Digitalising Student Support Spaces: The Key to Success in Australian Higher Education Institutions

Victoria University's Learning Hub and the Role of Digitalisation in Enhancing Student Support Ecosystems

As Australian higher education institutions embrace digitization, student support spaces have become a key focus to enhance academic success. Victoria University's Learning Hub serves as an exemplary model, offering a digital learning environment that empowers students in their academic journey.

To supplement the Learning Hub, Victoria University introduced Vygo, an online student support ecosystem app that provides real-time, personalized assistance, fostering collaborative learning and promoting online accessibility. Vygo's data-driven insights also help institutions identify areas of improvement and tailor their support services effectively.

Real-time Support: Vygo connects students with experienced mentors, offering real-time support on academic queries, assignments, and university system navigation. The platform's popularity among early childhood education students led to its full rollout, attracting nearly 1500 students and facilitating seamless transitions.

Personalized Support: Vygo's AI-powered algorithms offer personalized support, recommending academic resources, study materials, and career guidance. By connecting students with mentors based on shared interests, stronger mentor-mentee relationships have emerged. Vygo's auto-connect feature initiates communication, breaking down help-seeking barriers.

Collaborative Learning: Vygo's Group Sessions foster peer collaboration and learning, promoting better academic outcomes. Unlike previous attempts, Vygo's flexible approach ensures students' specific needs are addressed, leading to increased engagement and ongoing sessions in various disciplines.

Online Accessibility: Vygo's fully online platform enables students to access support services anytime, anywhere, aligning well with VU's block mode delivery. The chat function facilitates efficient communication between mentors and mentees, removing time and location barriers.

Data-driven Insights: Vygo's data-driven insights enable institutions to identify improvement areas and address student support effectively. Equity groups requiring additional support can be identified, ensuring equal opportunities for all students. The data also guides the setup of future Group Sessions, aligning support services with student demand.

Embracing digitization in student support spaces can foster an inclusive and equitable learning environment in Australian higher education. Victoria University's Vygo case study exemplifies how such digital tools can empower students and provide them with the resources needed for academic success.

Rob Worrell,
Student Mentor Coordinator - Victoria University.


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