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An investigation of the sociocultural factors impacting on the transition to higher education by Nigerian nursing students in the UK via the use of Lego® serious play® methodology

Ajibade, Benjamin Olusola (2020) An investigation of the sociocultural factors impacting on the transition to higher education by Nigerian nursing students in the UK via the use of Lego® serious play® methodology. Doctoral thesis, University of Sunderland.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)


Britain is historically the first country of choice for Nigerian students regarding overseas Higher Education and was the UK's third-largest international student cohort in the UK (Jubb, 2017). There has been an increase in the number of students from non-EU countries coming to the UK to study, and this might be increased due to uncertainties surrounding a potential exit of Brexit. This might lead to a decrease in the number of EU countries, and potentially, a large proportion of those places might be taken up by Nigerian students instead.
This research project investigates the concept of internationalisation of the curriculum (IoC) in relation to the capacity that students have to adapt and transition into the UK Higher Education system. This project aims to investigate the sociocultural factors impacting on the transition to Higher Education of Nigerian Nursing Students including language, socio and cultural shock, learning approach, equality, safety and length of the transition period. Most Universities in the UK have developed their internationalisation of curriculum (IoC) that is bespoke to their institution and departments in response to HE policymakers. Therefore, there is no single universally accepted IoC due to content specificity of HE and different demographics in UK HEIs.
A qualitative research methodology was used in this research with the use of the interpretive phenomenological approach. Qualitative research data was collected using the LEGO® Serious Play® method to facilitate story making through personal storytelling and metaphor by building a 3-D model resulting in the development of themes to inform the results and subsequent discussion. The participants are composed of alumni international nursing students of Nigerian origin who had undergone the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes at a University campus in London. Ethical approval was obtained from the University X, and informed consent was assured from all the participants. Quirkos was used to analyse the collected data and to identify the most salient themes from the results of data collection.
The result of the research showed that some of the factors that impact Nigeria students in the UK HEIs are based on their experience back home, which they transferred to their learning in the UK. The fear instilled by Nigerian lecturers back in Nigeria is the most salient factor that impacts Nigerian nursing students transition in the UK HE education due to their sociological background from Nigeria context; followed by the ambiguity of curricula including ambiguity in the articulation of the curriculum because there are some uncertainties in the curriculum which are not in the public domain and these being interpreted by each academics back in Nigeria in the way they feel. Furthermore, other factors include threatening behaviour from Nigerian lecturers, non-supportive Nigerian lecturers, nursing student misuse and lack of IT technology.
The factors that impede students learning in the UK HEIs include the transfer of the students fear from Nigeria to the UK Higher Education, weather, cultural shock and the impact of university administration services. Culture and women's self-esteem, immigration- thick red tug of war a metaphorical statement by the participants to represent the problems faced about immigration issues, accommodation, supportive family, financial issues, cultural attachment theory are also some of the important factors that potentially impact upon their successful transition. Other factors include climbing the ladder to transition, completing assignments on the computer, family responsibilities and commitment, compressed assignment timelines as a consequence of bridging module. Also, the gap between taught and self-directed learning/independent learning, repetition of assignment questions and UK practice focused assessments, racism for being black, mode of dressing in the UK and own barriers to learning.
The study i experiences have the potential to influence the current pedagogical experience, in accordance with the principles of social constructivism. Finally, it was revealed the transition period of entry to UK education varied between individuals, and these could be between four and six months for a programme that will finish in one year.
The recommendations could clearly be delineated into two clear strands, for action at University X. he Assessment submissions are too tightly compressed in terms of their relative timing, increasing the academic teaching personnel ought to be subject to the University dissertation training strategy to enable common ground for all lecturers, to ensure consistency in supervisory capacity across the module. Enveloping different but equal assessment questions for different groups/cohorts to reduce plagiarism and Turnitin similarities, with markers aligning their marking processes to the liminal level Nigerian students studying in the UK can be clearly identified. In terms of interpersonal relationships with stude knowledge, the introduction of mentorship, peer observations, and one-to-one sessions with the constructive criticism are undoubtedly necessary, but this should not become a perceptibly threatening exercise for students. In order to ease the transitions of international students into new contexts and settings, universities ought also to consider increasing recruitment of staff, who have authentically experienced this themselves. By ensuring some representation of lecturing staff from countries other than those represented by the UK, a more authentic approach can be given to the process of student transitions. Also, the universities should recruit more lecturers from a minority background who transition from other countries to the UK. This will ease the transition for students with the aim of co-constructing knowledge with people they can empathise with rather than sympathise with their position and increase the contact hours with students - -directed learning hours need to be reduced. This could help Nigerian international students transition far more easily into the current infrastructures within which they are expected to adjust. Finally, a dedicated university student liaison officer who has good multicultural and international experience should be employed by Universities with the role of easing Nigerian transitions from a sociocultural perspective in addition to tailored academic support.

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Depositing User: Leah Maughan


Item ID: 12554

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Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2020 08:22
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2020 10:46


Author: Benjamin Olusola Ajibade

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