Skip Navigation
Title: Waiting to Attend College: Undergraduates Who Delay Their Postsecondary Enrollment
Description: This report describes the characteristics and outcomes of students who delay enrollment in postsecondary education. It covers the ways in which the demographic, enrollment, and attendance patterns of students who delay postsecondary enrollment differ from their peers who enroll immediately after high school graduation. In addition, the report discusses how students who delay a shorter amount of time differ from those who delay longer. It is based on data from the 2000 National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS:2000), the 2000 follow-up of the National Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NELS:88/2000), and the 2001 follow-up of the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS:96/01). Delayed entrants began their postsecondary education at a significant disadvantage compared to those who enrolled immediately after high school with regard to family income, parental education, academic preparation, time spent working while enrolled, and course of study. While only a quarter of those who delayed entry first enrolled in bachelorís degree programs, over half of those who enrolled immediately did so. Further, 40 percent of delayed entrants earned some kind of postsecondary credential compared with 58 percent of immediate entrants.
Online Availability:
Cover Date: May 2005
Web Release: June 16, 2005
Print Release:
Publication #: NCES 2005152
General Ordering Information
Center/Program: NCES
Type of Product: Statistical Analysis Report
Survey/Program Areas: Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study (BPS)
National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988 (NELS:88)
National Postsecondary Student Aid Study (NPSAS)
Postsecondary Education Descriptive Analysis Reports (PEDAR)
Questions: For questions about the content of this Statistical Analysis Report, please contact the Webmaster.