A Good Practice Guide: Safeguarding Student Learning Engagement
Nelson, K. & Creagh T.
Queenslad University of Technology
The project Good practice for safeguarding student learning engagement in higher education institutions commenced in 2010 as a Competitive Grant with funding provided by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council. Since 2012, the project was supported and overseen by the Office for Learning and Teaching within the Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (Innovation). \r\n\r\nThe concept of student engagement is a key factor in student achievement and retention. Knowing this, many Australasian universities have been designing and implementing initiatives that monitor student activities for signs that they are at risk of disengaging, and initiating timely support interventions to encourage (re)engagement. We refer to these initiatives as programs for monitoring student learning engagement (MSLE). Given the aspiration for social inclusion in higher education, it is absolutely critical that MSLE initiatives are approached from a philosophical, moral and ethical position that is fundamentally aimed at enabling and facilitating attainment and success of all students. These philosophical underpinnings are critical if we are to ensure that students from groups for whom social and cultural disadvantage has been a barrier to participation and achievement in higher education have the opportunity to participate as fully as possible and are not further disadvantaged by the perpetuation of dominant culture and power paradigms. Consequently, it is our belief that MSLE initiatives should be consistent with the concept of social justice and be guided by a set of principles that provide a philosophical foundation for practice. \r\n\r\nTherefore, the purpose of this project was to lead the design of a suite of resources to guide good practice for safeguarding student learning engagement, so that the design and implementation of MSLE practices are consistent with the notions of equity and social justice.