1 National Center for External Evaluation of Education (CROATIA)
2 Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Dep. of psychology (CROATIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Pages: 2476-2483
ISBN: 978-84-614-2439-9
ISSN: 2340-1095
Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain
According to recent studies, transition and adjustment to a higher level of education during the first year of college is affected by various individual and environmental factors. Student Mentoring Programme was designed for improving adjustment to college and was offered to all freshmen.
In the first study we observed the characteristics of first year students who had decided to participate in the Student Mentoring Programme, comparing them with students who had decided not to participate in the programme. A total of 230 first year students with an average age of 19.02 participated in the study, in which we observed the differences regarding their initial adjustment (during their first month of college), personality and motivation. Evidence shows that reported general adjustment during the first month of college was very high. This study also revealed that the majority of students who decided to participate in Student Mentoring Programme are non-residential ones, and that students seeking mentoring support have reported more prominent fear of failure.
The aim of the present study was to observe students adjustment at the end of the first year of college and to find evidence which will support Student Mentoring Programme. A total of 104 first year students with an average age of 19.78 participated in the present study from which 27 of them were participants in our original study, and thus gave us some longitudinal insight. Student Mentoring Programme was designed as peer mentoring. Senior students were mentoring a group of first year students. After initial introduction to the programme (expectation workshops, mentor and mentee role and communication plan), mentoring groups were meeting at a regular basis (once a week in person, more often through e-mail) during the first academic year.
At the end of the first year of college, participants’ reported general adjustment was significantly lower than at the beginning of the year. There was a statistically significant difference in social, academic and emotional adjustment, with those adjustments being significantly lower at the end of the first academic year. Also, there was a significant difference in academic adjustment regarding the participation in the Mentoring Programme, where students who participated in the Mentoring Programme reported better academic adjustment than those who did not participate.
The results of this study reveal the nature of student college adjustment at the beginning and at the end of the first year of college, giving us guidelines for adjustment and further development of mentoring programs as a necessary support during first-year student transition.
Adjustment to college, student mentoring.