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Engagement, Motivation and the First Year Experience: Best Practice in Course Design Sally Knipe & Gerald Wurf.

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Presentation on theme: "Engagement, Motivation and the First Year Experience: Best Practice in Course Design Sally Knipe & Gerald Wurf."— Presentation transcript:

1 Engagement, Motivation and the First Year Experience: Best Practice in Course Design Sally Knipe & Gerald Wurf

2 Format of Presentation Introduction to CSU as a regional multi-campus university Changes in course profile introduced in 2014 Discuss a research project Strategies that have been introduced to address findings from the project as well as other research regarding undergraduate students first year experience.

3 Multi-campus regional University

4 Modification of Course Profile Reviewed course profile in 2011 Based on this review several courses were phased out such as undergraduate double degrees, primary Other programs expanded such as K-12 (with expanded secondary options, EC/P)

5 Relationship between ATAR and success in teacher education degrees ◦ No specific Australian research examining ATAR & teacher education (Caldwell & Sutton, 2010) ◦ LSAY data (Marks, 2007) - strongest influence on completions was Year 12 ENTER. Palmer, Bexley & James’ (2011) Go8 report – similar conclusion ◦ ENTER accounted for ≈ 11% of the variance in university achievement scores & 70% of students with an ENTER score < 70 completed their studies (Marks, 2007)

6 First-year undergraduates ◦ Currently ≈ 40% of Year 12 students enter university ◦ Bradley et al. (2008) goal 40% of year olds with an undergraduate degree by Of these 20% will be from low SES ◦ Nationally a more academically, socially and economically diverse student population - success story ◦ Tension between increasing diversity & perceived falling status of teachers/standards – the “battered profession” (Dinham, 2013)

7 Students studying education  Nationally, around 80% of Marks’ (2007) sample of education students completed the degree within years (very high)  AUSSE (2009, 2011) data:  High course demands compared to other disciplines  Rank ‘academic challenge’ vey highly  Some of the highest scores for the number of prescribed textbooks/readings  Highest number of written assignments  Regional/metropolitan and low SES students (once admitted) have similar completion rates

8 DIISRTE, 2012, p. 33

9 Motivation, engagement & EQ The first-year experience and student engagement (e.g. Kift; Tinto) Three factor models of engagement ◦ behavioural ◦ cognitive ◦ emotional (e.g. Fredricks & McColsky, 2012) EQ - links to teacher communication, positive relationships and collaboration Martin’s (2009, 2011) motivation wheel & MES -UC

10 Motivation Wheel (Martin, 2009, 2011)

11 Hypotheses 1. ATAR scores will significantly predict student grade point average (GPA) 2. Self-report measures of emotional intelligence, and motivation/engagement will significantly add to models predicting student GPA 3. Use of a school teaching experience (PE) will enhance the overall first year experience

12 Method Explanatory sequential mixed methods or two phase design (Creswell, 2012) Psychometrically sound self-report questionnaires + focus groups Participants 110 first year BEd undergraduate students, 83 (75%) consented to release their University records & participate Initial data collection in Week 4. Focus groups were conducted at the end of 1st year

13 Assumptions & Measures Assumptions (evidence for GPA & later teaching effectiveness; appropriate & supported PE) ATAR, GPA (F=0, P=4, C=5, D=6, HD=7) MES-UC (Martin, 2011) (44 items) ◦ Booster behaviours (Adaptive) ◦ Booster thoughts (Adaptive) ◦ Mufflers (Anxiety) ◦ Guzzlers (Disengagement) SUEIT (Palmer & Stough, 2001)

14 Results: Regression model & coefficients BSE BβpSemi-partial r 2 MES-UC Booster Behaviours ATAR SUEIT Understanding Emotions NS.00

15 Focus group themes relating to engagement Social support (friends, peers, family, Facebook, lecturers, university learning support) Social stress (party culture, carer responsibilities, high demands from relationships) Authentic pedagogy/experiences (relevant content and examples, participation in the university professional experience) Alienating pedagogy/experiences (lecturer-centred teaching, academic content unrelated to teaching, highly feminised school environments, high care demands when with children) Ideal self as teacher (I always wanted to be a teacher. Altruistic identity – teachers make a difference, instrumental identity – teaching as a good job) Paradoxical self (self as teacher versus I’m not academic) Academic Readiness (prepared for university) Academic frustration (high language/literacy demands, intense academic workloads, financial costs, technology requirements, opportunity cost associated with paid employment, travel time)

16 Ideal self as teacher Because I want to be a teacher, so I’m going to do what I have to do, to be a teacher (Jemma,013). I want to be a teacher, and I’m willing to put in the hours and the work and take the criticism with the positive feedback (Lucy,014).

17 Professional Experience ….. people didn’t expect to have to study like all those kinds of subjects ….. with prac …..the nice thing about it is that it did deter some people butI found it encouraged me more …… before prac I was like, oh, I’m a bit over uni and stuff and then you go on prac and then you go, no, this is what I want to do – I want to teach (002).

18 Implications ATAR not the best predictor of achievement (GPA) Additional attributes could be important in selecting teachers especially motivation cf. Teacher Selector (UMelb) but is it more important to develop these attributes in the degree? EQ did not add to the model – limitations Strong support for the use of multi-dimensional models of student engagement (+ social)

19 First year course design (Kift, 2009) As a result of these finding the following have been implemented into undergraduate courses. Preparedness (O’Week Symposium) Finances (Access) Peer support (Mentor/Transition Coordinators) Quality teaching (Experienced Teaching Staff) Good course design (including opportunities for appropriately supported PE – first year in school/diverse placement) ‘Just-in-time’ student support Assessment for learning & timely feedback – low stakes assessment items/relevant

20 References ACER (2011). Australasian Survey of Student Engagement (AUSSE) Melbourne, Vic.: Author. Accessed 27 June 2011 from: Bradley, D., Noonan, P., Nugent, H., & Scales, B. (2008). Review of Australian higher education: Final report. Canberra: Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. Caldwell, B., & Sutton, D. (2010). Review of teacher education and induction. First report - full report. Retrieved from Education Queensland Creswell, J. W. (2012). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research (4 th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson. Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIISRTE). (2012). Undergraduate Applications, Offers and Acceptances, Canberra: Author Dinham, S. (2013). The quality teaching movement in Australia encounters difficult terrain: A personal perspective. Australian Journal of Education, 57(2), Fredricks, J. A. & McColskey, W. (2012). The measurement of student engagement: A comparative analysis of various methods and student self-report instruments. In S. L. Christenson, A. L. Reschly, & C. Wylie (Eds.), Handbook of research on student engagement pp New York, NY: Springer. Kift, S. (2009). Articulating transition pedagogy to scaffold and to enhance the first year student learning experience in Australian higher education: Final report, Australian Learning and Teaching Council. Retrieved 25 November 2010 from year-learning-experience-kift-2009http://www.altc.edu.au/resource-first- year-learning-experience-kift-2009 Knipe, S. (2012). Crossing the Primary and Secondary School Divide in Teacher Preparation. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 37(5). Marks, G. N. (2007). Completing university: Characteristics and outcomes of completing and non-completing students. (LSAY Research Report No. 51). Melbourne: ACER. Martin, A. J. (2009). Motivation and engagement across the academic life span: A developmental construct validity study of elementary school, high school, and university/college students. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 69(5), DOI: / Martin, A. J. (2011). The motivation and engagement scale university/college. Sydney, NSW: Lifelong Achievement Group. Palmer, N., Bexley, E., & James, R. (2011). Selection and Participation in Higher Education: University Selection in Support of Student Success and Diversity of Participation. Melbourne: Centre for the Study of Higher Education. Palmer, B. R., & Stough, C. (2001). The Swinburne University Emotional Intelligence Test technical manual. Melbourne, Vic: Swinburne University of Technology. Wurf, G., & Croft-Piggin, L. (Forthcoming). Predicting the academic achievement of first year, pre-service teachers: The role of engagement, motivation, ATAR and emotional intelligence. Asia-Pacific Journal of Teacher Education.


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