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PEDAR: Executive Summary Short-Term Enrollment in Postsecondary Education: Student Background and Institutional Differences in Reasons for Early Departure, 1996-98
Introduction
What Proportion of Students Left College Without a Credential and Did Not Return in the First 3 Years?
What Factors Were Associated with Early Departure from Postsecondary Education by Institution Type?
Students' Educational Expectations
Other Characteristics
What Reasons Did These Short-Term Enrollees Give for Their Departure?
What Other Characteristics of Short-Term Enrollees Were Associated with Their Reasons for Departure?
Were Differences in Reasons for Departure by Institution Type Found After Controlling for Other Characteristics?
Other Results
Research Methodology
References
Full Report (PDF)
Executive Summary (PDF)
What Other Characteristics of Short-Term Enrollees Were Associated with Their Reasons for Departure?

Among beginning postsecondary students who left early, women were more likely than men to say that they left because of a change in family status or because of conflicts at home or personal problems. In contrast, men were more likely than women to say they left because of academic problems or because they needed to work. Higher income students who left were less likely than their lower income counterparts to say that they left because of a change in family status. In addition, students in the middle two income quartiles were more likely than those in the highest quartile to leave because they needed to work (30 versus 13 percent).

Although short-term enrollees cited academic problems relatively infrequently as a reason for their departure, the evidence above showed that first-year grades were consistently associated with early attrition in all institution types. There was some evidence that students without nontraditional characteristics were more likely than those with these characteristics to cite academic problems as a cause of departure from postsecondary education. Students who enrolled full time during their first year were more likely than students who had mixed patterns of attendance or who attended part time to report academic problems as a cause of their early departure (7 versus 0.2 and 2 percent, respectively). In addition, short-term enrollees who worked more hours while enrolled during their first year of postsecondary education were less likely than those who worked fewer hours to say they left because of academic problems.


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National Center for Education Statistics - http://nces.ed.gov
U.S. Department of Education