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ERIC Number: EJ795791
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 24
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 23
ISSN: ISSN-1542-3077
Connections and Reflections: Creating a Positive Learning Environment for First-Year Students
Donahue, Lynn
Journal of The First-Year Experience & Students in Transition, v16 n1 p77-100 2004
Research on first-year students' perceptions of their learning environments revealed the aspects of their experiences that enhanced and hindered their learning. End of the semester reflection essays from first-year seminars were analyzed to ascertain students' views. Data analysis revealed that students need peers who provide personal and intellectual support, faculty who are personable and approachable, courses that encourage connections and community, and co-curricular activities that create common bonds and out of the classroom learning. This study confirmed prior research that looked at the central role student connections and involvement play in their first-year experience. In addition, it focused on the reflection process itself and its potential to give students a voice, enable them to articulate and understand the importance of connections, and lead to improvements in their learning environment.
National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition. University of South Carolina, 1728 College Street, Columbia, SC 29208. Tel: 803-777-6229; Fax: 803-777-4699; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York