NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS: HOW DO YOU SUCCEED

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS: HOW DO YOU SUCCEED

VIRGINIA JONES

This study is concerning Nontraditional students and how they succeed in their academic pursuit.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

The academic world has applied a term for

an up and rising group called the

“Nontraditional Student”.

WHO ARE THEY?

The term was originally used to describe the

25 and older, students returning to school, and part-time and full-time status

(Ely,1997; Jinkens, 2009;O’Keefe,1993).

The term Nontraditional student has been around since the late Nineties but gain recognition in the early 2000.

So who is classified as a nontraditional student?

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They were just a statistic used in comparison tables.

Now the nontraditional students are recognized as a rising force to

be reckoned with.

Nontraditional student represented an

enrollment increase of 13%

during 1997-2007 (NCES,2009).

It is reported by 2017 the enrollment will rise another 20% (NCES,2009).

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

During 1997-2007 the country was having an economic hiccup and companies began to streamline by having layoffs.

People began to wonder what were they going to do to find another job and in what venue. So according to the U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics has reported the increase of nontraditional students enrollment over the past 10 year period between 1997-2007. You can see influx of students even around campus taking classes at night has definitely increase.

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WHO ARE THEY?

Lane(2004) added more

descriptive attributes

to the term

“Nontraditional Student”

FINANCIAL INDEPENDENCE

FULL TIME EMPLOYED

DEPENDENTS

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

We can say that a “Nontraditional Student” is one that is over 25 years old, attends part time or full time, can have a spouse and/or dependents and be financially independent. Also included in the definition is transfer students.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

WHY THE INCREASE?

A few factors that caused this growth are:

CONTINUING EDUCATION TO ADVANCE CAREERS

EARLY RETIREMENT-MORE FREE TIME

JOB LOSS- OTHER TRADES

(Kenner & Weissmann,2011)

Factors that have influenced this increase in enrollment can be attributed to the following reasons: (1) older students see the value in continuing their education in order to advance in their career; (2) Retirement packages or early retirement options (that include veterans of the armed forces) have allotted more time to find enjoyment in leisure learning or enhancing their intellectual capacity; or (3) job losses have urged older students to seek other trades and disciplines in order to find work (Kenner & Weinerman, 2011).

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This study will clarify the misconceptions about nontraditional students learning environment.

It will list barriers encountered by:

Minorities in several disciplines

Online students

Soldiers returning home

Transfer students-community college

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

This study will look at 4 areas of case studies that will cover Minorities, NT students online, soldiers and transfer student. All of these students are under the nontraditional term of being over 25 years and returning back to school to pursue a bachelor degree.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

Why does the nontraditional student want to attend to college?

Why does the nontraditional student keep going?

DECISION

intrinsic

MAKING

extrinsic

DECI AND RYAN, (1985)

MOTIVATION

SUPPORT

Bye, Pushkar, & Conway ,(2007)

Bowie & Hancock, (2000)

To know

Accomplish

Sensory pleasure

Regulation

Introjection

Identification

Deci and Ryan(1985) stated that 2 factors influence nontraditional students in their decision making. They are intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Intrinsic motivation pertains doing something for the mere satisfaction. While extrinsic motivation is doing something as a means to an end. There three types of intrinsic motivation

1. Intrinsic motivation to know- fact of performing an activity for the pleasure and the satisfaction

that one experiences while learning, exploring, or trying to understand something new.

2. Intrinsic motivation to accomplish things- the fact of engaging in an activity for the pleasure

and experience when one attempts to accomplish or create something.

3. Intrinsic motivation to experience stimulation- engaging in activity in order to experience

stimulating sensations (sensory pleasure, fun and excitement) (Ryan & Deci, 2000).

The three types of extrinsic motivation proposed consist of:

1. External regulation-behavior regulated through external means such as rewards or constraints

2. Introjection-individuals begin to internalize the reasons for his or her actions

3. Identification-action becomes so internalized that it is judged as important to the person (Ryan & Deci, 2000).

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

Soldiers as nontraditional students- Covert(2002)

What does the soldier need to transition to a career or school from the military?

50 participants and 5 methods of data collection used

Demographic, Situational and Educational surveys

Records and Documents-Army policies, operating procedures and directives(Dept. of Defense, Army Regulations 621- (USDA,1993)

Focus groups-recorded and transcribed

The first case study is looking at soldiers at nontraditional students. Covert(2002) study was examining how soldiers transition from the service to a new career. He chose soldiers who had begun taking class or wanted to pursue a degree after exiting the military. He wanted to determine the motivation for the pursuit and the barriers they face now in getting a degree. The participation in the study consist of 50 participants out 92 interviewed. The data used came from 5 sources and a matrix was used to record the data in.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

Observation-field notes

Interviews-recorded and transcribed

Interviews and Focus groups done at the Fort educational center

Interview questionnaire below

So the five collections consist of Interviews, Surveys or Questionnaires, Observation field notes, Focus groups interviews and Army policies and procedures. They used the sources to try and assure the data was trustworthy.

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Interview – Participant Questionnaire- EXAMPLE USED

Senior Noncommissioned Officers’ Participation in Postsecondary Educational Opportunities

I. Individual History

1. How long have you been stationed here?

2. What type of college degree/s do you have and are

currently pursuing?

3. Demographic Data (MOS, race, age, gender, married

/single/kids, and time-in-service).

II. Parents History (Aspects of first-generation students)

1. What are your parents’ highest levels of education?

2. Parents’ Demographic data (occupation, race, age, gender, married/single).

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

I have included an example of an interview questionnaire used to gather data.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

Interview – Participant Questionnaire- EXAMPLE USED PART 2

III. Present (Motivation/Barriers/Life Transitions)

How would you describe your college-going experience throughout

your career? (From Army post to post)

2. Describe your experience at the education center here at Fort [Military]

when you in processed.

3. What do you plan to do (career wise) five years from now?

4. Why are you pursuing a bachelor degree?

IV. Policy

If you were invited to speak to the post’s commanding general as a

representative o f senior noncommissioned officers to speak to the Army

leadership about going to college, what would you tell the committee

that the Army could do to enhance its education services and

opportunities for participation?

This is the second part to the questionnaire.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

NONTRADITIONAL WOMEN OVER 35 YEARS ASHFORD LIGON(2011)

256 PARTICIPANTS OF WOMEN OVER 35 RETURNING TO COMMUNITY COLLEGE

THIS STUDY ADDRESS WHY WOMEN OVER 35 ENROLL AND WHAT SERVICES IS NEEDED

3 METHODS OF DATA COLLECTION WAS USED

SURVEYS

ONE ON ONE INTERVIEWS

FOCUS GROUP

5 CYCLE PERIOD WAS USED TO GATHER DATA

CYCLE ONE – SPRING 2009

CYCLE TWO- SUMMER 2009

CYCLE THREE- FALL 2009

CYCLE FOUR -SPRING2010

CYCLE FIVE –SUMMER 2010

The second case study is nontraditional women over 35 by Ashford Ligon (2011). This study reviews the motivation for women over 35 who return to school and what areas impede their growth. This study is taken from a community college venue. For data to be trustworthy the researcher used 3 ways to gather the information. They chose to gather data a little over a year to get a good sample.

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NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

RESULTS-SOLDIER’S STUDY

RANK HIGH TO LOW- MOTIVATIONS

OBTAINED A CREDENTIAL

ENHANCED SELF-EFFICACY

PREPARE FOR A NEW CAREER

BARRIERS

TYPE OF UNIT-TACTICAL OR FIELD

UNSUPPORTED SUPERVISORS

FREQUENT RELOCATIONS

WOMEN OVER 35 STUDY

Three areas emerged in the surveys

Academic Advisement needs

Support system

Positive factors for continual education

Three main factors to return to school

Negative factors for continual education

Three main barriers that hinder going to school

Listed side by side are the results of the two studies concerning soldiers and women over 35. Both studies revealed three main factors for the motivation to return and continue and the three barriers they both had to address.

Academic Advisement needs:

To stay on track what courses should be taken

Financial Aid help-scholarships, grants, loans

Transfer to other colleges help- 4yr college

Positive factors for continual education

Build self confidence

Career Advance

Accomplishment in an endeavor

Negative factors for continual education

Lack of time

Juggling school, work and home

Other responsibilities

For the soldiers the need to know how there MOS compares to the civilian life is crucial. They must know how the transition will be equivalent to their experience.

An initiative was introduced at the time of the study which was a new Web-based service: Credentialing Opportunities

On-Line (COOL). The Web site provides four major services: (a) It provides

background information about civilian licensure and certification, (2) it identifies

licenses and certificates relevant to Army MOSs, (c) it provides information about

how Army training and experience translates into civilian credentialing requirements,

and (d) it provides information about various types of resources available to

assist with the civilian credentialing process (USDA, 2002d).

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SOLDIER’S STUDY DISCUSSION

Continual transitions change views over the years

Length of time –different perspective

Retirement- What opportunities?

Recommendation

Educational centers-Provide more

counseling and timely information concerning transition

NONTRADITIONAL STUDENTS

WOMEN OVER 35 DISCUSSION

Service needs

Detail advisement

Detail orientation

Recommendation

Back to Basics orientation- by information and category

Adult learning space

Child care provision

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Questions/Discussions

Question One

Discussion

An opportunity for questions and discussions.

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