Table 4

Detailed staff and student findings with exemplar quotes

Establishing staff support in the Gateway programme: experiencing positive transitions through educational environments and supporting progression
Staff supporting development of peer networks‘Yeah, so we all got, like, talking and we got coordinated who’d bring what. And it, it was nice. It alleviated a lot of, like, stress and nerves having kind of, like, semi met you all before moving in. But that was good’ (Female student, cohort 1)Student
Staff supporting academic transitions‘They, like, arrange sessions for you to go in and just get, like … You can have, you know, little small groups or one to one. And clear up anything you’re unsure of, like, straight away. And they’re always really, always really wanting to do that. They’re always encouraging of that. But yeah, they’re always wanting to help’ (Female student, cohort 1)
‘Like I say, the tutor’s been doing different things to what I expected, but the tutor is seeing them regularly and doing the pastoral side really thoroughly; having one to one meetings with them all rather than seeing them as a group, because people tend not to tell you stuff—well, some people tend not to tell you stuff unless they’re on their own. I think that’s been very useful’ (Staff interviewee 1)
Student and staff
Developing peer support networks: experiencing positive transitions through educational environments, feeling and developing confidence
Developing peer support networks out with the Gateway programme‘Yeah, if you were part of a society that [sic] you would’ve met people, so then you’d meet them in the lecture as well’ (Male student, cohort 2)Student
Developing peer support networks within the Gateway programme‘I felt comfortable because we had that college experience, so you’ve got someone to be within [sic] the university, so it didn’t really bother me that much’ (Female student, cohort 2)
‘They have established a good cohesion among them, so they help each other with extra-curricular activity but also with the teaching, you know the study commitment they have. I think this could work in term … You know when they will be in a big class of 120 or 200 students, they’re able to recognise each other and if something came up as a difficulty or whatever they have already a well-established network of people because as you know coming from this kind of different background’ (Staff interviewee 2)
Student and staff
Development of professionalism and identity (young adult, university and medical student): establishing self-belief and sense of belonging
Developing identity as a university student‘Yeah, we never get told that we’re uni students as well, I don’t know if you guys … I pick up on it quite a lot, it’s one of the things that really annoys me, they don’t … they never treat … well yeah, they don’t treat us like uni students but they don’t call us it either, so they’ll be like, they’ll say, “Oh, you’re not at a secondary school, you’re at NESCOL”, they’re never say, “You guys are uni students”’ (Female student, cohort 3)
‘So I think that’s a good thing as well because again it was people from the university that they were introduced to that they would maybe not have come across otherwise at that stage so it was those links again because of the way we’ve timetabled the college one semester, university the second semester, kind of trying to make sure that they didn’t feel to divorced from the others. From that first few months’ (Staff interviewee 3)
Student and staff
Developing identity as a professional‘It’s been amazing, for me, like I’ve came from my Highers, and I’m still 17, and I’ve got more medical experience than most medical students will have, going into that, and as part of the university and maturity’ (Male student, cohort 1)
‘That (Healthcare Support Worker role) is such a useful thing and it worked pretty well the first year. Lots of the students were attracted by that to start off with and it gives them financial support and it is really good at giving them an insight into what they’re going to be doing, I think it give them … they feel they’re better off than the other students when they start medicine because they’ve already been in that sort of clinical environment and talking to patients. I think most of them are very comfortable at that’ (Staff interviewee 1)
Student and staff
Developing identity as a medical student‘I want to go into the exam with the mentality to prove to myself that I am meant to do medicine, that I’m good enough to do medicine, that I should be allowed into the course’ (Female student, cohort 3)Student
Developing identity as a young adult‘It was a success in term to see them behave as an adult, you know? Completely an adult’ (Staff interviewee 2)Staff
Experience of a tailored and relevant Gateway curriculum: enhancing confidence and preparedness, and experience of smooth educational transitions
Scaffolded learning throughout Gateway to support transitions‘Yes, more so than coming out of school because we’ve experienced lectures, taking notes in lectures, the pace of lectures you know will be …Well, it’s a lot more faster, it’s a lot faster than school, so that’s provided a lot more insight into being a medical student really’ (Male student, cohort 1)
‘It is useful in being a small step from school and they are taught of manner that they’re taught at school, but then they’ve had to cope with, most of them, with moving because most of them don’t live at home so they’ve had to do the bit about eating and washing and learning all of that stuff as well. I think it is good that that’s a small step, but I think that they feel fairly quickly that they haven’t come to university in that first half session. Well, they haven’t really. Fairly soon they don’t feel that was a big enough step, but I think I prefer that than the other way round; if they were thrown into university classes of 200 or something in the first year and they don’t know who their little group are and they haven’t got someone who’s monitoring whether they’re there at each class session. I still think that’s a useful steppingstone in reducing the size of those transitions, I think is still useful and yeah, at the moment I’m quite happy that they’re ready to leave’ (Staff interviewee 1)
Student and staff
Provision of cocurricular activities and practical sessions which enable students to develop knowledge and skills to help them in making an application to medicine‘We, we’d done that much like presentation-wise, speaking, you know, out-wise, um and also we were doing all the mock stuff. We’ve done like two mock MMIs … I’ve done that much going up to MMI that I knew exactly what was going to happen, and what it was going to be like’ (Male student, cohort 1)
‘I think there is that bit about expectations and being in a position to perform well in the interview and in the UCAT and there’s lots of stuff that they don’t know and there’s no reason why they should be expected to know it, they probably haven’t had the background support at home and at school to help them with that’ (Staff interviewee 1)
Student and staff
Using Gateway as an opportunity to test suitability for a career in medicine‘I was surprised when we asked students what they thought of the course at the end of the first year, a few of them said that they liked it as an opportunity to find out if they wanted to do medicine, so they weren’t taking it as starting the G2M course as being the commitment that I’m going to do medicine’ (Staff interviewee 1)Staff
Refinement of Gateway curriculum based on student feedback‘So for this reason, after receiving a lot of feedback from the students, after discussing a lot with [FE College] people which are the best options to offer them, we have identified a couple of different courses that can be introduced into the actual curriculum to replace the previous one. Now we have a comprehensive curriculum where NESCOL is able to offer us the kind of courses that we think are useful to fill any gaps’ (Staff interviewee 2)Staff
Geographical familiarity: experiencing smooth educational transitions
Familiarity with the university environment‘Especially, even at [the halls], even walking around, getting around, where to go, things like that. The lecturers, who they are, the kind of teaching style, actually learning at uni, I feel like I’ve done pre-med’ (Male student, cohort 1)
‘Yes, we had the opportunity to create tailored activities with them just because there is this transition times from medical school to the university. So it’s good to then be actually in a way familiar with the university and the kind of information they need because probably they won’t be just in a building like here but they will be you know in the whole campus in Aberdeen, many different locations. They have to know how to know where to go, how to ask’ (Staff interviewee 2)
Student and staff
Familiarity with the city‘… the location of [College], because it’s closer to town, we got to know that town really well’ (Male student, cohort 3)Student
Provision of financial support: establishing financial security during studies
Opportunity to secure relevant paid work experience in Gateway and beyond‘… the paid work experience and the small-group learning as well. It just ticks a lot more boxes than your general undergraduate course’ (Female student, cohort 1)
‘That (Healthcare Support Worker) is such a useful thing and it worked pretty well the first year. Lots of the students were attracted by that to start off with and it gives them financial support’ (Staff interviewee 1)
Student and staff
Provision of bursaries during Gateway‘… the bursary and stuff like that makes it more manageable to afford to, like, study. And so that kind of pulls you towards applying’ (Male student, cohort 1)Student