Conference paper: 44th SEFI Conference, at Tampere, Finland.
The economic and financial crisis is having an important socio-economic effect in Europe and is threatening Europe’s economic growth model and employment and the sustainability of Europe’s welfare model. To counter the crisis, Europe should further evolve to a knowledge- driven and technology-based economy. This evolution however causes a rise in the demand for personnel with post-secondary education diploma, since many jobs in such a knowledge en technology-drive economy require at least a postsecondary education (Carnevale & Desrochers 2003). However, during the transition from secondary to higher education a lot of high-potential students drop out (Banger 2008). The transition to higher education is challenging both from the academic and social perspective (Tinto 1993). Firstly, students have to adjust to the life at the higher education institute, which is often totally different from living at home and going to secondary education. Secondly, the academic expectations of higher education are different than the ones from secondary education. Students have to evolve to independent learners that take their own responsibility for coping with the high study workload. This requires that first-year students in higher education have to go through a transition from learning dependence to learning autonomy.