ACADEMIC LEVELING PROGRAM: FINDINGS OF AN INTERVENTION PROGRAM ON SOCIALLY VULNERABLE STUDENTS AT UNIVERSIDAD DE CONCEPCIÓN
ABSTRACT: This paper presents the findings of the assessment of 120 students’ academic performance, who benefited from an academic leveling program implemented by the University of Concepción. The purpose of this program is to support the stay and to improve the academic performance of first year university students of socioeconomic vulnerable origin. A quantitative methodology was used and a correlational study was defined; the results show the stay reached 87%, while participants’ averaged grade was 5.1 on a scale from 1 to 7. This allows improving participants’ past results and accomplishing the expected indicators. The study habits test proved to be the best predictor of academic achievement. These results were complemented by two focus groups that show the students’ high value of the program as a facilitating instance of their adaptation to the university demands. Finally, there is a reflection on public policies that seek to strengthen higher education equity in Chile.