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Conducting a withdrawal survey

Rowley, Jennifer and Aldridge, Sue (2001) Conducting a withdrawal survey. Quality in Higher Education, 7 (1). pp. 55-6. ISSN 1470-1081

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Abstract

Withdrawal of students from courses in higher education institutions is an issue that is attracting special attention in the United Kingdom. Earlier studies, primarily in the United States and Canada, have used a model that is founded on the concepts of integration and adjustment. Other perspectives can be developed by using concepts associated with motivation and service quality. The article describes a telephone survey based on semi-structured interviews, which was conducted at Edge Hill College of Higher Education and demonstrates how a withdrawal survey can be embedded in the mechanism for monitoring and evaluating the quality of the student experience. Key factors influencing withdrawal at Edge Hill are: course not as expected, travelling difficulties, institution not as expected, domestic difficulties, and financial difficulties. These factors coincide with other work on withdrawal. Issues for further development include the relationship between the withdrawal survey and the Student Charter and student satisfaction survey.

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