The first step: pre-registration students’ experiences of recruitment and admission to programmes of study

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The aim of this paper is to share the findings of a survey we conducted with pre-registration BSc Adult and Mental Health nursing students, and BSc and MSc Midwifery students, regarding their experiences of the recruitment process at our institution.


The University of the West of Scotland (UWS) is Scotland's largest modern university with the largest School of Health. There are approximately 4100 full or part time students studying at one of four campus sites across the West of Scotland, and our campus in London. In September 2016, 746 new students began on pre-registration programmes of study across our four campuses in Scotland (BSc Adult Nursing, Mental Health Nursing, Midwifery or MSc Midwifery). Our School were keen to evaluate our recruitment and admissions processes with a view to streamlining working practices.

The methodology we used was that of a survey. An electronic questionnaire was sent via email to all 746 students at the end of the induction week, with a reminder email sent two weeks later. Announcements were put on the School’s twitter feed and a Facebook page used in the nursing programmes. Only quantitative data were collected.


A total of 227 students completed the questionnaire (30.4%). Early analysis indicate that over 66% of the respondents did not attend an open information day event and that over 48% of people never used a printed prospectus in aidingthem with course selection, however, 98% looked at the UWS website. Over 90% stated they felt prepared and understood what was expected of them on the testing and interview day. 68% stated that the recruitment and admissions process either had some, or a large, influence on their decision to study with our institution, with over 51% of the students also identifying campus location as a large influencing factor. Overall, 94% were either satisfied or very satisfied with their experience of our recruitment and admission processes.


Preliminary results would indicate that when considering course selection, prospective students are seeking information from the internet. It can also be seen that on the testing/interview days, the majority of students felt informed, prepared, welcomed and supported. Whilst campus location has influenced this current cohort of students, a more interesting result is the apparent impact that the recruitment and admissions process itself may have played in their decision to study at this institution.

Intended learning outcomes
1.Understand that the vast majority of students were overall satisfied or very satisfied with their first steps into a career in nursing or midwifery
2.Appreciate the significance recruitment and admissions processes may have on student’s decisions to study at a particular institution
3.Recognise that fewer students appear to be looking at printed prospectuses when considering a course of study and therefore it may be beneficial to improve online resources instead.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 21 Mar 2017
EventRCN Education Forum International Conference and Exhibition - Cardiff City Hall, Cardiff, United Kingdom
Duration: 21 Mar 201722 Mar 2017


ConferenceRCN Education Forum International Conference and Exhibition
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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