From the ground up to the top down: Enhancing an Institute-wide first year orientation programme

Roper, Rebecca, Murphy, Lisa, McDowell, Laura and Hamilton, ron (2013) From the ground up to the top down: Enhancing an Institute-wide first year orientation programme. In: 6th Annual Learning Innovation Network Conference – Sustainable Models of Student Engagement – Rhetoric or Achievable? 17th October 2013 in the Ashling Hotel, Dublin., Dublin, Ireland.


‘Belonging’ as a social-psychological construct and important indicator of persistence, retention and student success in higher education has been particularly prevalent in the literature over the last decades (Thomas, 2012; Levitz & Noel, 1990; Tinto, 1999; Wilcox et al, 2005; Yorke & Longden, 2008; Reay et al, 2001; Lowe & Cook, 2003; Christie & Fisher, 2004; Harvey & Drew, 2006). Fostering a sense of belonging in the early stages of the first year student experience through responding to social, as well as academic needs is at the centre of institutional orientation. Robert K. Merton’s concept of ‘Anticipatory Socialisation’, coined in 1957 and taken up by Ernest Pascarella in 1986, is as relevant now in view of student induction and orientation as it was over half a century ago, and lays the framework for student engagement well past the first semester. For Mullendore and Banahan (2005), student orientation can be a ‘defining moment’ and ‘a time in which basic habits are formed that influence students academic success and personal growth’. Fidler (1991) shows evidence that extended orientation enhances student success into second year. This paper explores and outlines an inclusive process of re-development, enhancement, extension and branding of the first year orientation programme in the Institute of Art, Design and Technology (IADT), Dun Laoghaire, Dublin. The extended orientation programme was instigated by the Education Officer in the Students Union in 2012, and was enriched by cross institute-wide stakeholders, including lecturers, student services and managerial support, as well as the formulation of a First Year Task-Force to develop further programme enhancements into September, 2013. The paper chronicles the genesis of the project and discusses the process of cross-institute ‘ground up/top down’ inclusion as a model of practice for design and implementation in other institutions

[thumbnail of Book-of-Abstracts 6th Annual LIN conference 2013.pdf]
Book-of-Abstracts 6th Annual LIN conference 2013.pdf

Download (392kB) | Preview


Downloads per month over past year

View Item