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SYMPOSIUM Adult Learner Pathways to Tertiary Education Southbank Campus, Griffith University Wednesday, 25 August 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "SYMPOSIUM Adult Learner Pathways to Tertiary Education Southbank Campus, Griffith University Wednesday, 25 August 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 SYMPOSIUM Adult Learner Pathways to Tertiary Education Southbank Campus, Griffith University Wednesday, 25 August 2010

2 “An educational system must be judged by the opportunities it provides for its citizens, how these opportunities are distributed and the way they support social mobility. An educational system must also be judged by the extent to which it engages its citizens in learning, particularly the most socially disadvantaged, so they can take advantage of these opportunities.” Speech to National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education forum, UniSA, by Dr Leesa Wheelahan (2009)

3 Introduction Mary Kelly Equity Director, QUT

4 Project Overview Suzanne Wilkinson Principal Advisor Student Equity Services Griffith University

5 TAFE partners BNIT TAFE Open Learning SBIT MSIT GCIT TAFE partners BNIT TAFE Open Learning SBIT MSIT GCIT THE PROJECT Senior Secondary College partners Coorparoo Secondary College Kingston College Eagleby Learning Centre Senior Secondary College partners Coorparoo Secondary College Kingston College Eagleby Learning Centre Queensland University of Technology Griffith University DET Students 1054 - Sem 2, 2009 1414 - Sem1, 2010 1304 - Sem 2, 2010 Students 1054 - Sem 2, 2009 1414 - Sem1, 2010 1304 - Sem 2, 2010 DEEWR NCSEHE $1.154M

6 School vs Adult Learner… not a ‘one-size, fits all’ approach School to University (linear, uni as a fixed destination, consistent approach to transition support): TAFE/SS College to Uni (more fluid, ‘going back & going forward’, more complex transition support?): School retention Year 12TransitionUni School exit Re/entry ATP/Ext Snr & other life priorities Reconstruction of identity & learning with reengagement in education Uni

7 It can work - Logan Tertiary Access Program Longitudinal data (1989-2004): …a 93% average success rate in transitioning to University Features: Encouragement and affirmation Improved educational attainment Preparation – academic, careers, disciplinary links Access – pathways, financial assistance etc Social connection and relationships Joined-up services Flexibility and customisation …increased confidence, self-esteem & self-direction

8 Educational Outreach Good Practice Assembling resources Engaging learners Working together Building confidence People-richRecognition of difference CollaborationCommunication and information Financial support and/or incentives Enhanced academic curriculum Cohort-basedFamiliarisation/ site experiences Early, long-term, sustained Research-driven The Design and Evaluation Matrix for Outreach (DEMO), Gale et al. (2010)

9 Key project activities and outputs...  Project establishment (2009):  project reference & management groups  partnership statement and project operational plan  project staff recruitment (3)  consultation with key stakeholders  community awareness campaign  project website (  Adult learner support (Semester 2, 2009 - ongoing):  presentations (awareness)  bursaries (affordability)  student ambassadors & mentoring (aspirations)  careers support – careers workshops, hotline, counselling, Future Options Cafes (aspirations)  institutional learning support allocations (achievement)  student referrals –admissions etc (access)  Research (2010/2011):  literature review  adult learner survey/focus groups/DET & EQ data/other  collaborative process (NCSEHE)

10 Preliminary Findings Sandie Bridgland Project Manager Adult Learner Social Inclusion Project

11  346 adult learners participated (25%)  Ages ranged from 16 – 71 years with  Half aged 16 – 22 years  59% females & 41% males Survey Demographics

12  5% refugees  12% NESB  2% Indigenous Australians  12% students with a disability  7% sole parents Equity Groups represented

13 32% had completed Year 10 21% had completed Year 11 and 21% had completed Year 12 Total of 73% completed Years 10, 11 or 12 13% had completed an Apprenticeship or TAFE Certificate or Diploma Prior education levels achieved

14 86% had individual income, of these 53% earned under $30,000 in 2008/09 58% receive income support 40% have difficulty paying fees 9% have no home internet 48% first in family to commence TAFE/VET 46% would be first in family to go to uni Low SES indicators

15 Get into university, 81% Desire for personal accomplishment, 57% Get my Year 12 Certificate, 49% Prove I can do it, 42% Develop new job skills, 40% Top 5 motivations for enrolment

16 Feelings before starting the program DisagreeNeutralAgree I was excited and positive about learning again5.8%16.2%78.1% I was nervous and worried about whether I had made the right decision 37.3%21.1%41.6% I was prepared for the challenge of studying6.1%20.8%73.1% I was excited to meet new people9.0%36.4%54.7% Attitudes about returning to study

17 Attitude towards education in generalDisagreeNeutralAgree I have a positive attitude towards learning2.9%11.0%86.1% I had a bad experience of learning at high school 20.8%17.3%61.9% I don't like to study53.5%29.2%17.4% Attitudes about education in general

18 Adjustment to the TAFE/Secondary College and the Program DisagreeNeutralAgree I feel that I am adjusting/have adjusted well to being a student again 5.2%19.9%74.8% I feel that I fit in well in the program3.5%23.1%73.4% I am making/have made friends in the program7.8%22.8%69.4% I am pleased that I enrolled in to this program1.2%7.2%91.7% I am managing my time well20.0%31.5%48.6% I am adjusting to study demands11.3%24.3%64.5% I am anxious about failing18.2%22.3%59.6% Adjusting to study

19 Expectations about the program DisagreeNeutralAgree The program is easier than I expected28.6%48.3%23.1% The amount of work I have to do is more than I expected25.7%38.7%35.5% The amount of time I need to spend on study is more than I expected 24.6%33.2%42.2% The program is more enjoyable than I expected (it's better than school) 4.1%21.7%74.3% Overall, the program has met my expectations2.6%20.2%77.2% Expectations

20 Coursework engagement DisagreeNeutralAgree I am enjoying what I'm learning2.3%15.3%82.3% I find it difficult to get myself motivated to study38.7%26.6%34.6% I read the suggested material in preparation for class11.8%32.1%56.1% I have a strong desire to do well in this program1.2%6.4%92.5% I feel comfortable asking questions in class11.6%22.3%66.2% My classmates seem to find the program a lot easier than I do 34.9%44.5%20.6%

21 “They boost my confidence as a person by showing me a little respect, so they get the same back.” “More like a mentor and a friend, when I am feeling stressed and they are very understanding.” “They are interested in the ways that life experiences have affected your educational abilities and attempt to guide you through this new process.” Teacher support

22 Personal issues during the program Not an Issue Slightly/ Somewhat an Issue Large/ Extreme Issue Not smart enough (54.6%)45.4%42.8%11.8% Not confident enough (65.4%)34.7%48.0%17.4% Lack of motivation (63.5%)36.4%44.2%19.3% Lack of family/ friend/ partner support (32.1%)67.9%23.7%8.4% Struggle with studying (66.5%)33.5%51.7%14.8% Struggle with using computers (26.3%)73.7%21.1%5.2% Struggle with using the internet (18.4%)81.5%15.3%3.1% Struggle with maths (53.5%)46.5%36.4%17.1% Struggle with reading and writing (33.5%)66.5%27.1%6.4%

23 Project activitiesTotals $250 Encouragement Bursary (annual)293 so far Learning Support funds to each partner institution$20,000 pa Project Officer Presentations on topics such as admissions, scholarships, Centrelink benefits, budgeting, uni myth-busting, HECS fees, support services) Student Ambassador Uni Life Presentations Futures Cafes – course info and questions answered Career Counselling (1 on 1) Careers Exploration Workshops QTAC Presentations Awareness of Tertiary Events Project Website 74 46 15 50 approx. 5 1 for EQ partners Other activities  Community awareness raising  Staff awareness raising  Practitioner networking  Project activity planning sessions

24 “The fact that people come from the universities is extremely helpful.” “The additional learning support classes are great. We can chat to get clear on subject content or get feedback on assignments.” “Helped me to understand prerequisites and understand responses from the unis.” “The teachers bring in people from the universities and QTAC to discuss the options we have.” “They help a lot with financial issues.” Student Feedback from Survey 1 - Project activities

25 “I like the feeling that I am getting somewhere academically, when I get a good result in something I feel good all week and my family and partner are proud of me, not sure if this is relevant but my eyes watered as I typed the part about my family being proud of me.” “I love the teachers and how they’re so laid back and it is so easy to ask questions. They teach you to their very best ability and you can tell how much they love doing what they are doing, which makes you love it even more.” Student Feedback from Survey 1 – Learning experiences

26 The 2 generic pathways (ATP and Ext Snr) are of good quality and are reasonably accessible with mostly satisfied clients  Supply vs demand  Greater than 50% are LSES  Learning support needs  Public policy issues Preliminary findings and policy issues

27 Panel Pam Lyon – Gold Coast Institute of TAFE Helen Wilkie – Southbank Institute of Technology Con Kontos – Coorparoo Secondary College

28 An adult learner perspective Karin Jansma Student & Student Ambassador Griffith University

29 Questions

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