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Exploring the impact of an ipsative literacy development intervention on first year university students' fear of failure in assessment

Collier, Caroline; (2018) Exploring the impact of an ipsative literacy development intervention on first year university students' fear of failure in assessment. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This work enhances sector understanding of the impact of using an ipsative literacy development intervention on first year university students’ fear of failure in assessment. The work explores the literacy experiences and practices of nontraditionally qualified undergraduates as they make their transition into their first year of higher education, academic study and assessment activities. Research literature continues to raise concerns around progression and attainment, particularly for students from lower socio-economic backgrounds. Academic study and writing in particular often present challenges for students without traditional entry qualifications. The literature further suggests that learners experience many influences as they enter higher education yet it is difficult for the university and tutors to influence learners at this point of transition. The findings in this thesis suggest that through literacy intervention, course teams are able to influence points of transition and support at-risk first years into tutor preferred literacy practices for academic study and writing. The justification, design and use of a literacy intervention are presented, with findings demonstrating how ipsative assessment activities positively influence students whilst they are in points of transition. Participant accounts and written assignments at three different points during a literacy intervention situated in a discipline module are scrutinised. This uncovers complex participant reactions of fear, anxiety, confusion and not knowing what was required for academic study and writing. Analysis showed participants were unaware of how institutional provisions could support them. Although initially seeking support outside of the institution from family and friends, who were unfamiliar with academia, the assessment design within the intervention framework ensured engagement with the tutor-led learning environment. In particular, an online forum and materials supporting iterative ipsative feedback allowed tutor influence at points of transition. Findings of this research have the potential to inform policies on progression and attainment through informing educational practices to support learners in making successful transition to academic study and writing in Higher Education.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Exploring the impact of an ipsative literacy development intervention on first year university students' fear of failure in assessment
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Culture, Communication and Media
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10043556
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