Many students do not complete their higher education (HE) studies but importantly a disproportionate number of these are from rural/remote areas. Too often it is the individual who is ‘blamed’ for this departure and perceived as ‘lacking’ the necessary knowledges. This research project, Shifts in Space and Self, sought to disrupt this deficit discourse by innovatively employing a digital storytelling methodology to investigate the subjective experience of this transition experience. Following one cohort of rural and remote students as they transition into and move through their first year of university studies. The project visually explored the ways in which: (a) how young people perceive their educational futures and (b) how students enter HE and the impacts this geographic shift has on their learner identities and links to the community.

This project is a collaboration between University of Wollongong, University of Newcastle and University of New South Wales, and funded by the National Centre for Student Equity in Higher Education (NCSEHE).