ERIC Number: ED216154
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Apr
Reference Count: 0
A Study of Factors Which Precipitate Adult Enrollment in a College Degree Program.
Sewall, Timothy J.
An investigation of events that cause adults to enroll in traditional college or university degree programs studied the general demographic characteristics of adult students, events that trigger adults to enter or reenter a bachelor's degree program, and the relationship between barriers to education and triggering events. In phase 1, 20 students participated in interviews whose results provided the basis for development of a questionnaire. Phase 2 was the pilot test of the instrument. In the full survey phase data from 906 returned surveys were analyzed. Results showed that 72% of the students were between ages 25-34, 61% were married, and 62% had children. Two-thirds were employed. Nearly two-thirds had attended college previously. Barriers to earlier enrollment included job and family responsibilities, lack of interest, and availability of funds. Adults' primary reason for pursuing a college degree was to improve and expand career opportunities. Triggers to college enrollment were job dissatisfaction, encouragement from others, available funds, children entering school, and realization that a college degree was necessary to achieve a personal goal. There appeared to be a strong relationship between reasons for delaying college entry and triggering events. (The survey is appended.) (YLB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Wisconsin Univ., Green Bay. Assessment Center.