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ERIC Number: ED446633
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-May
Pages: 9
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Retention of Students from First Generation and Low Income Backgrounds.
Thayer, Paul B.
This paper, the third in a series of Research Informing Practice Short Papers commissioned by the National TRIO Clearinghouse, reviews some of the recent literature related to student retention in higher education, with particular emphasis on factors affecting students from low income and first generation backgrounds. According to the paper, this emphasis was chosen for two reasons. First, because students from first generation and low income backgrounds are among the least likely to be retained through degree completion, institutional retention efforts must take the needs of such students into account if more equitable educational attainment rates are desired. Second, strategies that work for first generation and low income students are likely to be successful for the general student population, as well. By contrast, strategies that are designed for general campus populations without taking into account the special circumstances and characteristics of first generation and low income students will not often be successful for the latter. After describing theoretical models of retention, special characteristics of these students, and retention efforts addressing them, the paper concludes by recommending promising strategies for implementation by Student Support Services programs, McNair programs, and other programs addressing the needs of these students. It suggests that structured first-year and learning community programs respond in practical ways to established retention theory and to the specific needs and characteristics of students from low income and first generation backgrounds. (Contains 38 references.) (EV)
Council for Opportunity in Education, 1025 Vermont Ave., Suite 900, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-347-2218 or 202-347-7430; e-mail:; available for download at
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Department of Education, Washington, DC.; National TRIO Clearinghouse, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A