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Presentation Overview

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Presentation on theme: "Presentation Overview"— Presentation transcript:

1 What works? Student Retention and Success Dr Helen May Professor Liz Thomas

2 Presentation Overview
Overview of projects and key findings Emerging theoretical model Common outcomes and emerging core principles of effective practice Conclusions Next Steps

3 Projects Overview What works? Study advice and personal development
Peer Mentoring HE Retention and Engagement Student adviser/ personal tutor Belonging and intimacy What works? Effects of student integration Dispositions to learn Study advice and personal development

4 Pathways to success: The value of peer mentoring in enhancing student transition to university
Universities of Aston, Bangor, Liverpool Hope, London Metropolitan, Oxford Brookes, Sheffield, York University Canada and Oslo University College, Norway.  Focus/hypothesis: Peer mentoring improves social and academic belonging (for mentors and mentees), which improves retention, progression and achievement. Findings: Mentoring creates positive impacts (greater for mentors) particularly in relation to learning experience and inter-personal relations. Evaluation of different forms of peer mentoring.

5 HERE – Higher Education Retention and Engagement
Universities of Nottingham Trent, Bournemouth and Bradford Focus: Student doubters who stay in HE and programmes with excellent rates of retention. Findings: Students consider leaving for course related reasons. Students stay for more mixed reasons: support from friends and family, future goals or employment aspirations, personal determination or other characteristics, adapting to course/university and lack of other options. What makes people doubt is not the same what makes them want to stay. Evaluation of transition, social support and developing opportunities to feel confident early in the course.

6 A comparative evaluation of the roles of student advisor and personal tutor
Anglia Ruskin University and two FE partners Focus: Where students prefer to seek help from for different issues. Findings: Study concerns - personal tutors (60%) and other university services; feeling low - family and friends (81%); thinking about leaving HE - friends and family (46%), personal tutor (43%) and student advisors (40%). Evaluation of the relationships with and roles of personal tutors and student advisors. Are friends and families equipped to adequately support students? Orientation integrated into academic provision More structured and engaging personal tutoring Same small groups throughout the year

7 An examination of the effects of student integration on non-completion
Universities of Sunderland, Hull and Newcastle Focus: The effects of student integration on non-completion, particularly in relation to mature and/or part-time learners, engineering students and local, stay at home students. Findings: Local students have achievement but not affiliation orientation. Focus on academic studies but look elsewhere for social and pastoral support. Need to promote integration via the academic experience. Evaluation of integrated orientation, structured and engaging personal tutoring and small groups. Orientation integrated into academic provision More structured and engaging personal tutoring Same small groups throughout the year

8 Comparing and evaluating the impact of study advice and personal development on student retention
Universities of Reading and Oxford Brookes Focus: to compare and evaluate the impact of academic and pastoral support systems based centrally (optional) or within the discipline (interventionist). Findings: Monitoring of student engagement (attendance and marks) has an impact upon retention rates. Prior qualifications (in science) has been a successful indicator for identifying students ‘at risk’. Importance of proactive role of personal tutors and other staff to signpost support. Evaluation of role of study skills support/advice and personal tutor and of interventionist /optional services. Looking at role of measuring and monitoring engagement Identifying at risk students Role of study skills support/advice and of personal tutor Characteristics of personal tutor /study adviser

9 Dispositions to Stay: the support and evaluation of retention strategies using the Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory Universities of Northumbria, Bedfordshire, Manchester with Bristol and Glyndwr. Focus: Using ELLI as a diagnostic tool, to identify whether particular learning dispositions place students at risk of withdrawing. Findings: Positive correlations found between 1st year student marks and dispositions of ‘strategic awareness’, ‘critical curiosity’ and ‘changing and learning’. Few significant differences found between social groups, although some gender, subject, social class, international differences. Evaluation of the relationship between learning dispositions and success and of the ELLI tool. Starting point = existing literature that suggests that students’ dispositions to learn have an impact on their experience of HE and eventual outcomes. ELLI – as diagnostic tool Taking quantitative and qualitative approach 7 dimensions of learning Strategic awareness – extent to which students are aware of different approaches, and can plan their approach and time or give an explanation for taking a particular approach Critical curiosity – extent to which students want to ask questions and get below the surface rather than accept what they are told Changing and learning – extent to which students see themselves as growing and developing as learners – expanding their skills

10 Belonging and intimacy factors in the retention of students
University of Leicester Focus: evaluating the importance of a students’ sense of integration. Findings: have found combination of social, academic and environmental (facilities, accommodation) factors contribute to sense of belonging. Importance of personal and academic relationships and facilities/events. Evaluation of the factors that contribute to students’ integration and belonging. Strong significant Survey considering - settling in factors; attitudes; choice; sense of belonging, satisfaction. Social emerges as more key factor.

11 Building a theoretical model

12 Key principles underpin everyday practices and interventions
Academic system Social system Organisational system Professional services system Student relations, Student engagement & belonging dispositions & capacities “What students do during college counts more for what they learn and whether they will persist in college than who they are or even where they go to college.” (Kuh et al 2005, p. 8) Pre-entry In HE Beyond HE

13 Common outcomes and principles of effective practice

14 Common outcomes to improve student retention and success
To build enduring and meaningful relationships with staff and peers. To better understand students as individuals. To build students’ capacity (knowledge, skill or resilience). To ensure staff/student expectations are matched and realistic. To promote a shared responsibility amongst staff and peers. To engender a sense of belonging. To provide a range of services to students. To maintain communication and promote dialogue with students.

15 Emerging core principles of effective practice
Student engagement and belonging Proactive Inclusive Accessible Flexible Transparent Multi-pronged Ongoing Prompt Multi-pronged: Addressing multiple aspects of student experience; range of interventions

16 Conclusions Engage students across the lifecycle
Work across different institutional systems Ensure everyday practices and retention interventions are informed by core principles Recognise the importance of peer /staff relationships Co-ordinate the student learning experience Promote a shared responsibility for retention Be proactive to engage all students.

17 Next steps Ongoing analysis of project findings
Develop practical outputs for the sector Dissemination Seminar series Briefing papers Conferences Community of interest Final conference planned in 2012. exploring relationship between practice/policy

18 For further information, please contact: Dr Helen May helen
For further information, please contact: Dr Helen May Professor Liz Thomas

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