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Elesig Webinar 20 May 09
 

Elesig Webinar 20 May 09

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Slides for use in ELESIG webinar, 20 May 2009

Slides for use in ELESIG webinar, 20 May 2009

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Elesig Webinar 20 May 09 Elesig Webinar 20 May 09 Presentation Transcript

  • Supporting Diverse Learners – What do we know? Becka Currant Head of Learner Development and Student Engagement
  • Aims of Discussion:
    • Introduce participants to different types of pre-entry online support available
    • Identify what activities can be used to engage students in the pre-enrolment process
    • Offer an opportunity to discuss what approach may be appropriate for their students
  • Areas of Focus
    • What do we know about the student experience?
    • Expectations of modern students
    • Meeting those needs
    • Examples of good practice
  • Discussion Point 1
    • What ‘transition’ means to different individuals?
    • What does ‘transition’ mean to you?
    • What have you done to address issues of student transition and engagement?
    • What impact has this had?
    • Transition is a key issue with regard to the First Year Experience (Tinto, 1987, 1993; Pitkethly & Prosser, 2001; Longden and Yorke, 2008; the STAR project, 2008)
    • Transition starts before students arrive – from the moment they think about applying
    • Transition continues throughout their University lives – between semesters, modules, concepts, years/stages and upon exit
    Transition
  • Student Life Cycle Model Layer et al, 2002 Better preparation Fair admissions First steps in HE Flexible progression Student success
  • Transitions Life Cycle Model Currant, 2009 Clear expectations Explicit requirements Support during first year Flexible assessment, regular feedback Student success
    • How students manage the process of transition?
    • What do they expect to happen?
    • What are their hopes, fears and aspirations?
    • How do they think they will feel; adapt; respond?
    Discussion Point 2
  • Why Come to University?
    • Balance of power between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation
    • Why have they decided to come to University at all?
    • What do they expect…
      • of University itself?
      • to do once they leave?
  • Why Do Students Leave University?
    • Because they are not engaged
    • Not engaged academically
      • “ I am not clever enough”
      • “ The course is not what I thought it would be”
    • Not engaged socially
      • “ I feel lonely”
      • “ I am homesick”
      • “ The other students are not friendly”
  • Why Are You Here?
    • Because “ I have nothing else to do”
    • Because “ my parents/siblings told me to come”
    • Because “ I don’t want to get a job”
    • Because “ I want to study the subject”
    • What impact will this have on engagement? What does it mean for our learners’ journey?
  • What does all this mean?
    • Challenges with engaging students in their studies
    • Conflicting pressures and concerns taking focus away from University
    • Lack of ‘academic maturity’
    • Poor decision making
    • What we can do to make it easier/more effective?
    Do we know…
  • What Can We Do?
    • Identify student expectations of University
    • Make explicit institutional requirements
    • Provide holistic induction experience
    • Support assessment process
      • Provide early formative assessment
      • Engage with curriculum to inspire learners
    • Define curriculum engagement
    • Academic and Social integration
  • Context: Research into the FYE
    • National research in FYE ongoing
    • UK behind in terms of research compared with America and Australia
    • Issues identified have not really changed
    • Problems have wider impact due to differences in student population
  • Recent headlines highlight issues of engagement How do students feel about their Higher Education experiences?
  • Students 2.0?
    • Who/what are modern students?
    • A vision of students today Wesch (2007)
    • Engaging Students at Bradford (Currant, 2009)
    • What issues do they face?
    • What challenges does this pose for us?
    • How do we respond to differences from the ‘norm’?
  • Student Expectations
    • Issues to Consider
      • Learning
      • Assessment
      • Feedback
      • Initial experiences
      • Support
    What expectations do you think new students have about University? Discussion Point 3
  • Expectations?
    • Varied
    • Keen to get started on studies
    • Want support from staff
    • Want to make friends
    • Continuation and development of precious educational experiences
    • (Refs: Currant, 2008; Currant and Keenan, 2009; Breen and Currant, 2009)
    Research Findings
  • Expectations
    • “ I hope I can become more confident as well as stretch myself in lots of new ways, push my boundaries. I hope University can support me in this and help me when I flounder”
    “ I expect to sign up to do a hundred and one things and then get stressed because I can't cope with them all. Or I expect I will try too hard and therefore overload myself with unnecessary pressure and get stressed”
  • How do students think they learn best?
    • “ I prefer practical learning as I like to do things and get bored when just listening to someone talking. I do quite well when working in a group as well as it gives me more ideas and opinions”
    “ Through repetition. I like to study independently initially but then to consolidate the learning I like to discuss it and have feedback on it. I have a low attention span and so find a lot of reading and quiet time very hard work. I like to interact with people and so the discussion and debate of ideas appeals to me greatly” “ I learn best from doing things or thinking through a problem with other people or by writing something down, drawing it. I don't learn much by just reading something”
    • “ I think the best part for me was meeting so many new people. I didn't know anyone else before I came here, and I was worried about not making friends, not fitting in etc. But on my very first day (the welcome talk), I already got talking to a few people, and that really worked wonders for my confidence. Since I've got here, I've got to know so many different people, and it's just been amazing!”
    What is their best experience? “ The tutorials were very helpful to guide the students during the year. Also seminars and other supporting classes. I felt that the lecturers were people who we can speak with and this is necessary for a non English student”
    • “ Lecturers that present the course material in such a way that what could be a boring lecture is interesting”
    What one thing would they change? “ More meetings to promote the relation among student (same or different years).. to exchange experiences, knowledge about life in the city, at Uni..etc…” “ More podcasts from lectures to be available” “ I want observers come to observe lecturers and see how they teaching. I also want them to ask students in private about lecturers” “ More online FAQs to assist those of us who cannot always contact the university during opening times”
  • Bradford FYE Survey
    • Annual survey undertaken to place results of national work into local context
    • Aims of the research are to:
      • Understand what issues might affect new first year students.
      • Identify where the University might need to improve provision, and how this could be achieved.
      • Understand how students adapt to studying at University.
      • Identify levels of engagement with the University.
      • Identify potential trends between previous study and engagement with University.
      • Inform the development of induction, retention, transition and progression strategies at the University.
  • Bradford FYE Survey Headlines
    • Surprisingly low numbers (29%) of students in employment
    • Low involvement in Clubs and Societies (29%)
    • 40% of respondents ‘first in family’ to attend University
    • Significant issues identified to do with
      • Student behaviour
      • Commuting to and from campus/between campuses
      • Adjusting to being at University
      • Organisational issues within courses
  • Best Experiences
    • Meeting other people/making new friends
    • The University and how friendly it is
    • The University experience and growing up/taking responsibility for myself
    • Academic environment
    • BUT – these responses came more from white, female 18-25 year old students than minority ethnic students
  • Best Experiences – their words
    • “ I feel like I'm working my brain again after six years of no studying!”
    • “ I think the best part for me was meeting so many new people. I didn't know anyone else before I came here, and I was worried about not making friends, not fitting in etc. But on my very first day (the welcome talk), I already got talking to a few people, and that really worked wonders for my confidence. Since I've got here, I've got to know so many different people, and it's just been amazing!“
    • “ I'm just eager to learn things on my course. I'm actually enjoying learning now I'm older.”
  • Best Experiences – their words
    • “ Living away from home, the course itself, societies and the optional classes outside of the course.”
    • “ Making friends and the university facilities like the courtyard and basement”
    • “ My tutors are very helpful, understanding and approachable”
    • “ The Atrium, a nice place for mates to chill. we make friends with friends of friends.”
    • “ Woking with caring, committed staff, especially lecturers!”
  • Worst Experiences
    • Travelling and commuting to the University/parking
    • Free time/gaps between lectures
    • Managing money
    • Organisation of the course
    • Adjusting to being at University
    • Other students
  • Worst Experiences – their words
    • “ A combination of not liking the course, the university, lecturers and Bradford itself.”
    • “ The city itself is not as lively as I expected”
    • “ Don't feel as involved in the 'university lifestyle' this is because my course is so intense and i wasn't informed of activities during freshers week.”
    • “ Entering a building, whose entrance is surrounded by smokers”
    • “ Getting lost, arriving late to lectures due to not finding the rooms”
    • “ Modules are scattered by time and by location”
    • “ Non serious students”
  • Worst Experiences – their words
    • “ Not being able to make new friends and that it is a problem travelling everyday as i live quite a distance from the university. Also the freshers fair was not a very good one there wasn’t much to do. not enough activities for students to be able to interact with each other so that we could make and meet new people and friends.”
    • “ Other students there seems to be some sort of segregation within the students on the campus and I have never witnessed this before I find it quite intimidating”
    • “ Poor services and absolute lack of space in the canteen. Plus the food is expensive. The lack of relaxation space/somewhere to sit and eat lunch in general is very poor.”
  • What one thing would they change?
    • Better organisation of enrolment.
    • Free bus service between campuses and more frequent bus services between train stations and campuses.
    • Better planning of timetables to enable full days of study with some days off in the week for private study.
    • Smaller groups for seminars/tutorials.
    • Some way of integrating students more effectively e.g. those not living in halls or who are parents and feel isolated.
    • More explanation of what being at University means and how to manage that process.
    • More icebreaker sessions, more opportunities to meet people/get to know them rather than going straight into lectures.
    • More social spaces.
    • More PC clusters, especially at Unity and Emm Lane.
  • What still needs to be done?
    • Provision of more social space on campus
    • More opportunity to meet new people in first few weeks
      • Student Union involvement
      • School/course based activities
    • Reality checks to ensure people feel supported
    • Understand better where students are coming from and what they need to help them adjust
    • A more ‘personal’ touch to a major life change
    • Helping students to engage with the institution more effectively
      • Local students feel loyalty to their course and their friends. They do not ‘belong’ to the University as a whole
      • National/International students feel more loyalty to the University than local students.
      • How can we make the University more of a community?
    • How do they manage transition?
    • What are their best experiences?
    • What are their worst experiences?
    • What steps have you taken to support their transition?
    What do you know about the experiences of your students? Discussion Point 4
    • How have we addressed these issues?
    • Overhaul of induction framework, development of new strategy
    • Overhaul of the personal tutoring framework
    • Opening of the Atrium
    • Transformation of student support at Bradford:
      • Changes to process of administrative transactions through launch of the Hub
      • Adaptation of traditional Learner Support model to incorporate wider range of services
    • Establishment of the FYE Forum
    • Embedding of the LDU within the University
    • Launching Develop Me!
    Integration, Support & Retention
  • Meeting those needs…
    • Extended student model
      • Pre-entry to post graduation
    • E-induction
      • Seamless transition into University
    • Integrated online support
      • 24/7 support available
      • Responding to diverse student needs
      • Digital typology
  • Develop Me! Online
    • Development of ‘extended student’ model
    • Focus of Pathfinder Project (strand 1)
    • Replicating good practice at other institutions:
      • e.g. Bournemouth, Sunderland
    • Overall objective to enable effective transition and initial engagement with institution
    • Evidence based approach
      • Work stems from research in sector including STAR, 2006; Yorke, 1997; Longden and Yorke, 2007; Harvey and Drew, 2006; Tinto, 1999
  • E-induction
    • Academic:
    • Early engagement with academic materials and development of academic skills
    • Completion of SaPRA to identify levels of confidence and develop action plan to reflect on with personal tutor and evidence in PDP
    • Social:
    • Start process of making links with peers on courses and other students in University
    • Share hopes, fears and concerns about starting course
    • Identify challenges and find answers to burning questions
    Primary objective: enable students to manage process of transition in academic and social terms
  • Integrated Online Support Develop Me! Online E- Induction Materials Course Specific Information Targeted additional Information Integrated support for skills development and understanding development needs Generic University based information PLUS plagiarism and referencing materials Bespoke interactive exercises to promote academic and social cohesion prior to arrival and first few weeks Targeted information relevant to particular courses e.g. Health & Safety
  • Develop Me! Meet and chat online
    • Expectations survey
    • First Year Experience questionnaire
    Meet and chat, pre-entry activities developme.ning.com Online resources www.bradford.ac.uk/developme Skills tracking Mobile guides www.braduni.mobi Student voice
  • Develop Me! Online
    • Successes
    • Early access to materials
    • Access to SaPRA more effective
    • Clear links with PDP process
    • Early focus on developing skills and evidencing competencies
    • Challenges
    • Bringing staff on board and using new technologies
    • What about those who don’t have access to the web?
  • Digital Typology Digitally Inexperienced Digital Socialites Digitally Reluctant Digitally Experienced Experience of technology Degree of educational contribution High Low Low High
    • Pre-entry work and/or Induction/Transition Activities:
    • What activities do you currently offer?
    • What would you like to be able to do?
    • How well do your students adjust to University?
    • Policy Issues
    • What implications does this have for your role?
    • How will you respond to an ever diversifying student body?
    • What else is on the horizon?
    Discussion Point 5