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