Viviene, Cree, Hazel, Christie and Lyn, Tett (2016) Relationships Matter: the Views of College Entrants to an Ancient Scottish University. Scottish Educational Review, 48 (1). pp. 89-99. ISSN 0141-9072

It is widely acknowledged that higher education in the UK is under pressure. As successive government’s policies have reinforced the idea that higher education is a market like any other, with students as consumers of packages of education, so the pedagogical relationships upon which education have been centred are stretched to breaking-point. But are relationships between staff and students really in jeopardy? This article will report on a longitudinal study of the experiences of students who entered directly from Scotland’s colleges into one ancient Scottish university. These students were followed through their degree programmes and a year after graduation using repeated questionnaires and interviews. In addition, a sub-sample has recently been interviewed ten years after the start of their studies. The research demonstrates that good relationships between staff and students and between students and their peers continue to matter, and that they are central to students’ well-being and success at university.

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