Student engagement for successful learning
February 15, 2024
Achievement is the outcome. The means to get there is through student engagement.

Pedro Noguera

I want to graduate! I want to be successful! I want children to look to me as their role model! If I want all of this, I need to be actively engaged in my studies at SANTS.

If I am an engaged or involved student, I will experience a sense of ownership in my academic career because I am in control of how successful I will be. Being engaged helps me feel that I belong somewhere and that, together with other serious-minded students, we can make a real difference.

So what must I do to be an actively engaged student at SANTS?

Firstly, I need to be motivated. I can do this by creating a goal for myself and then breaking it up into smaller goals that I know I can achieve, step by step.

Then I need to engage with the resources I have โ€“ reading my Curriculum and Learning Guide (CLG), completing the activities in the CLG, discussing what I read and learn with other students or teachers. I can see what additional resources I find on MySANTS and in my online library (EBSCOhost).

When I get stuck, I can ask my lecturers questions on the Enquiry platform of MySANTS.

When the Assessment Support Guidelines (ASG) are available after an assignment, I will read it carefully to know what I did correctly and what I need to change the next time I submit an assessment.

I will empower myself with other reliable resources and get to know the policies at SANTS such as the Assessment Policy and Procedures. I will share my knowledge with others and make sure that they know what it means to be academically honest and ethical.

When SANTS asks me for my opinion and suggestions through its surveys each semester, I will answer to the best of my ability. By doing this, I can ensure that the students who study after me, have an even better experience of their studies than me and have my voice be heard.

Ultimately, I will engage actively during my Workplace Integrated Learning (WIL) experiences at schools. I will ask questions, volunteer to help and do the best for the children I am serving as a student teacher.

Two strategies to help engagement (with the institution and peers)

  • Active engagement

As a student I can actively engage by making notes on the content in the CLGs, asking lecturers questions on the MySANTS enquiry platform when I require a more in-depth explanation of work I might not understand. I can also be aware of my weaknesses and continually try to improve on them. I must also make an effort to read through the content consistently so that I am able to grasp concepts effectively for assignments and before exams. I must try by all means to cultivate a conducive environment for studying and completing assignments by cleaning up my space and limiting distractions prior to study sessions.

  • Time engagement

Time engagement as a student involves allocating a few hours per day to go through

the course content in the CLGs. I must prioritise studying ahead of the time of my

exams so that I can take my time understanding the work thoroughly.

Research has indicated a link between student engagement and academic achievement, demonstrating a clear correlation between the two.1 Therefore, engaging in your studies isnโ€™t just about ticking off tasks, it kindles a lifelong journey of learning. When you are actively engaged in your education, it fosters curiosity, critical thinking, and a deeper understanding of the world. Embracing this engagement is an investment in a brighter, more informed future for

yourself and the world around you.

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far go together. (African Proverb)

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1 De Villiers, B. & Werner, A. (2018). The relationship between student engagement and academic success. Journal for New Generation Sciences, 14(1), 36; Wawrzynski, M.R., Heck, M.R. & Remley, C.T. (2012). Student engagement in South African Higher Education. International Research, 53(1),106-123.

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SANTS Academic Quality Enhancement Unit

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