EARLY IDENTIFICATION OF UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY (UOT) ENGINEERING STUDENTS AT RISK

The predictive value of Grade 12 results obtained for the South African National Senior Certificate (NSC) is not as powerful in predicting study success as initially thought. Higher Education (HE) institutions therefore have to be more resourceful in their admission and placement processes to ensure students end up in appropriate courses. At the Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa, student achievement data of the 2009 and 2010 cohorts during their first two semesters were used to establish a model that can accurately predict the success of students in the National Diploma. Another important aim of this study was to investigate the
early identification of students that are at risk. The results indicate that the NSC has limited predictive power. It was found that the percentage of subjects passed after one semester of study is an excellent predictor of the total percentage of subjects a student will pass after four semesters. The implications for the institution are that early identified students should receive additional support if the institution is serious about turning access into success.

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