They led a discussion on current best practice in the FYHE framed by key known emphases such as fostering academic, social, professional and institutional connectedness (Lizzio, 2006) and psychosocial wellbeing (Donnison, Opescu, & Penn-Edwards, 2013).
CommUniTI members mentioned that this approach to the FYHE was challenged by time factors, particularly, the time required to source and contact appropriate members for the CoP, establish and facilitate the CoP and time required to attend and contribute to meeting, "we needed more time, more meetings, more ground work...
In the following we discuss what these findings and the initial survey, focus groups and interviews tell us about the 4th Generation Approach to the FYHE. Our discussion draws upon the social capital foundations of the approach and makes links to the 3rd Generation Approach (Kift, Nelson & Clarke, 2010).
The 3rd Generation Approach to the FYHE advocated for a coordinated, whole of institution approach (Nelson, Kift & Clark, 2010).
Our approach to the FYHE draws upon the student's social capital in the formation of a CoP tasked with conceptualising transition strategies.
More time must be spent, prior to establishing a CoP, to build relationships with the students, their families and friends; to provide opportunities for them to visit and familiarise themselves with the campus and to provide time for communication about higher education and especially the FYHE. Unfortunately, time is a commodity in short supply in academia.
For instance, a FY course coordinator or FYA who might also be a Rotary member, sporting coach or school committee member and who could draw upon their social connections in the formulation of FYHE strategies.
We argue that the 4th Generation Approach to the FYHE has merit.