Supporting Student Retention and Progression

Find details here of LCC’s approach to supporting the retention and progression of our students.

Natural landscape by Amy Grimes

At LCC, a significant number of students leave their courses prematurely, many by the end of their first year. This can be due to a range of factors and complex challenges students face on entering higher education. Some of these challenges are beyond our control, but many of them can be anticipated and countered with timely and appropriate support. Some new students feel out of depth academically and could benefit from Academic Support or Peer Mentoring. Some may be experiencing cultural or language barriers to participation, which the UAL Language Centre or International Office could help with. Others with financial, health or accommodation issues which UAL Student Services could help resolve.

Course tutors are often the first point of contact for new students and are well positioned to signpost students to such support. To help with this, LCC provides course teams with the Academic Progression Tool (APT) which serves as a digital, collaborative, monitoring and communication aide for prioritising support to students. The tool provides tutors with a unique combination of information about their students, in secure Excel workbook they can add to and communicate through.

APT has evolved from a Student Support and Progression Project initiated by Adrienne Tulley in 2018-19, in which time nine LCC undergraduate courses fully participated, using the tool to prioritise support to students identified as at risk of leaving. Since then, nearly all LCC undergraduate courses have started using APT and an increasing number of postgraduate courses. Using data to prompt support interventions in this way is known in educational technology terms as ‘predictive analytics’, written about on the Teaching Hub by Lee Lewis, and at UAL, LCC are currently leading the way in this area with the Academic Progression Tool. 

APT is currently managed by Lucy Panesar (Progression and Attainment Project Manager), and comes with administration support from Veronica Otero (Project Administrator) and outreach support from Chris Bryant (Student Experience Officer). Colleagues can find more information from the APT 2020-21 User Guide or by contacting Lucy on l.panesar@lcc.arts.ac.uk