Project RightFit: Encouraging pre-enrolment engagement
Whilst many students may find the prospect of going to university a challenge, for some it is a leap into the unknown that can be intimidating and stressful.

An increasingly diverse student body means students come into higher education with a range of expectations and assumptions about what it might involve and what will be expected of them as students.

Supporting students in their transition into higher education is therefore a complex and multi-dimensional process, that requires an equally multi-dimensional approach.

For more information, contact Julie Irwin - Assistant Director– Learning & Teaching

What does the scheme entail?

Project Right-Fit aims to design a pre-enrolment package as the first point of contact for students to encourage engagement, enhance the student experience and positively impact student retention.

The purpose of this first phase of the project is to investigate current practices across the sector and conduct a literature review to provide an evidence base regarding surrounding issues and best practice.

What support do you get from the University?

Engaging with the project involved a multi-faceted approach requiring the close cooperation and collaboration of academic developers, learning developers, academic and administrative staff and students.

What are the motivations behind the scheme?

We wanted to develop student engagement with their courses and the wider university prior to enrolment in order to facilitate transition, enhance student retention and attainment, acknowledge and cater for the growing diversity of our student body, and promote students’ ability to make informed choices about their chosen courses and institution.

Key benefits to the student

Access to clear and extensive pre-enrolment information for students and parents performs an important role in informing student choices about courses and institutions and can contribute to future student success and retention.

This information also has an important function in terms of induction and transition. Pre-enrolment activities work best where opportunities are offered for both generic and course specific engagement and provide students with opportunities to develop new social networks, for example via effective use of social media.

Key benefits to the University

Engaging with the project has identified best practice by specific course and programme teams in terms of pre-enrolment communication, resources and activities offered to new students.

This has helped drive an institution-wide dissemination of the research and help develop engagement initiatives with students before they enrol.

Key benefits to the sector

In an increasingly competitive Higher Education sector, institutional pre-enrolment strategies which reach out to and engage students before arrival result in students who are more likely to feel that they have made informed choices about their courses and institutions.

Opportunities for engaging in course-related activities and developing new social networks have a positive impact on student transition, attainment and retention.

If you would like more information on the project, contact Julie Irwin, Assistant Director, Learning and Teaching.

Email Julie