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ERIC Number: ED550609
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 130
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-9206-5
A Comparative Analysis of Factors Influencing Students' College Choice between Attending Public Colleges, Private Colleges, or Religiously Affiliated Colleges
Easter, Anthony J.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Union University
College choice is a highly relevant area for the field of higher education. Much research has been done to determine if a student will attend college or not, but there is limited research related to what type of college a student will choose. The purpose of this study was to compare and analyze the factors that influence college students' choice of whether to attend a public college, private college, or religiously affiliated college. Another objective was to see if predictions could be made about which type of college a prospective student would choose based on their answers to survey questions. The study looked at data from the 2008 Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) Freshman Survey. It considered the responses survey takers gave for questions related to why they chose to attend the particular college where they decided to enroll. The sample size consisted of 74,372. This was a nationwide study that included over 240,000 first-time, full-time college students. The analysis of the secondary data obtained from the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) for this study showed that there were significant differences between the factors that influenced college students to choose to attend a public college, private college, or religiously affiliated college. The only exceptions to this finding were between public and religiously affiliated colleges on the components of the college's reputation of success and first choice. It also suggested that there are differences between the types of colleges themselves when compared by the influencing factors. Finally, discriminant scores were developed to try and predict group membership based on raw data from survey respondents. The classification results from the discriminant analysis were only moderate, so a warning to use caution when predicting was issued. The figures for this study are dated and follow-up studies are recommended. More research pertinent to college choice and how it relates to type of college should be completed due to the scarcity of the research available that directly involves this subject and the residual effects college choice can have on institutions of higher learning, all of which are not limited to economic and enrollment issues. College choice is a multivariate issue that has many facets of research associated with it. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A