The impact of precollege characteristics and community college factors on the academic and social adjustment of adult vertical transfer students
Schwehm, Jeremy Stephen
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The dual purpose of this quantitative study was to provide a comprehensive descriptive profile of an adult vertical transfer student population and to identify precollege characteristics and community college experiences that influence the academic and social adjustment process of these students at the university. Data were collected on adult vertical transfer student demographic information, community college experiences, and experiences with academic and social adjustment at the university. The 409 participants in this study were aged 25 years or over at the time of community college attendance and had completed the equivalent of 12 semester hours or above of community college coursework with the intent of transferring credits to a university. Four research questions were examined in this study using descriptive statistics, ANOVA, simple linear regression, and multiple linear regression. The results of the descriptive analysis showed that the demographic profile that fit the largest group of adult vertical transfer students in this study was a 33 year old white, female, continuing-generation college student with a yearly income below $29,000. Survey results showed community college GPA to be the most influential variable in predicting university GPA, and level of perceived classroom involvement at the community college was the most influential variable in predicting academic self-efficacy. Level of classroom involvement at the community college was also the most influential variable in predicting social adjustment at the university. The four major conclusions of this study were: (a) environmental variables had little impact on the ability of adult transfer students to participate in academic or social activities; (b) classroom involvement influenced both academic and social adjustment at the university; (c) community college GPA was the most influential variable in predicting university success; and (d) adult students did not fit the common descriptive profile of vertical transfer students.
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