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ERIC Number: ED554267
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 202
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3031-6080-6
An Investigation of the Six-Year Persistence/Attainment of Independent Students and Students Beginning in Community Colleges, 2003-04--2008-09: A Closer Look at Academic and Social Integration Factors
Ruot, Brenda
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, State University of New York at Buffalo
The persistence of college students, particularly through credential attainment, is of importance to many stakeholders in higher education, including policymakers, taxpayers, parents and students. This dissertation study used longitudinal data nationally representative of higher education institutions and students, the National Center for Education Statistics' (NCES) Beginning Postsecondary Students longitudinal study (BPS:04/09). The purpose of this study is to describe the six-year persistence/attainment of independent students and students beginning in community colleges. Attrition/persistence studies abound; however this dissertation study is unique in its focus on the six-year persistence/attainment (defined as success) of two nontraditional student groups: independent students and community college beginners. The 17-18 literature-based variables anticipated to influence persistence/attainment were grouped under three umbrellas: background/demographic factors, life circumstance variables, and college enrollment realities. The data were accessed via NCES' online interface, PowerStats, and were analyzed utilizing descriptive and logistic regression analyses to suggest factors related to independent and community college student persistence/attainment in college. Tinto (1975, 1987, 1993) hypothesized the greater the levels of academic and social integration of students into an institution of higher education, the greater the chances of that student being retained in that institution. Many other scholars (Bean & Metnzer, 1985; Braxton, Hirschy & McClendon, 2004; Cabrera, Nora, & Caste?, 1993; St. John, Cabrera, Nora, & Asker, 2000) have added to and adapted the concepts and emphases of academic integration and social integration and their relationship with persistence/attainment of nontraditional student groups. Results of this dissertation study suggested modest support for a positive relationship between academic integration and nontraditional student success, and no relationship between social integration of independent students or community college beginners and success. Although attributes of independent status, such as age and single parent status, and beginning in a community college emerged as detrimental to success chances of nontraditional students, results of this study also suggested several positive predictors of success. Receipt of Pell, higher first-year GPA and stopping out were positively related to the success of independent students and community college beginners. Further refining of theory and research on nontraditional student success, and specifically in the areas of academic integration, community college attendance, financial aid, and attendance patterns is suggested given the findings and implications of this study. [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:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A