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Singular Connections: Enabling Students to Feel Valued as Individuals


Angel, C and Hawkins, C and Kemp-Smith, J and Lobo, A and Finnen, M and Lewis, R, Singular Connections: Enabling Students to Feel Valued as Individuals, Teaching Matters 2020, 30 December, Hobart, Tasmania (2020) [Conference Extract]

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At University College (UC), the student is at the centre of what we do. Every day we consider the student's wellbeing, and the standard of the learning and teaching we provide. We also aim to ensure that students are engaged, and that their enrolment and other processes run smoothly. This presentation showcases some of the practices undertaken by academic coaches in the UC Experiential Education Team to reach out to, and connect with students.

These were largely engagement practices that included individual telephone calls to students to welcome them to UC; offer advice with enrolment; ensure they had the correct links to register for orientations; confirm whether they were managing with their studies; ensure they had all the information and support they needed; and, to provide encouragement or mentoring if required. Insights shared are based on observations by academic coaches, program registrations to sessions, and informal feedback from telephone conversations.

Findings indicate that genuine singular connections are worthwhile; whether these are through telephone calls or during in-class focus groups or tutorials. The presentation discusses how contact with students on a personal level, followed by positive interaction and support, created a sense of belonging and connectedness, and a feeling of value. This was evidenced through receiving higher registrations for our orientation sessions after making individual telephone calls to welcome newly enrolled students. It was also evidenced, through the expressions of gratitude captured during calls offering support, information, and guidance. The presentation highlights how engagement practices increase the connection students have with us, and why this is so important.

Item Details

Item Type:Conference Extract
Keywords:student, connectivity, values, experiential education
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Curriculum and pedagogy
Research Field:Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Teaching and curriculum
Objective Field:Assessment, development and evaluation of curriculum
UTAS Author:Angel, C (Dr Christine Angel)
UTAS Author:Hawkins, C (Dr Cherie Hawkins)
UTAS Author:Kemp-Smith, J (Mrs Jennifer Kemp-Smith)
UTAS Author:Lobo, A (Dr Ana Lobo)
UTAS Author:Finnen, M (Mrs Melissa Finnen)
UTAS Author:Lewis, R (Mr Robert Lewis)
ID Code:150166
Year Published:2020
Deposited By:Office of the University College
Deposited On:2022-05-31
Last Modified:2022-08-17

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