Enhancing Student Success (ESS) is a four year, institution-wide plan seeking to enhance the undergraduate student experience. It comprises 2 separate projects – the First Year Experience (FYE) project, launched in September 2015 and a new project entitled Continuing Student Success which is looking at the on-programme experience of our levels 5 and 6 students.
The plan is designed to achieve the following objectives (approved by SEC in October 2016):
First Year Experience
Objective 1: Student withdrawals at Level 4
To reduce our withdrawal rates to 4% in Year 1 / increase our continuation rates to 96%
Objective 2: Progression to level 5
To increase our rate of progression from Level 4 to Level 5 to 85%
Objective 3: Rate of return after a study break* for full-time first degree entrants
To increase the rate of return to HE (not just at Northampton) after a full year study break to 22% (above sector mean)
To increase the number of students that return to Northampton to 12% (above the sector mean)
Continuing Student Success
Objective 4: Student Completions
To increase our undergraduate student completion rates to 75% (performing above our HE competitor set). This is defined as students gaining the award that they were first registered on.
Objective 5: Undergraduate ‘Good Degrees’
To increase the percentage of undergraduate ‘good degrees’ to 72% to bring the University in line with HE and subject norms (expressed as a range across subjects)
Objective 6: DLHE graduate employability outcomes for undergraduate
To increase our undergraduate first degree employability outcomes to 67% (above the HE competitor set average)
All objectives are drawn from the University Operational Plan 2015-2020, apart from Objective 3, which is drawn from the BIMI report on HESA non-performance indicators for non-continuation.
“This project is underpinned by the University’s principles for student success, which include an integrated and collaborative approach to supporting student success.”
Achievement of the ESS Plan objectives will come through a series of 8 separate Work Packages, each with their own specific objectives.
* A study break is defined as a period of time away from studies for a maximum period of a year. A standard study break involves leaving at the end of one academic year, having a year away, and then returning at the beginning of the following academic year. It is also possible to have a mid-year study break, which would not impact on these measures.