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back on course England produced annual research reports throughout the three year project funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). Links to the research reports are below.
This final research report from the project looks at all the data gathered in the three-year period. We believe this is the largest dataset that has yet been available for analysis. The report outlines a number of findings and highlights where these reinforce the conclusions and inferences of earlier research, but also where there are new insights. We hope you that the research will be useful to the sector in responding to the on-going challenges of student retention.
Some of the key findings of the research are:
The report is also available for download here.
During academic year 2010–11, the back on course project was rolled out across England. By the end of September 2011, 91 English HEIs had agreed to engage with the project, and the contact details of over 26,000 early-leavers have been passed to the project. This report analyses the characteristics of 19,750 early-leavers from the first 42 HEIs to upload contact details, and compares them with the characteristics of the total cohort of students who attended those HEIs.
The 2011 Annual Research report is available to download here.
If you would like more information about the research methods employed in the production of the report, you may wish to download the extended version of the 2011 report here.
In academic year 2009–10, the project was piloted in the north-west of England and the interim findings of the pilot were published in December 2010. Although the number of HEIs (6) and the number of former students covered by the research was small, it was sufficient to demonstrate that there was an unsatisfied demand for the IAG service, and that research conducted about these former students carried out through identifying this group had the potential to provide new insights into why students leave early, and what might be done to support them.
A copy of the 2010 Interim Findings report can be downloaded here.
You may also be interested in the following related research.
What works? Student retention and success programme
The What works? Student retention and success programme was a three-year, £1 million initiative funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. Seven projects, involving 22 institutions were funded to generate robust evidence about how institutions can enhance student retention and success. In addition, the Support and Co-ordination team led by the Action on Access and the Higher Education Academy undertook a meta-analysis of findings, which included developing a conceptual model and tools to support institutional development. They found that student engagement lies at the heart of retention and success and therefore offers institutions the answer to their improvement. To read the Briefings, join the Community of Interest and to find out more please click here