In July 2007 the National Audit Office (NAO) published a report into student retention.
This confirmed the strong performance of universities and colleges in retaining their students, at a time when higher education (HE) has grown. But it also found that the sector carries out little evaluation of the impact and transferability of this practice, despite the wide range of advice on good practice in this area.
Following the NAO report, we and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation made available a total of £1 million from 2008 to 2011 to support projects that identify, evaluate and disseminate institutional analysis and good practice relating to student retention.
The primary purpose of the programme was to analyse and share good practice about the most effective strategies to ensure high continuation and completion rates within HE.
Seven universities were selected and awarded grants to run projects. Many of these worked in partnership with other institutions. In total, 21 institutions were directly involved in the grants programme.
A team from the Higher Education Academy and Action on Access supported the programme and help to ensure effective co-ordination across the funded HE partners and maximum impact across the HE sector.
The seven funded projects, and the lead institutions, were:
Reports from the individual projects are available.
The Higher Education Academy has also published a Compendium of effective practice in higher education retention and success, which includes contributions from several of the projects funded through the ‘What works? Student retention and success’ programme.
For further information regarding student retention and success please contact Siân Griffiths, 0117 931 7153, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Page last updated 13 August 2012