ERIC Number: ED367034
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Differences Do Make a Difference: Recruitment Strategies for the Non-Traditional Student.
Many colleges and universities lack a comprehensive, fully integrated marketing plan to combat high attrition rates in programs offered to non-traditional students. A clear understanding of the needs of the marketplace is crucial to an effective marketing program. Research suggests that life transitions are what motivate adults to pursue education, that some non-traditional students report holding false expectations about college, and that non-traditional students decide to return to college and decide on a particular college at the same time. Barriers to success of nontraditional students include: sex and age quotas; financial aid practices; regulations; deficiencies in curriculum planning; and faculty and staff attitudes. Direct, specific recruitment seems to meet the needs of a population in search of retraining and may help universities face the realities of a stable or decreasing traditional population pool. Institutions can be placed in one of three stages: (1) laissez-faire (characterized by removal of barriers or constraints on adults); (2) separatist (adults given separate specially developed programs); and (3) equity (active recruitment of adult learners, a fully integrated curriculum, and services available evenings and weekends). A realistic awareness of the diversity of non-traditional students and what it means for the quality of the institution and the traditional student body is essential for marketing success. Educational institutions must learn to serve the students they now have and could have, not continue in ways that served those students they once had. (RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Communication Strategies; Institutional Responsiveness
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (79th, Miami Beach, FL, November 18-21, 1993).