DWU enrolment process in 2013

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Students and members of the public have made enquiries about the enrolment process at the Divine Word University for the 2013 academic year. Here, DWU’s Vice President for Student Affairs, Br Andrew Simpson provides details of the enrolment process and the general preparation the university has been going through in recent weeks.

Much has been happening at DWU for the commencement of the 2013 academic year. During the Christmas break the ongoing maintenance of lecture rooms and residential areas have been taking place.

There is also new construction work taking place as there are currently four construction projects around the campus with new staff housing, a new staff administration building, and the redevelopment of the DWU mechanical and timber workshops into a new site on campus.

Academic staff members are due to resume duty on Monday 28th January, 2013 and the week will be used for orienting staff to the coming academic year with formal staff activities, and also their individual preparations within their respective faculties. There are a number of new staff members in many academic disciplines and all have appropriate qualifications for their teaching areas.

The academic theme for the year is “Total Quality Assurance”. We will continue to implement the recommendations of the 2011 External academic Audit and we will maintain our policy to strengthen the quality of research within the university.

Since early January our Student Affairs division have been preparing for the arrival of students and commencement of the new year. We have prepared well and have the structures in place to make a good start to the 2013 academic year.

As a national institution DWU selects the majority of new students in the OHE Selection Process in December each year. In the selections for 2013 there were nearly 17,500 Grade12 students and this marked an increase of nearly 3,000 from the previous year. Despite the significant increase of students doing Grade 12 there was not an increase in the number of Government scholarships, thus contributing to the controversy of students missing out on selection.

There have been a number of letters in the paper about why students miss selection, and here have also been some criticism of DWU questioning selections.

 

  1. There is a clear criteria for selecting students and this criteria is set by both OHE to determine eligibility for scholarships, and by individual institutions to determine eligibility for entry into individual academic programs.
  2. The basic criteria for eligibility is the GPA of 2.25 set by OHE for eligibility to government sponsorship. Many parents and students believe that because they have received a GPA of 2.25 that they will be successful in their nominated choice. This is not the case because with a continued increase in students and no subsequent increase in scholarships, the student market is continually pushed higher. Hence at DWU some of our programs are reaching their targe at 2.6 or 2.7, well above the stated requirement of 2.25.
  3. Another factor contributing to missing selection is the individual requirement of academic programs. Applicants might have the required GPA, but not necessarily in the required subjects to support their nominated selection. Crucial for any student in the selection process is a good academic grade in both English and mathematics.
  4. Applicants also need to recognise that the social behaviours exhibited in their schools can affect the overall success of their enrolment application. Higher education institutions are wary of selecting applicants with inappropriate social behaviours and follow reports of school behaviour reported in the media.

Apart from the selection process for School Leavers, there are also the selections of Non School Leavers to balance this process. Because universities have not been able to increase the capacity for enrolments, the competitive market of Non School Leavers increases each year. This year at DWU we had over 6,500 Non School Leaver applications for a possible 150 possible student places.

People around the country are aware of the controversy about cheating by some schools in the 2012 Grade 12 Examination. An investigation is to be carried out by the Department of Education and this matter needs to be taken seriously. There have been allegations made against some of the nominated schools for a number of years.

There ought also to be a review of the capacity of the Measurement Services Branch within the investigation established into cheating.

  1. It is obvious that the source of the illegal cheating has to originate from someone inside MSB selling the exam papers.
  2. MSB is not coping with the overall examination and selection process and the production of results for the selection process. Some current issues are
    • The selection process should take place in the first week of December, yet it is being pushed back each year. In 2012 the selection process was held in the week before Christmas. Apart from the difficulties faced by institutions in logistics and processing selection results, the staff of OHE miss their family time for Christmas in trying to process the selections.
    • In 2012 over 150 senior staff from higher education institutions all over the country sat and waited for two days before the Grade 12 result were available to them.
    • It is reported that significant delays to results were caused by a consultant freezing the MSB computer and leaving the country because he had not been paid certain entitlements.
    • Most parents and Grade 12 students today do not know their actual grade 12 results because of the delay in printing Certificates. They have a right to know these results and it should have been done a lot sooner than now.
  3. There should also be a review of some institutions processing the student selections. A number of students with excellent academic grades missed selection because a major institution failed to release school leaver forms to second-choice selection until very late on the last day of the selection process. By this time most other institutions had completed their selections and left the selection room and it meant that many applicants were not considered for their second choice.

At DWU Madang Campus this year we are expecting 350 new students into our pre-service programs and another 150 students returning to resume their studies.

  • We will have approximately 1500 pre-service enrolled on Madang Campus and this will be approximately the same enrolment as 2012.
  • Whilst we did open five new residential dormitories, courtesy of the PNG Incentive Fund, the aim is to reduce over-crowding in the dormitories and to improve the quality of social life accommodation amongst students.
  • We do have an active plan for expansion of student enrolment and this will be achieved by refurbishment and development of the existing dormitories over the next couple of years in order to improve capacity for enrolments.

At St Benedict’s Campus we are expecting 280 new students and approximately 10 students resuming their studies.

  • Overall enrolment will be 500 students and this number equates with the same enrolment or 2012
  • Staff have commenced preparations this week and are currently starting the year with a retreat activity.
  • Preparation of the campus and maintenance of buildings has been progressing.

At our Rabaul Campus we are expecting an enrolment of approximately 1000 students, with no increase of enrolment at St Mary’s school of Nursing Vunapope and OLSH Teachers College Kabaleo

University Fees have been in a state of transition for the last four years as we have been leading towards having a common fee across all years, as the programs are degree programs. This process will be complete in 2014.

For 2013 the fees are:

  • Years One and Two: A fee of K7840.00 with K5140.00 payable on registration and the balance of K2700.00 by the beginning of the second semester. (If on HECAS the balance of K2700.00 will be met by HECAS)
  • Years Three and Four: A fee of K8500.00 with K5800.00 payable on registration and the balance of K2700.00 by the beginning of the second semester. (If on HECAS the balance of K2700.00 will be met by HECAS)
  • Non Residential Students: A fee of K5634.00 with K2934.00 payable on registration and the balance of K2700.00 by the beginning of the second semester. (If on HECAS the balance of K2700.00 will be met by HECAS)

Some students have arrived at the university already although residential facilities will not really open until Tuesday 29 January. Some continuing students are residing temporarily with relatives in town.

We do expect students to arrive for registration and we will commence registration, orientation and lectures commencing Monday 4 February. We believe in starting on time and we do follow our academic calendar.

On Friday 8 February we will have a formal ceremony for all students to open the 2013 academic year.

On Saturday 2 February we will commemorate first anniversary of the sinking of the MV Rabaul Queen with a candle-light ceremony. At DWU we lost four students and 15 relatives of staff and students in the sinking of the boat and we will remember the members of our community who suffered in this tragedy.

New students who are on HECAS are to collect their tickets from the local Air Niugini office.
Continuing Students in HECAS should contact Global travel Centre at DWU for their tickets.
Students who are self-sponsored should arrange their own travel to the university.

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