Several problems of unsatisfactory student retention and progression together with an incomplete selection criterion were evident in a newly developed, vocational orientated, pre-hospital care course at a rural Australian university. With increasing demand for student placement, the need arose to address these issues and satisfactorily resolve them. A search of the literature identified limited information with regard to predictors of academic success within the pre-hospital care discipline. Therefore, the idea to conduct a study to identify factors that are predictive of first year student achievement and to develop an appropriate student entry criterion was born. Although there was limited literature available specifically focusing on the pre-hospital care discipline, a comprehensive review of the literature identified numerous predictors of academic performance. Six predictors of academic performance for first year students at college or university that regularly emerged from the literature were selected for investigation. These predictors were; previous scholastic achievement, post-secondary educational qualifications, student entry type (mature age vs. traditional entry), previous related experience, gender and urban vs. rural background. The study employed both bivariate and multivariate analyses and found that all variables were somehow related to the various operationalizations of academic success. Results support the contention that better prediction can be achieved through the use of multiple variables. Study results led to the development of an organisational tool that can be used to assist in the effective selection of pre-hospital care students. Further, this working template has the generalizability to assist other vocational allied health care courses with their entering student cohort selection.
|Qualification||Master of Health Science|
|Award date||01 Jan 2006|
|Place of Publication||Australia|
|Publication status||Published - 2006|