ERIC Number: ED024342
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1968-Nov-12
Reference Count: 0
What are We Learning from Current University Programs for Disadvantaged Students?
Williams, Robert L.
Over 50% of American universities have special programs for high risk or disadvantaged students, most of whom come from different ethnic or cultural backgrounds and whose educational and economic background is considered markedly inferior to that of regular university students. Many of these programs, however, are token efforts, e.g., 100 high risk students in a student body of 20,000. Although the most common characteristic of high risk students is a lack of funds, their economic deficiency should not be equated with lower academic proficiency. Directors of some significant programs report that the academic mortality rate for disadvantaged students has been no higher than that of regular students. Some major features of these programs are financial aid, special housing, special courses, small group instruction, tutorial assistance, personal counseling, compensatory study in language arts, and an extended time period to obtain a degree. It is difficult, though to determine what specific factors are responsible for success or failure. If high risk programs are to succeed, they must be supported by the students involved and administrators responsible for decisions on money and staff, and faculties must be trained to communicate with disadvantaged students. Integrating the disadvantaged with regular students in class and housing is as educationally important as the curriculum. Apathy within the university must end, to prevent further waste of human resources and social discord. Data are based on replies from 159 major colleges and universities. A summary is attached of individual university programs for disadvantaged students. (WM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Tennessee Univ., Knoxville.
Note: Paper presented to the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges, Washington, D.C., November 12, 1968.