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ERIC Number: EJ857133
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
Transfer and the Part-Time Student: The Gulf Separating Community Colleges and Selective Universities
Handel, Stephen J.
Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, v41 n4 p48-53 Jul-Aug 2009
When representatives from community colleges and selective four-year institutions gather, there is no greater flashpoint than the topic of part-time enrollment. This issue--that students coming from an institution comprising mostly part-time students should be enabled to transfer to selective four-year institutions in which full-time enrollment is the norm--reflects a fundamental difference between the academic cultures of these two institutional types. While community colleges and selective institutions differ on a variety of other dimensions such as mission, funding, and facilities, this subject generates the most heat. The part-time/full-time schism encompasses a myriad of concerns lying just below the polite, careful conversation that occurs among community college and university professionals. Indeed, it serves as a proxy for the many reasons transfer policies have failed students. A healthy transfer system, which involves committed partnerships between community colleges and selective institutions, creates opportunities for community college students to attend the nation's best undergraduate and graduate institutions--gaining access to the enclaves of the intelligentsia and the halls of power. In turn, elite institutions build an educational pipeline that provides a steady flow of well-educated students from a variety of racial, ethnic, and income groups, a goal that is putatively central to their core mission. If community colleges are interested in sending their best students to the best universities, and if those same universities are attracted to the student diversity at community colleges, then the institutions must work in tandem. The solution is not to create identical academic cultures but to acknowledge the unique strengths of community colleges and selective institutions, while insisting nonetheless that both collaborate in the preparation of students for the baccalaureate degree. (Contains 11 resources.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California