ERIC Number: ED481031
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2003-Apr-21
The Educational Outcomes of Occupational Sub-Baccalaureate Students: Evidence from the 1990s.
Alfonso, Mariana; Bailey, Thomas R.; Scott, Marc
This study asks if occupational education bestows advantages or disadvantages on the students who pursue it, and how the educational experiences of occupational students compare to the experiences of students in academic programs. The authors used the Beginning Postsecondary Student Longitudinal Study of 1989-94 and 1995-98 to analyze educational outcomes of sub-baccalaureate occupational students. The findings suggest that occupational students pursuing an associate degree complete their degree goals less often than their academic counterparts. The gap remains after controlling for factors such as students characteristics and expectations. The authors conclude that the community college has yet to figure out and implement the optimal approach to providing direct occupational preparation within an institutional structure that rests on an academically oriented foundation. Findings indicate that the 3-year persistence rate for all students in the 1995-98 study was 55.9%, compared to 52.0% for occupational students, and 58.2% for academic students. Persistence includes academic students who are still enrolled, those who earned an AA or AS degree, and those who transfer to a four-year institution. Students who are still enrolled after 5 years are in an ambiguous category, having neither achieved their goals nor abandoned them. The authors conclude that failure to complete a degree or certificate program within 5 years is an indication of a problem. Attached are the PowerPoint print-outs for the presentation. (Contains 32 references and 6 tables.) (NB)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Education, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Columbia Univ., New York, NY. Community Coll. Research Center.; New York Univ., NY. School of Education.
Note: Paper prepared the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, April 21-25, 2003).