ERIC Number: ED447977
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
The Things That Matter: Understanding the Factors That Affect the Participation and Retention of Indigenous Students in the Cadigal Program at the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney.
Farrington, Sally; DiGregorio, Kristie Daniel; Page, Susan
The School of Indigenous Health Studies at the University of Sydney (Australia) developed the Cadigal Program to improve equity of access and participation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students. The program allows lower scores on the University Admission Index or Tertiary Entrance Rank for Aboriginal applicants, who typically enter the program with less educational experience in the basic sciences and less experience with academic skills necessary for tertiary study. Researchers examining factors that influence the participation, progression, and retention of Indigenous students in full-time health professional courses at the University of Sydney interviewed a representative sample of Cadigal students. Findings indicate that participants had been very tentative about pursuing higher education. The Cadigal Program's friendly and effective support at the time of application was a deciding factor in entering the program. The program offered: a 2-week orientation program; the option of a reduced load in the first 2 years of enrollment; an academic support program; peer tutoring; and study rooms with computers, textbooks, and anatomical models. Besides the academic support these offerings provided, participants indicated that having a place for Indigenous students to go enabled development of important social and cultural support. The most alarming findings were related to the negative and racist attitudes of non-Indigenous students toward the program. Recommendations include making entry programs like the Cadigal Program more widely known in secondary schools, promoting cultural awareness within the academic community, and assisting Indigenous students to develop strategies for dealing with racism and nonacceptance. (Contains 14 references.) (TD)
Descriptors: Aboriginal Australians, Allied Health Occupations Education, College Programs, Educational Environment, Equal Education, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Program Descriptions, Racial Bias, School Holding Power, School Orientation, Social Support Groups, Student Attitudes
For full text: http://www.swin.edu.au/aare/99pap/far99235.htm.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A