ERIC Number: ED392907
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Focus Groups: An Active Learning Approach to Identifying Nontraditional Students' Needs.
Thirty-one female psychology students with a mean age of 31 years (all enrolled at a public liberal arts institution at which 49% of all students are over the age of 25) were invited to participate in a focus group to discover their perspective of the college experience and identify their concerns as nontraditional students. The group moderator used a four-question outline to guide the group's discussions while encouraging participants to direct the topics. Participants were encouraged to comment on all responses provided by the other group members. Four sessions were held, with an average of eight participants per session. Each session lasted approximately 1.5 hours. The students indicated their overall positive perspective of the college; however, they expressed concerns regarding advisement, registration, and financial aid. Their goals were related more to attaining their degree and obtaining career counseling rather than participating in typical "college activities." The study findings replicated those of a previous study of evening students. The focus group approach was concluded to be both a valuable instructional tool and a useful source of information for the college's administrators. (MN)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Focus Group Assessment
Note: Paper presented at the Annual American Psychology Society Institute on the Teaching of Psychology (2nd, New York, NY, July 1995).