Figures released by the South African Department of Higher Education and Training in 2013 put the graduation rate at 15 percent among undergraduate students in our 23 public universities. Even the students with multiple distinctions in matric/grade 12 battle to succeed in university. What is going on here?
Most students fail to grasp that you are officially on your own once you enter the university world. You are responsible for everything. You have to declare a major and pick your classes, most likely not knowing the post university career options and how prevalent they are. Then there are the smaller, but not less important details like getting your assignment in on time. Mom, dad and/or teacher are not there applying pressure, reminding and telling you what to do. In fact, the professor will be very pleased if you don’t turn in your assignment because this means one less paper to mark. All of this requires self-discipline, organisation and time management. Did you get this while studying matric?
Being a university student means being more independent and doing whatever you want to do, but they must be prepared to accept responsibility for their actions. It sounds simple, however, when surrounded by temptations and distractions it becomes very easy to neglect academic demands and other beneficial opportunities available on campus.
Then of course you have the academic side associated with university, and yes it is much more difficult compared to high school. This is combined with less interaction with the teacher. Classes also typically require several hours of work each week or even per night in order to complete assignments. What this means is study and research skills and the ability to motivate yourself are critical to student success.
If you worry that your son or daughter might be one of the students falling into the 85% failure category, enroll them in AERLA’s bridging course today!
The AERLA bridging course is designed for recent matriciants/high school graduates to improve their academic/life skills and provide knowledge in key subject areas while also giving insight into the expectations of university study and applicable industries.
To reinforce what is taught in the classroom, students participate in many outside activities such as field trips to nearby universities, aerospace facilities and industries, civilian airports and other related areas.
Full summary of the AERLA bridging course can be downloaded by clicking here (pdf format): AERLA Bridging Course