Multi-dimensional retention support for the modern diverse student population

Steven John Tucker

Research output: Contribution to conferenceOther

Abstract

With an ever changing student population, internationalisation and strong strategic emphasis on retention, there is a critical need to provide pastoral and academic support to students. However, with increasing diversification in the student body support must be offered proactively and in a manner which meets diverse student preferences. Following identification of at risk groups in the school of medical sciences, a variety of support strategies have been implemented and have improved that shortfall progressively in the last 3 years.
These strategies include:
- welcome events, promoting a sense of belonging and publicising available support
- design of a VLE site with support and guidance resources tailored to at risk groups
- drop in sessions for students to come along and discuss difficulties face-to-face
- careers days to promote potential degree end points and encourage career development
- experience advertising events showcasing the unique ways in which engaging in co- and extra-curricular experiences can serve as a launch pad for student careers
- contact with retention coordinator at key points of the academic year

The success of these strategies are measurable in light of retention figures and show improvement from 13.2% student loss across one at risk group in 2009 to only 7% in 2011. The incorporation of these support mechanisms alongside the curriculum is a modern necessity and a critical supplement to University education. Recognition of the heterogeneous needs and approaches of the students underpins these strategies and is a vital consideration in terms of “a one option doesn't fit all” approach. This talk will discuss the design, set up and logistics of these support measures and will advertise their successes since they were implemented.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2014
EventHEA STEM Annual Conference: Enhancing the STEM student journey - Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Duration: 30 Apr 20141 May 2014

Conference

ConferenceHEA STEM Annual Conference: Enhancing the STEM student journey
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityEdinburgh
Period30/04/141/05/14

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Tucker, S. J. (2014). Multi-dimensional retention support for the modern diverse student population. HEA STEM Annual Conference: Enhancing the STEM student journey, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.