The retention and persistence support (RAPS) project: A transition initiative


The transition to university is often associated with stress, anxiety, and tension and in many cases can lead to students failing or withdrawing from university. Transition problems result in high social and economic costs to families and the community. The past decade has seen a proliferation of transition strategies across universities. Results from evaluations of these transition programmes suggest student retention rates are significantly higher among those students involved in these programmes. The emphasis now though is to develop school or department based programmes as these are more readily adapted to meet the specific needs of students than university wide initiatives. The School of Psychology at Edith Cowan University has developed a transition programme that incorporates initial adjustment strategies, with ongoing support throughout the first-year, designed to help students cope with, and adjust to, the demands of university life. Issues regarding the development, implementation and evaluation of this programme are discussed.



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