ERIC Number: EJ741985
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Influences on Student Withdrawal from Further Education: A Case Study
Bidgood, Penelope; Saebi, Nasrollah; May, Steve
Journal of Vocational Education and Training, v58 n2 p223-236 Jun 2006
Provision of Further Education (FE) colleges is becoming more important to the nation's education strategy. Much of this provision is in National Vocational Qualifications (NVQ); in 2003/04 almost half a million of these qualifications were awarded. However, in contrast to the situation in Higher Education (HE), there has been comparatively little research into the impact of ethnicity and gender on retention in FE. This study is an attempt to address these issues and, in doing so, to provide statistical evidence for one FE college to assist in their strategic planning. Here, statistical analyses of the effects on student withdrawal rates of the factors: age, gender, ethnicity, studying for a qualification with an English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) element and Widening Participation (WP) category are carried out. Our statistical analyses show that, in general, gender is a highly significant factor in withdrawal rates as are ethnic group and WP category. Studying for an ESOL-related qualification, which is used here as a proxy for language issues, was found to be a significant factor for Entry-level students only. Age was found not to be a significant factor at any level. This led us to the tentative conclusion that, while external factors such as financial hardship are likely to play a part in influencing the decision of students to withdraw, the different ways that genders and ethnic groups at particular levels of study respond to the college environment, apparently independently of external factors, may be an issue that could be addressed through a review of internal college factors including teaching and assessment.
Descriptors: Adult Education, Influences, Withdrawal (Education), Case Studies, Educational Strategies, Qualifications, Ethnicity, Strategic Planning, English (Second Language), College Students, College Environment, School Holding Power, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom