ERIC Number: ED267257
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Nontraditionals in a Traditional Setting: Why Older Adults Return to College.
Sewall, Timothy J.
An investigation of the circumstances that lead to older adults enrolling in traditional college or university degree programs involved a secondary analysis of data collected as part of a larger study conducted in Fall 1981. The analysis was limited to degree-seeking students at least 35 years of age. Nearly three-fourths of the survey respondents were between 25 and 34 years of age. After age 35, women were much more likely to enroll in a college degree program than were men. Most attended school part-time and had attended a college or technical school prior to their current period of enrollment. Family and job responsibilities were the most frequently cited reasons for delaying the completion of a degree. The reasons for delaying college work varied with age. A significant majority returned to college to improve their job and career opportunities. Adults in the 35 or older category were less likely than the younger adult students to cite "develop a new career" as a goal. While events that trigger an adult to enroll in degree programs were very diverse, circumstances related to job or family account for a significant majority of the reasons cited for returning to school. (YLB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (San Francisco, CA, April 1986).