the CSU can access CalState S4 to provide information about off-campus learning opportunities they would like to make available to CSU students. The easy to use online intake form will capture organizational data, information about the opportunity available and site safety requirements. Campus program staff will reach out to the organization to discuss the potential partnership.
S4 also supports inter- and intra-campus collaborations. Programs and disciplines in the CSU system that might not have been collaborating or sharing information about their programming are now talking to each other with greater regularity. Collegiality and communication are greatly enhanced.
CalState S4 provides accurate and timely data on community-based high-impact learning experiences which research shows positively increases retention and graduation rates.
S4 makes it easy to track student placement information, while also learning about our community partners to create efficiencies, and successful collaborations.
The reporting download feature allows for more extensive analysis to occur at the campus and system level.
CalState S4 effectively uses technology to integrate equity and inclusivity approaches through the use of language and training designed to change institutional culture and increase understanding amongst our users. We provide asset-based language and training about these features in S4 as a way to encourage our users to name and address potential biases. The S4 team aims to support our consortium members in creating more inclusive campus and community environments.
CalState S4 greatly strengthens our risk management & risk reduction effort. Connectivity means that we aren’t just tracking student success, but that we are even more effective in tracking student safety.
In the event of an emergency, CalState S4 allows campuses and the system office to have information about where and when students are serving at their fingertips, thus providing campus personnel with fast and accurate information when they need it most. Through S4 students can be contacted directly to share updates or instructions, at a moments notice, to keep students safe and informed.
As a one stop shop, CalState S4 now offers the ability to capture multiple e-signatures on various types of placement forms. This feature not only allows for easy cooperation among users, but it also saves them time. Program staff have found that university-agency agreements that would typically take 3-6 months to be executed, are being reviewed, signed and finalized in less than 48 hours. S4's web interface enables students to quickly and easily log their hours and sign placement forms using their smart phones.
The time required to process and finalize a university-agency agreement has decreased by 83% for the majority of our campuses, allowing program staff to spend time where it matters most - building relationships and establishing partnerships.