Title

University Academic Success of Nontraditional and Traditional Community College Transfer Students

Date of Award

1998

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Studies and Research

First Advisor

John R. Rachal

Advisor Department

Educational Studies and Research

Abstract

The emphasis of this study was to examine university performance of nontraditional (25 years and older) transfer students from Mississippi community colleges. Data were collected for nontraditional (N = 266) and traditional (N = 221) students, as well as native students in order to examine relationships between selected variables and upper division grade point average (GPA) and baccalaureate degree attainment. The students included in the study were admitted to the University during the Fall semesters of 1989-1991. Variables were: race, gender, ACT composite score, lower division GPA, enrollment status, college of major, credit hours transferred, associate degree attainment, and community college attended. Alpha was set at 05. Among the university GPA findings were: (1) Variables in the prediction models accounted for only 38% and 30% of the variance in upper division GPA for nontraditional and traditional transfers, respectively. (2) Lower division GPA was the best predictor of upper division GPA for nontraditional and traditional transfer students. (3) Transfer students earn significantly higher grades in education and psychology than in science and business. (4) Other significant predictors of upper division GPA for nontraditional transfer students were associate degree status, transfer credit hours, and gender, accounting for 4% of the variance in upper division GPA. Among the degree attainment findings were: (1) Variables in the prediction models accounted for only 16% and 6% of the variance in graduation status for nontraditional and traditional transfer students, respectively. (2) Again, lower division GPA was the best predictor of degree attainment. (3) For nontraditional transfer students, college of major, transfer credit hours, and race were significant predictors of degree attainment. (4) Upper division GPA accounted for 42% and 39% of the variance in graduation status for nontraditional and traditional transfer students, respectively. When controlling for the variables ACT composite score, lower division GPA, and college of major, the academic performances of nontraditional transfer, traditional transfer, nontraditional native, and traditional native students were not significantly different.