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Theme: Transition and Adjustment

How the transition needs of postgraduate coursework students
differ from those of undergraduate students

Catherine Lang
School of Information Technology
Swinburne University

This paper discusses the implementation of a transition program for Graduate Diploma students in the Information Technology (IT) discipline. These students are experiencing their first year of higher education in several years, or their first year in higher education in a new country. The program was implemented to cater for a mid-year intake of full-time on-campus students consisting mainly of International students, and a smaller number of part-time local students. This prototype program was closely based on an Undergraduate Transition program instituted at a neighbouring university. The outcome of implementing a program devised for undergraduates on postgraduates has led to the conclusion that mature students require a different type of transition program. Their need for weekly study groups declines as the semester progresses due to their greater ability to network within their classes and lectures. Interestingly the establishment of an electronic forum was not widely used by these IT students.

Full Paper in MS Word

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