Staying the distance

Using digital readiness tools to support effective transitions into higher education for flexible learners


  • James Brunton
  • Mark Brown
  • Eamon Costello
  • Ann Cleary
  • Lorraine Delaney
  • Seamus Fox
  • Jennifer Gilligan
  • Lisa O'Regan
  • Jamie Ward



Flexible learning, study lifecycle, digital readiness/preparation tools, student success, Open Educational Resources


The Student Success Toolbox project is a nationally funded research and technology development project focusing on facilitating effective flexible learner transition into higher education. The project targets programme teams/institutions with adults engaged in undergraduate, part-time or online/distance-learning during the initial stages of the study lifecycle. The project has developed a toolbox of eight digital readiness/preparation tools, leveraging digital technologies to establish approaches to assist advisors in helping applicants to assess their own readiness for flexible learning and in providing learners with relevant, timely feedback to enhance their chances of success. These are Open Educational Resources (OERs) with a Creative Commons Licence (CCBY), made openly available to, and actively shared with, programme teams/institutions. Alongside the tools is a guide on using the tools as part of a strategic flexible learner socialisation program and, where appropriate, directions on technically augmenting the tools for a specific programme or institution.






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