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ERIC Number: ED313974
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Nov
Pages: 28
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
A Key to Survival: The Retention of Adult Students in an External Degree Program. ASHE Annual Meeting Paper.
McCaffrey, Suzanne
A study investigating the usefulness of a model of student persistence in external degree programs (developed from the Bean and Metzner 1985 model) is discussed. Sample students aged 23 or older who were matriculated in such a program were used, as it was noted that the attrition rate for nontraditional students is higher than for traditional students. The model contained the following variables in the prediction of persistence: background; environment; academics; psychological outcomes; academic outcomes; and intent to persist. By investigating these variables for students in external degree programs, it is possible to make it more probable that such students will obtain a baccalaureate degree. All students enrolled in the external degree program at Caldwell College, New Jersey were sent a questionnaire measuring several independent variables (academic advisement, faculty interaction, finances, outside encouragement, outside commitment, utility, stress, satisfaction, and intent to persist). Study results attest to the usefulness of the Bean and Metzner model. Results include the following: (1) students presenting previous college credits upon matriculation and those who were encouraged by family, friends, and employers were more likely to persist in their studies; (2) the category of academic variables which included academic advisement and faculty interaction was not statistically significant; and (3) consideration should be given to establishing a policy requiring students who enter the program to have a given number of credits prior to enrolling as an external degree student. Contains 25 references. (SM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A