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Retention and Attrition of Students in Higher Education: Challenges in Modern Times to What Works

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Author(s): Marguerite Maher | Helen Macallister

Journal: Higher Education Studies
ISSN 1925-4741

Volume: 3;
Issue: 2;
Date: 2013;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Retention and attrition rates in higher education have long been a focus of research. This paper presents findings of a single case study, undertaken in a School of Education, which identify important strategies that have led to attrition of five to eight per cent, compared with 18 per cent cross the education sector in Australia (Department of Education, Science and Training, 2004). Findings include: individual admissions interviews, funding of an Associate Dean Pastoral Care, course coordinators providing continuity of support, easy access for students to academic staff, well-supported, extended professional experience, senior staff lecturing undergraduates, congruence between co-curricular supports and the educational framework, and comprehensive mentoring of new students. Finally, sustainability of these strategies in modern times is discussed.
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