Individual characteristics and tailored intervention for at risk student retention

  • Stuart, George (Principal Investigator/Chief Investigator A)
  • Byrne, Mitchell (Co Investigator/Chief Investigator B)
  • Keane, Carol (Co Investigator/Chief Investigator B)

    Project: Research

    Project Details


    The population of the NT in 2021 is just over 250,000, of which around 200,000 are adults of eligible age for university entrance. Around 30% of the NT population identify as Aboriginal and just over two thirds are adults of eligible age for university entrance. Whereas the majority (around 60%) live in the greater Darwin area, a large proportion of the Aboriginal population live in remote or very remote areas suggesting that access to facilities may be an important factor in First Nations student retention. Pe-COVID data collected by QILT (Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching, 2019) reveals the most reported reasons for HE students considering early exit are health/stress related (46% of students), study/life balance related (30%), financial (27%), workload (25%) and personal reasons (25%). However, these data describe only potential triggers for attrition. These issues are prevalent amongst students and yet the majority overcome such problems and continue their studies beyond their first year of university. The proposed aim of this research is to investigate the interaction of psychological variables (cf. personality and resilience) with socio-economic, geographical, culture, and study mode characteristics in determining a student’s ultimate decision to attrite. Having identified a set of high-risk psychological variables and their triggers, we will be able to develop support and interventions tailored to sub-groups. While racial groups will not be used to identify sub-groups, it is likely that certain cultural markers will be important in identifying those at risk. For example, we may anticipate that a particular pattern of cultural and/or psychological factors associated with First Nations populations will also be predictive of attrition; however, we would not necessarily expect this pattern to be exclusive to First Nations populations and so, any intervention/support would be targeted to all students that exhibit identified psychological risk factors. Given the characteristics of our students and potential students, we anticipate triggers (c.f. remote habitation, culture) and associated risks (psychological and cultural facets).
    Short titleTailored intervention for at risk students
    Effective start/end date15/03/2214/03/25


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