Support for online students: Reducing attrition
Abstract: Australia has seen significant increase in online enrolments in recent years; however, non-completions and early attrition of online students are often above 30% (TEQSA attrition report, 2017). This raises several issues for institutions including financial costs associated with dropouts, failure and non-continuation, potential institutional reputational damage and the need to meet TEQSA threshold standard requirements to demonstrate parity between face-to-face and online instruction. Several Australian institutions have taken affirmative action to address these issues. One such approach is to provide proactive and one-to-one personalised academic assistance anchored in specialised technology-assisted student engagement strategies delivered by qualified academics. This paper explores the nature of the student cohort, the supports provided and the outcomes.