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ERIC Number: EJ1094140
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jul
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1443-2110
Mapping a Retention Index across the Student Continuum
van der Merwe, C. A.
Journal of Institutional Research, v16 n1 p52-68 Jul 2011
Student retention is the field of institutional research that has (deservedly) had the most attention. Besides the models proposed by Tinto (1975, 1993), there have been many theoretical and applied papers on many aspects of student retention. These include demographic characteristics, scholastic scores, financial and residential considerations, orientation activities, quality of teaching and supervision, campus life, societal and social integration, support services like libraries, counselling, office bound vs. online student administration and information services, (first year) attrition, experiential training, language proficiency, discrimination, commitment of students, competitiveness with peers, communication and other "life skills", and so forth. For this précis, some of the more recent research that will be examined includes Madgett and Bélanger (2008), Swail (2006), Carter (2006) and Burns (2010). The purpose of this article is to describe a mapping of institutional-applicable indices developed over the years, based on single or highly complex analyses and statistical modelling of the aspects above, or combinations of these, or other aspects. The emphasis will be from the student's perspective, over the time period from admission to graduation, and over the nature of phases and processes within the university. Wide anecdotal evidence suggests that managing the knowledge gleaned from data and information, from systemic and/or survey sources, is a strategic approach that may be remiss in many universities, as are the ad hoc retention improvement interventions, rather than an integrated approach. [This paper was first presented at the Annual Conference of the Australasian Association for Institutional Research, "Has institutional research come of age in Australia?," in Geelong, 10-12 November 2010.]
Australasian Association for Institutional Research. 546 Gallymont Road, Mandurama, NSW 2792, Australia. +61-2-6367-5347; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A