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Proactive approach ensures student success and retention at Unisa

A recent First-Year Experience (FYE) survey, with over 6 200 respondents, reported that 81% of prospective Unisa students saw the institution as their university of first choice. This is the feedback received from students who participated in a pre-registration orientation programme hosted by the Department: Tuition Support and Facilitation of Learning’s (DTSFL’s) Student Retention Unit (SRU) on 30 November 2022. The event was geared towards ensuring prospective students’ successful transition to their first year of study at Unisa in 2023. The two-hour session was hosted on Microsoft Teams and streamed on both Facebook Live and YouTube.

Simply titled 2023 Pre-registration Orientation, the event invited all prospective Unisa students – those who had applied and accepted offers to study at Unisa – to an all-important orientation session that covered topics such as the role of counselling in the upcoming registration process and how this aids career development, and how the registration process will unfold, including tips on the dos and don’ts. This session also included highly anticipated information on student funding opportunities and related processes.

Last, but certainly not least, the SRU and the Academic Development Open Virtual Hub (ADOVH) provided students with various resources, including massive open online courses (MOOCs) and digital learning objects such as videos and infographics, which students can use to gain critical skills that will prepare them for their journey as first-year students in 2023.

Crucially, answers to questions captured in the Live Chatbox in the three platforms used were compiled and distributed to students in a comprehensive 2023 pre–registration information pack after the event.

Safe to say that the pre-emptive services organised by the SRU were appreciated by the students, and proved vital to many. This is evidenced in the amount of interest it generated during the live event, with 2 029 prospective students on Microsoft Teams, 524 on Facebook Live, and 607 on YouTube Live, with YouTube views skyrocketing to 18 874 within 12 days after the event.


* Submitted by Ziyanda Febana, Student Success Practitioner: Student Retention Unit, Department: Tuition Support and Facilitation of Learning

Publish date: 2022/12/14