A Small Town Mindset Is A Cause Of Low Participation By Rural Australian Students

1473 Words Jan 15th, 2016 null Page
In 2001, it was suggested by the Times Higher Education that a ‘small town mindset’ is a cause of low participation by rural Australian students in university. This essay will argue that a ‘small town mindset’ does influence rural student’s university participation to some degree, however other factors like farming needs, school achievement, and financial requirements also impact their decision to attend university. It will explore what exactly a ‘small town mindset’ is, as well as talking about the reasons rural youth choose to stay at home rather than attend university and whether or not a small town mindset is the main influencer.
Distance is potentially the most obvious factor to deter rural students from attending university, with most of the universities in Australia focussed around the coastline. For a rural student, attending an urban university can be a tiring and expensive experience, as well as being emotionally difficult, with many students being forced to leave family and friends behind. However, previous research suggests that the lack of university applications from rural students is not predominantly an issue of distance from universities, and that other issues form the bulk of the factors which deter students from attending universities, such as the amount of encouragement they receive, their school achievements, and the type of town that they live in.
Rural communities are incredibly tight-knit, and for a lot of students, moving away from home can be very…

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