Featured News Top award for innovative JCU program

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Fri, 2 Dec 2016

Top award for innovative JCU program

A James Cook University program dedicated to helping students thrive in higher education has picked up a prestigious national award.

JCU’s Learning Centre has won an Australian Government award for university teaching. The Learning Centre was praised as an example of an outstanding program that enhances student learning.

Head of the program, Dr Andrea Lynch, says the program is designed to assist students in adapting to university study and has been operating since 2012.

“It aims to develop confident, independent and successful students within the demands of their disciplines,” she said.

Dr Lynch said that, rather than the ad hoc method of student assistance offered by universities in the past, JCU’s system was deliberate and built on strong theoretical underpinnings.

“The core innovation of this program is a systematic and whole of institution approach to learning support and development. It has proven benefits in terms of retention, engagement and achievement for the diverse student cohorts at JCU,” she said.

Dr Lynch said the program is careful to promote itself as something all successful students take part in – rather than a form of extra assistance.  

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) Professor Sally Kift said this was an outstanding result for the university.

“JCU works hard to support the success of all students. Dr Lynch and her team have distilled what works best and have transformed our institutional approach with this innovative and sector leading program,” she said.

JCU’s current student profile includes students from low socio-economic backgrounds (24%), students from regional areas (20%), students from remote areas (4%), students who identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander (5%), and students from a non-English speaking background (6.9%). Over half of commencing students are the first in their families to attend university.


Contact: Dr Andrea Lynch
E: andrea.lynch@jcu.edu.au