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22 September 2014. Changing Practice to Achieve Pacific Success. Changing Practice to Achieve Pacific Success. Tavita Filemoni*, John Horrocks, Lisa Wong, Seann Paurini, Arden Perrot, Manaini Cama, Aleeshea Reid Ako Aotearoa Regional Hub Fund. Overview of Presentation.

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22 September 2014

Changing Practice

to Achieve Pacific Success

Changing Practice to Achieve

Pacific Success

Tavita Filemoni*, John Horrocks, Lisa Wong, Seann Paurini, Arden Perrot, Manaini Cama, Aleeshea Reid

AkoAotearoa Regional Hub Fund

Overview of presentation
Overview of Presentation

  • Introduction and Context

  • Research Question

  • Methodology

  • Interim Findings

  • Summary and Discussion

Pacific learners in tertiary education
Pacific Learners in Tertiary Education

  • Tertiary Education Strategies

    • Lifting the achievement of Pacific learners is a goal in the latest New Zealand Tertiary Education Strategies (TES)

    • Pacific Learner Strategy documents published by TEC, NZQA, Ministry of Education

Pacific learners in tertiary education1
Pacific Learners in Tertiary Education

  • Requirements for success - previous research

    • Institutional commitment to Pacific Learners and Pacific-centric teaching and learning relationships are required (Chu et al, 2013)

    • Community involvement acknowledged as a contributor to success (TESs)

    • Investigation of Pacific Policy in Tertiary Institutions - commissioned by Ako Aotearoa (Horrocks et al, 2012)

    • Success for all: Improving Maori and Pasifika student success in degree-level studies. (Airini et al, 2010).

Pacific trades initiative established
Pacific Trades Initiative Established

  • Pacific Trades Initiative (PTI) established by TEC in 2011 to provide fee-free support for Pacific learners in the Trades

  • First cohort in 2012, 2nd cohort in 2013

  • WelTec became a PTI provider

  • WelTec uses this as an opportunity to drive change in how services and support are provided to this cohort of learners

Pti recruitment process
PTI Recruitment Process

Formal Assessment by Institutions


For Process


Final Approval

By Church Ministers

Promote PacificCommunities

Work with Institutions

Award Scholarships, Blessing & Orientation

Church MinistersDevelop Nomination Forms

Church MinistersReceive Nominations

Research question
Research Question

What factors contribute to the success of PTI students at WelTec?

  • Purpose

    • To inform better practice to improve retention and achievement for all Pacific Learners

  • Scope

    • Teaching / Learning / Support practices

    • Pastoral practices

    • Community involvement

    • Literacy and Numeracy

    • Retention and completion


  • Mixed Methods Approach

    • Quantitative (TEC test scores, etc)

    • Qualitative (interviews)

  • Ethical approval obtained

Methodology data collected
Methodology - Data Collected





TEC Tool Literacy


TEC Tool Numeracy

PTI students







Church ministers

Ethical Approval obtained

Interim findings
Interim Findings

  • Students and Programme of study

  • Literacy and Numeracy Performance Indicators

  • Interviews (analysed to date)

    • Church ministers

    • PTI students

    • Tutors

Literacy and numeracy indicators
Literacy and Numeracy Indicators

  • LN Performance Indicators obtained using TEC Literacy & Numeracy Assessment Tool:

  • LN Percentage Assessed Indicator (Compliance)

    • Indicator of %age of learners who received initial and progress assessments

    • Indication of institutional use of the Assessment Tool

  • LN Gain Indicator (Significant Gain)

    • Indicator of difference between initial and progress scores where there is a statistically significant gain

    • Indication of improvement in students’ literacy and numeracy

Literacy and numeracy
Literacy and Numeracy

LN Percentage Assessed Indicator (Compliance)

  • Increased compliance from:

    • Greater student and tutor engagement

    • Students could see long-term benefits in improving LN

    • Students were informed and part of the assessment process

Literacy and numeracy1
Literacy and Numeracy

LN Gain Indicator (Significant Gain)

LN was embedded into course work and academic support in 2013 producing significant gains: 33% increase in Literacy, 11% increase in Numeracy.

Professional development give to tutors by LLN Advisor and co-teaching by LLN team and Learning Support tutors contributed to the improvement

Interviews with church ministers
Interviews with Church ministers

“The vision of the Ministers’ Fraternal in Wellington [is] that we believe that we can improve our children’s education by working collaboratively with tertiary education [institutions]. It has been our vision right from the start and this is how we see a way where we could lead out people to success.”

(Church minister 1)

“People contact and people knowledge, local knowledge, is always a much better way.”

(Church minister 2)

Interviews with pti students
Interviews with PTI students

“He was just patient for the Pacific students to move on; not just be like builders but be owners. His morals were like real good; straight up. He told us what was on his mind and what he wanted us to be. I think that inspired me just to move on keep going.”

(Carpentry student about tutor.. and the aspiration for students to think ahead .. similar quotes from a Church minister.)

Interviews with tutors
Interviews with tutors

“Being Pacific Islanders is something to cherish and that’s why I say to the boys, “ The actions that we do today that will echo on through for the next generation of people that come along; they’ll see why we’re successful here and what we do they’ll model it around your actions, your attendance, what you do on the course and the things you’ve taken from the course.” So yeah I do ask a lot of the boys..”

(Carpentry tutor)

Factors contributing to success
Factors contributing to success

  • Visioning

  • Recruitment through community links

  • Staff as learners

  • The “push” – being directive

  • Pastoral care

  • Being part of a team

  • Visibility

  • Work readiness

Areas for improvement
Areas for improvement

  • A Pacific strategy for WelTec

  • Further dialogue with Pacific ministers about their role in pastoral care during the students’ period of study

  • An expanded Pasifika Centre

  • An improved recruitment and selection process

  • Further support for initiatives such as the jobs passport

Holistic integrated approach
Holistic / Integrated Approach

Learning Commons

Learning Advisors, LLN Advisors, Career, Support, Library


Student Mentors

Student Mentors



Pacific learner journey to success
Pacific Learner Journey to Success



Work environment




Contributing to


Family, NZ, Pacific


  • Interviewees who agreed to be part of this study

  • WelTec staff who have contributed to the Holistic/Integrated Approach and Pacific Learner success

  • Funding – Ako Aotearoa Regional Hub Fund, WelTec Innovation & Research Grants Committee