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Regional study hubs: Increasing student engagement to support regional students facing high first-year attrition risk factors

Abstract

The Country Universities Centre (CUC) network of regional study hubs are an emerging tool for supporting regional students to achieve success in higher education. The CUC cohort of students, and regional students more generally, face several risk factors for first-year attrition including: external mode of study, over 25 years of age, part-time study load, alternative pathways to admission, and medium to low SES. In addition, work-life balance, financial considerations, and access to technology all create barriers to study for these students. The CUC facilities and staff provide academic, administrative and pastoral support to students, as well as creating a learning community to facilitate student-to-student interactions. The positive effect of the CUC support is shown by means of a survey and student case-studies.

Published:
Pages:79 to 90
Section: Practice Reports
0 citation(s) in Web of Science

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Author Biographies

Country Universities Centre
Australia Australia

Monica Davis is the Director of Educational Delivery with the Country Universities Centre. She completed her Bachelor of Science with 1st Class Honours through the University of Newcastle, a Masters of Geostatistics through the University of Adelaide, and a Cert IV in Training and Assessment through Hunter Tafe.
Monica believes that the future of an aspiring student should not be predetermined by where he or she lives, and is very happy to be working for an organisation that is taking practical steps to support regional students.

Monica is a Cooma local, the sixth generation on her family’s property near Murrumbucca, NSW.

Country Universities Centre
Australia Australia

Duncan Taylor is the CEO of the Country Universities Centre which is working towards establishing a network of 13 Centres across NSW.  He was the inaugural Chair of the original Cooma Universities Centre which later became the Country Universities Centre Snowy Monaro.

Duncan is a Member of the TAFE NSW Commission Board, and was President of the Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association of New South Wales that seeks equity of educational opportunity for rural and remote families. Duncan previously sat on the Rural and Remote Education Advisory Group that advises the NSW Government and Department of Education on strategies to improve educational outcomes in rural and remote areas, and is a Committee Member of the Monaro Early Intervention Service. 

Duncan is a farmer on the Monaro who was also a founding director of agricultural assets management company, Growth Farms Australia