Supporting first-year University student success via multi-disciplinary workshops: The College Connect way.



Academic success, student engagement, Transition, Pathways, Self-regulated learning, University students


Students face many challenges as they transition to university during their first year of study, including academic expectations. The transition process can be eased through supplementary support encouraging development and practice of academic skills through self-regulated learning strategies. These strategies can increase motivation, self-efficacy and engagement, leading to greater academic success. Multi-disciplinary workshops embedded within a first-year unit for students at a regional university in Australia aim to encourage the development and practice of these academic skills within a supportive environment. Analyses of student attendance, unit score, and grade point average (GPA) were undertaken to determine if there was a relationship between workshop attendance and academic performance. Results indicate that students attending workshops tend to achieve better unit and GPA results than those who do not. Significant positive relationships between attendance and these measures of academic performance suggest multi-disciplinary workshops may contribute towards greater academic success. The approach presented in this study could thus be beneficial for higher education institutions to support the transition of first-year students, and may be an alternative to support strategies that are focused on individual units of study.  


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Author Biographies

Michael Brickhill, Southern Cross University

Dr Brickhill is an Associate Lecturer at Southern Cross University, Australia.  He specialises in supporting first year university students' success.  

Sue Muloin, Southern Cross University

Dr Sue Muloin is a lecturer at Southern Cross University, Australia. Her interests are in equity and diversity in pathway programs.

Johanna Nieuwoudt, Southern Cross University

Dr Johanna Nieuwoudt is a lecturer at Southern Cross University, Australia.  Her research focuses on identifying factors contributing towards student success.


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How to Cite

Brickhill, M., Muloin, S., & Nieuwoudt, J. (2024). Supporting first-year University student success via multi-disciplinary workshops: The College Connect way. Student Engagement in Higher Education Journal, 5(3), 198–214. Retrieved from