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Evidence based practice: supporting student transition using a blended learning approach Sarah Grain Retention Convention: What works? Student retention.

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Presentation on theme: "Evidence based practice: supporting student transition using a blended learning approach Sarah Grain Retention Convention: What works? Student retention."— Presentation transcript:

1 Evidence based practice: supporting student transition using a blended learning approach Sarah Grain Retention Convention: What works? Student retention and success, March 2010, Leeds

2 Evidence based practice …[a] solution to the problem of the relationship between research and practice because it involves the practitioners in theorising that is directly related to their work (The Open University, 2001, p.25). There is a risk that pressures for more quality may promote a narrow perspective of educational research where there is more high-quality research but more trivial or less relevant conclusions. (Harden in Pirrie, 2001, p.134) …tested, extended or replaced in some systematic way (Hargreaves, 2007, p.5)

3 Research evidence Student Transition and Retention guidelines (Cook et al, 2005) Review of Widening Participation Research: Addressing the Barriers to Participation in Higher Education (Gorard et al, 2006) Flying Start at University of Central Lancaster (Abramson undated, Cook 2009) …those students who attend Flying Start are more motivated from the outset Attrition rate for FS students is half that of UCLan as a whole.

4 HEADstart Introduce potential students to the nature and demands of study at higher education level Provide practice in relevant academic tasks Enable students to demonstrate that they are ready to progress onto a relevant higher education programme Promote academic integration Foster self awareness and thus development within applicants Provide familiarisation with the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Promote the process of completing a Personal Development Portfolio Reduce non-traditional student attrition through improving preparedness for Higher education.

5 Salmons five stage model for e-tivities (2004, p 11)

6 …learners create knowledge as they attempt to understand their experiences (Driscoll, 2000, p. 376) …a way of being [generating]…an ongoing set of attitudes (Vail, 1996, p.42).

7 Early Indications – Focus Groups I never got my GCSEs […] HEADstart was good for me … it gave me a taste of what I needed to do.…and it helped identify my Dyslexia. …because of the qualifications that I got I didnt think I would be able to go to University … HEADstart made me more nervous … it reminded me of how to do a group presentation, an essay and research everything…helped me prepare for what was ahead in the next couple of months… I didnt make the grade at GCSE or A level […] It was good to not be thrown in the deep end. It prepared us really for Education…Recommend to anyone Feeling of confidence when you start the course - some [students] said they had wished they had done HEADstart, especially mature students.

8 References Abramson M and Jones P: (undated) Empowering under-represented students to succeed in higher education: initiatives in early engagement at a post-1992 university. available from (accessed ) Cook, A ; Rushton, B.S; McCormick, S.M and D.W. Southall, D.W (2005) Guidelines for the Management of Student Transition, The STAR (Student Transition and Retention) Project [online], University of Ulster available at accessed Cook, V (2009) Still Flying Ten Years On! in Towards a New Agenda for Lifelong Learning: Access, Diversity and Participation, FACE conference 2009, Staffordshire University [online] available at accessed http://www.f-a-c-e.org.uk/conference2009.html Crabtree, H; Roberts, C and Tyler, C (2007) Understanding the Problems of Transition into Higher Education [online] available at accessed Driscoll, M. (2000), Psychology of Learning for Instruction. Allyn and Bacon: Needham Heights, MA Gorard (2002) Political Control: A way forward for Educational Research?, British Journal of Educational Studies, Vol.50, No.3, p. 378–89 Gorard S, Smith E, May H, Thomas L, Adnett N and Slack K (2006), Review of Widening Participation Research: Addressing the Barriers to Participation in Higher Education, [online] available at accessed on 11/09/08http://www.hefce.ac.uk/pubs/rdreports/2006/rd13_06/

9 References Hargreaves (2007) Teaching as a research based profession: possibilities and prospects in Hammersley, M (ed.) Educational Research and Evidence Based Practice, Milton Keynes: Open University and Sage, p HEfCE, (2009), Mission: Strategic Aims available accessed http://www.hefce.ac.uk/aboutus/mission.htm Myhill, D and Jones S (2007) What Works? Engaging in research to shape policy: The case of grammar, English Teaching: Practice and Critique, Vol 6, No 3, p [online] available at accessed http://education.waikato.ac.nz/research/files/etpc/2007v6n3art4.pdf Pirrie, A (2001) Evidence –based practice in Education: The Best Medicine? British Journal of Educational Studies, Vol 49:2, p Salmon, G (2004) E-tivities: The Key to Active Online Learning, Koogan Page: London Siemens G (2005) Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age, at accessedhttp://www.itdl.org/Journal/Jan_05/article01.htm Thomas, L (2009) Using research and evidence to improve student retention and success in Towards a New Agenda for Lifelong Learning: Access, Diversity and Participation, FACE conference 2009, Staffordshire University [online] available at accessed http://www.f-a-c-e.org.uk/conference2009.html The Open University (2001) Research Methods in Education Handbook, Masters Programme in Education, Milton Keynes: The Open University/Sage Vaill, P. B., (1996) Learning as a Way of Being, Jossey-Blass Inc: San Francisco, CA


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