Improving tertiary pathways by improving support for prospective students

Media Spotlight

Adelaide Advertiser: Tim Williams, May 13, 2018

University entrance system needs overhaul to reduce dropout rates, SA study finds


Adelaide Advertiser: Tim Williams, May 14, 2018

Call to fix uni course maze


Adelaide Advertiser: Tim Williams, February 27, 2017

 “Year 12s confused and overwhelmed by university options in SA, study finds”


Campus Review: James Wells, February 24, 2017

School leaver struggle to choose uni courses


Campus Morning Mail: Stephen Matchett, February 23, 2017

Commencing students: bemused, bothered and bewildered

(dis)Oriented week

There’s a reason why kids on campus this morning are under-orientated, anything up to half of them could have no clue how to find what they need – and that’s not just coffee. New research by the three South Australian universities finds that 51 per cent of students of students straight from school find it difficult to decide what to study. Project researcher Andrea Parks from the University of South Australia says the study, based on a survey of Year 12 students in 67 SA high schools, found 90 per cent investigate study choices but over a third struggle to understand their university options in areas of interest and just over 30 per cent are not certain of the courses and content they would study in first year.

Part of the problem is that school career counsellors are stretched and university’s school liaison teams on visits do not always have the attention of over-stretched Y12 students. Ms Parks says there is “some suggestion” in the data that increased collaboration among universities could help with this.

She adds the team hopes to use the completed research for a national strategy to support prospective students on study choices and “foster engagement, retention and attainment.”

This strikes CMM as a very good idea indeed. For a start universities are wasting buckets of marketing money convincing kids to enrol and then losing them because what young people thought they would get isn’t what’s offered. Education Minister Simon Birmingham also spent last year warning “universities must take responsibility for those students they choose to enrol and ensure they have the capabilities and support to succeed,” CMM January 28 2016) and he is expected to establish rewards and punishments over attrition in his forthcoming higher education policy.


Adelaide Advertiser, Tim Williams, May 3, 2016

Adelaide Advertiser Page 5 article 040516

Link to article: Unis to study dropout rates

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