ERIC Number: ED231276
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
A Path Analytic Validation of Tinto's Theory of College Student Attrition.
Terenzini, Patrick T.; And Others
An earlier path analytic study of the predictive validity of Tinto's theory of college student attrition was replicated using an independent sample of students from another university. Tinto conceived of the attrition/retention process as a series of sociopsychological interactions between the characteristics students bring with them to college and their experiences while enrolled. Usable responses to a questionnaire were received from 1,105 college freshmen at summer orientation, and after the first academic year 723 freshmen were assessed. Attention was directed to the major constructs of Tinto's model: background characteristics, including family background, individual attributes, and pre-college schooling; academic aspiration; commitment to staying at the college; and academic and social integration. With some few exceptions, the results are consistent with those of the earlier work and with theoretical expectations based on the model. A significant compensatory interaction between levels of goal and institutional commitment were found, indicating that institutional commitment had its greatest positive influence on retention for students with comparatively low levels of commitment to completing a college degree, and vice versa. (SW)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Tinto Theory
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Montreal, Canada, April 11-15, 1983).