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South African Journal of Childhood Education

On-line version ISSN 2223-7682
Print version ISSN 2223-7674


ARENDS, Delia  and  PETERSEN, Nadine F.. The role of first-year experience excursion in promoting social integration at university: Student teachers' views. SAJCE [online]. 2018, vol.8, n.1, pp.1-9. ISSN 2223-7682.

BACKGROUND: The Faculty of Education at the University of Johannesburg, like many other universities worldwide, has a strong focus on first-year experience programmes to promote student academic and social enculturation AIM: In this article, we report on students' views of the role of an education excursion as cohesive device. We were particularly interested in how students establish social relationships with peers, and the values they attribute to these connections over time for their incorporation into university SETTING: The education excursion consists of a specially designed curriculum in the two day programme, off campus, as an extension of the initial first year seminar METHODS: Using methods associated with longitudinal studies, we collected data via a biographical survey and questionnaire for first years, followed by dyadic interviews with a purposive sample of students 30 months later. Qualitative content analysis led to several findings RESULTS: First-year data reveal that students face many challenges to their integration and that the excursion helps them traverse their individual racial, cultural and religious and language differences. Third years communicate the lasting effects of the excursion on their social and academic integration into university CONCLUSION: The authors conclude that the excursion has long-term value for students' social integration into the university environment and for bridging the gap between the university lecturers and the students

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