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Enhancing the First Year Experience. Clare Carter University of Ulster. Widening Participation. UU committed to widening participation HEFCE benchmark is 28% participation from social classes IIIM, IV and V (1999-2000 intake) UU rate was 39% Students must also be retained and progress

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enhancing the first year experience

Enhancing the First Year Experience

Clare Carter

University of Ulster

widening participation
Widening Participation
  • UU committed to widening participation
  • HEFCE benchmark is 28% participation from social classes IIIM, IV and V (1999-2000 intake)
  • UU rate was 39%
  • Students must also be retained and progress
  • One initiative is Step-Up programme
uu retention
UU retention
  • Benchmark for 1999-2000 entry was 10%, 8% for young entrants and 15% for mature entrants
  • Actual rate that year was 11%, 10% for young entrants and 13% for mature entrants
uu project
UU project
  • Collate good practice within the university
  • Collect information on aspects of 1st year experience
  • Collect information on first year student opinion
  • Collect good practice from elsewhere
  • Construct programme relating good practice to identified student needs
  • Pilot and evaluate in year 2
  • Finalise and disseminate
initiatives already on going in some faculties
Initiatives already on-going in some faculties
  • Review of Induction
  • Review of first year curriculum
  • Enhancing role of studies advisor
  • Enhancing subject support
  • Enhancing study skills support
  • Monitoring of attendance with follow-up
what happens to first year students
What happens to first year students
  • Collection of information relating to:
    • pre-entry provision of information to prospective and incoming students
    • induction
    • curriculum
    • studies support
    • assessment
student characteristics
Student Characteristics
  • Most students are from Ireland?
  • Working part-time?
  • Many are first in family to go into higher education?
  • Many are not confident about their study skills when they come to university?
  • Evidence is needed
student diversity
Student diversity
  • We know:
    • how many; ages; qualifications; ethnicity; disability;
  • We don’t know:
    • family experience of HE; extent of outside employment; incoming student expectations about study in HE;
questionnaires
Questionnaires
  • On entry
  • Later first semester
  • Withdrawing students
outcomes
Outcomes
  • Profile of first year students
    • Expectations of university
    • family experience of HE
    • accommodation
    • employment
    • travel times
  • Do students withdrawing show particular risk factors?
outcomes 2
Outcomes (2)
  • Handbook of recommendations of good practice for enhancing retention
  • Piloting of recommendations next year
  • Roll-out across University 2005-06
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