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ERIC Number: EJ1101835
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1939-4225
Why Go Back to School? Investigating the Motivations of Student Parents to Pursue Post-Secondary Education
van Rhijn, Tricia; Lero, Donna S.; Burke, Taniesha
New Horizons in Adult Education & Human Resource Development, v28 n2 p14-26 Spr 2016
This study explored the factors that motivate student parents to pursue post-secondary education. Student parents at four Canadian universities (n = 398) completed open-ended questions on their reasons for attending school in an online survey. Using Possible Selves Theory as a lens, we conducted a directed content analysis and found that student parents' motivation to attend school has a strong future orientation. Primary motivators for engaging in post-secondary study included: to attain a valued job/career, higher education, and inspiration from family. Secondary motivators included: personal development, improvement in lifestyle and income, inspiration from relationships outside the family, the desire to be socially responsible, to overcome physical/mental challenges, and to develop a new hobby. The results indicate that student parents' reasons for pursuing post-secondary education are varied and complex; it is therefore important that government and university policymakers are aware of the uniqueness of this population when making decisions on policies and supports.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A