On reflection: mature students’ views of teaching and learning on Access to Higher Education Courses

Hugh Busher, Nalita James, Anna Piela

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    Abstract

    Mature students’ experiences of learning and teaching on Access to Higher Education course are coloured by their socio-economic backgrounds, their prior experiences of learning and their relationships with their tutors. After giving informed consent, 60 students and 20 tutors across seven colleges in a region of England in 2012–2013 took part in interviews on these topics, the former group on three occasions during the academic year. A further 500 students across the colleges completed two questionnaires during the year. Qualitative data were analysed inductively. Quantitative data were analysed with simple descriptive statistics. Findings suggest that students preferred tutors who treated them respectfully, modelled effective learning practices clearly and empowered them to be independent learners. They also welcomed working collaboratively with their fellow students and being supported by the institutions they attended.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)296-313
    JournalInternational Studies in Sociology of Education
    Volume25
    Issue number4
    Early online date15 Sep 2015
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Keywords

    • agency and power
    • collaborative culture
    • policy contexts
    • student voice
    • tutors’ roles

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