Managing and Supporting Student Diversity in Higher Education

1st Edition

A Casebook

Authors: Robyn Benson Margaret Heagney Lesley Hewitt Glenda Crosling Anita Devos
Paperback ISBN: 9781843347194
eBook ISBN: 9781780633855
Imprint: Chandos Publishing
Published Date: 31st July 2013
Page Count: 254
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Table of Contents



About the authors

Chapter 1: Setting the context



International trends supporting widening participation in higher education

Theoretical perspectives underpinning social inclusion

Opportunities and challenges

Strategies for improving access and retention

How students from diverse backgrounds succeed in higher education: an overview

Using participatory research and the student’s voice to inform decision-making

An introduction to the cases


Chapter 1: discussion topics

Chapter 2: Finding the way to higher education: Miranda and Rochelle



Miranda’s story

Educational experiences

Managing study



Reflections and future plans

Rochelle’s story

Educational experiences

Managing study


Reflections and future plans

Implications for managing and supporting student diversity: transition to higher education and the first year experience


Chapter 2: discussion topics

Chapter 3: This time it’s different: Sesh and Shannon



Sesh’s story

Shannon’s story

Implications for managing and supporting student diversity: student retention


Chapter 3: discussion topics

Chapter 4: The international experience: Lam and Zelin



Lam’s story

Zelin’s story

Implications for managing and supporting student diversity: international students


Chapter 4: discussion topics

Chapter 5: Coming to education later in life: Alex Carole and Virginia



Alex Carole’s story

Virginia’s story

Implications for managing a


Government initiatives in many countries emphasise social inclusion in higher education, resulting in a more diverse student population. This presents opportunities and challenges for academic and professional staff in managing and supporting these students. Managing and Supporting Student Diversity in Higher Education focuses on how students succeed amidst a culture of widening participation. The book is divided into seven chapters. The first introduces current literature and policies to present an international perspective on widening participation in higher education. The following five chapters present students’ stories on topics including getting into higher education, the international experience, coping with education later in life, and identity. Stories are followed by implications for management and support, and discussion topics for practitioners. The book concludes by looking at how students succeed in higher education and the implications for managing and supporting student diversity.

Key Features

  • Provides an accessible and practical resource using students’ own voices
  • Emphasises how students from diverse backgrounds succeed in higher education
  • Offers in-depth personal insights into issues facing learners from diverse backgrounds


Teaching and professional staff in higher education, including central support staff, learning advisors, and librarians


No. of pages:
© Chandos Publishing 2013
Chandos Publishing
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About the Authors

Robyn Benson Author

Dr Benson is a Senior Lecturer in Educational Design and e-Learning at Monash University, Australia. She has an extensive background in adult education, distance education and the use of educational technologies in higher education. She has initiated the design and development of many ‘workbooks’ to support academic professional development workshops on aspects of teaching, and to act as standalone resources for staff. Recent workbooks have included an orientation to educational design and e-learning, and covered specific issues relating to online communication and online assessment.

Margaret Heagney Author

Margaret Heagney is a student equity consultant and Adjunct Research Fellow in the Faculty of Education, Monash University. Her current research interests are retention of students from diverse backgrounds, equitable selection systems and equity for postgraduate students.

Lesley Hewitt Author

Lesley Hewitt is a former social work lecturer at Monash University and is currently working in disability.

Glenda Crosling Author

Glenda Crosling is Professor and Senior Academic Advisor at Sunway University in Malaysia, and Adjunct Associate Professor in the Office of the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Teaching), Monash University, Australia. Currently, Glenda’s research interests are transnational higher education, innovation and creative thinking.

Anita Devos Author

Anita Devos is an Adjunct Research Fellow, and former Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, Monash University. Anita’s research interests include issues of gender, identity and learning in contemporary society, and doctoral education. She currently works as a consultant to organisations on equity and diversity issues.

Affiliations and Expertise

Monash University, Australia