ERIC Number: ED303210
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Studying Student Retention: The Requirements and Process of Retention Research.
Arguing that retention research requires a sound theoretical framework and that retention planning takes place within a sociopolitical context, this paper presents an overview of the requirements and process of student retention research. Part I examines the role of research in a college's retention effort and establishes the general requirements of retention research. Part II examines the sociological models of student departure developed by Spady, Tinto, and Pascarella, and discusses the longitudinal and interactive aspects of academic persistence. Part III discusses student and institutional variables relevant to the study of student attrition, including student satisfaction, peer group relations, and out-of-class interaction between students and faculty. This section also identifies four categories of students exhibiting different types of persistence behavior; i.e., persisters, stopouts, dropouts, and attainers. After part IV describes sources of data and means of collecting and analyzing them, part V discusses the development of a computerized student tracking system. It presents a database design that accomodates student flow, cohort tracking files, computer capacity, data manageability, and system outputs. The concluding section discusses sociopolitical considerations in the development of retention research and the ways in which the interactive dynamics among elements of the institution can constrain research efforts. (AAC)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Hawaii Univ., Honolulu. Office of the Chancellor for Community Colleges.
Note: Working paper prepared in conjunction with the Native Hawaiian Vocational Education Project, University of Hawaii Community Colleges.