ERIC Number: ED496188
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Mar
Returning to Learning: Adults' Success in College is Key to America's Future. New Agenda Series
Pusser, Brian; Breneman, David W.; Gansneder, Bruce M.; Kohl, Kay J.; Levin, John S.; Milam, John H.; Turner, Sarah E.
Lumina Foundation for Education
This report presents a summary of findings from the Emerging Pathways project, which seeks to identify the diverse needs and characteristics of adult learners, understand patterns of enrollment in credit and non-credit-bearing courses and offer advice to postsecondary institutions and policymakers committed to adult learners' success. Among its findings are the following: (1) We must seek to develop the untapped potential of the 54 million working adults who have not completed a four-year degree; (2) Adult learners must be recognized as a diverse and complex set of individuals with widely divergent aspirations, levels of preparation and degrees of risk; (3) Adult learners' varying life circumstances require postsecondary policymakers, institutional leaders and other stakeholders to provide convenient and affordable access, create flexible subsidies and develop innovative planning tools to increase student success; (4) Adult students increasingly choose entrepreneurial postsecondary institutions and programs, including continuing education, contract education, satellite and online programs and for-profit institutions; (5) Credit for course completion remains a key component of baccalaureate attainment and other forms of credentialing; (6) Pre-baccalaureate programs should increasingly be linked to credit attainment; and (7) State attention and resources are devoted increasingly to P-16 educational reform programs, yet these programs do not adequately serve adult learners, an oversight that must be corrected. The findings suggest that new avenues to postsecondary attainment are emerging for adults, bringing with them unprecedented opportunities and challenges.
Descriptors: Contract Training, Continuing Education, Adult Students, Adult Learning, Community Colleges, Paying for College, Academic Aspiration, Postsecondary Education, Global Approach, Human Capital, Time to Degree, Academic Persistence, Nontraditional Students, Nontraditional Education, Student Characteristics, High Risk Students, School Holding Power, Student Attrition, Education Work Relationship, Educational Policy, Enrollment Trends, Surveys, Role of Education
Lumina Foundation for Education. P.O. Box 1806, Indianapolis, IN 46206-1806. Tel: 800-834-5756; Fax: 317-951-5063; Web site: http://www.luminafoundation.org/publications/index.html
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Sponsor: Lumina Foundation for Education, Indianapolis, IN.
Authoring Institution: Lumina Foundation for Education, Indianapolis, IN.