The relationship of selected entry-level variables to persistence at a selected Southern university

Alice Buckley Price


Attrition for students during the first year of college is a source of concern for many institutions of higher education. Tinto (1987) stated that in order for a student to persist, a student must successfully make the adjustment to college and become integrated within either the social or the academic environments within the institution. The focus of this study was to examine whether there was a relationship between persistence and selected student characteristics. This study used archival data which were taken directly from copies of each student's records at the selected university. The variables selected for use in this study were ACT scores, gender, state of residence, and whether or not the student had chosen a major upon entering the institution. Results of the analyses indicated that there were significant findings concerning the academic variable ACT composite score. It accounted for 3% of the variance. There were no significant findings for the personal circumstances variables state of residence and whether the student had selected a major; and gender accounted for less than 1% of the variance.