Third year students' perceptions and experiences are framed by their first year experience at university.
The experiences of a cohort of students was explored in their first year and their third year of study at university. The first year experience reported by these students was consistent with earlier national data. At a cohort level, student use and views of the usefulness of learning technologies changed significantly, but their was no overall change for the cohort in terms of their academic orientation, academic application, perceptions of their university experiences, level of satisfaction or perceived worth of their studies from first year to third year. In 2004, student behaviours regarding technology changed considerably, only 35% of individuals maintained similar behaviours reported in 2002. In contrast, for the majority (between 50-70%) of individuals, early perceptions of teaching and their learning environment remained fixed. Aspects of the first year experience on campus, particularly: rising to the intellectual challenge of study, making friends, participating in class discussions, access to information and teachers, respect from peers, a sense of comfortableness on campus and finally some derived value from the university experience, tend to frame their later university experience.
Turning the Kaleidoscope