ERIC Number: ED203809
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Removing Barriers to the Participation of Adult Learners in Higher Education. ASHE Annual Meeting 1981 Paper.
Hammer, Petra; Shale, Douglas
The effectiveness of open admissions and delivery of educational services at a distance in serving adult learners enrolled at Athabasca University, Alberta, Canada, was studied in 1979-80 through an analysis of demographic and geographic information on 2,491 students. Information was gathered on the following characteristics: sex, age, number of people in the household, educational preparation, occupations, reason(s) for pursuing a university education, geographic location, preference for various learning situations, and reason(s) for studying at Athabasca University. The majority of the university's students were 25 to 44 years old; 63 percent of its students were female and 37 percent were male. It was found that approximately 50 percent of the students attending the university benefited from the open admission policy. Eighteen percent of the students applied for advanced credits toward an undergraduate degree based on credit earned elsewhere. Less than one percent were able to take advantage of the absence of a residency requirement and earned enough credits through advanced credit assessment to be granted a bachelor of general studies degree. Thirty percent of the students were from geographically isolated regions. The fact that many of the students reside in large cities and big towns indicates that adult learners prefer the convenience of taking home study courses. The data suggest that distance education with new media and methods serves a new student population, including women and working people. A bibliography is appended. (SW)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: ASHE Annual Meeting; Athabasca University AB; Distance Education
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of Higher Education (Washington, DC, March 3-4, 1981).