Coralville, Iowa (PRWEB) May 09, 2013
In response to the growing call to increase college completion rates, many campus officials have turned their attention to the "sophomore slump," a term that broadly defines the somewhat-common-and-lackluster performance of a substantial portion of second-year college students.
A new study sheds more light on this issue by examining dozens of non-cognitive, motivational attitudes that help explain why some sophomores slump and others don't.
Among the highlights:
•Only three-quarters of second-year students at four-year private and public institutions were able to affirm that they "felt energized" by most of the ideas they were learning in their classes.
•Only two-thirds of second-year students at two-year public institutions were able to affirm the statement, "I have many friends and feel at home here."
•Only a slight majority of respondents across institution types, led by male students, indicated they had the financial resources they needed to finish college.
•Many second-year students across institution types were interested in gaining work experiences related to their major. However, students across institution types tended to be dissatisfied with the availability of work experiences associated with their career interests.
•Nine percent of respondents from four-year private institutions, 14 percent of respondents from four-year public institutions, and 56 percent of respondents from two-year public institutions reported that they were undecided about continuing their enrollment or planned to transfer to another institution.
"Many second-year students are searching for purpose and meaning in the selection of a major, new friendships, a career of interest, and financial solutions for their educational and living expenses and debt," notes Jo Hillman, senior director of retention solutions for Noel-Levitz. "While the majority of students have identified the need to study harder, to seek tutoring, and to complete their educational programs, the data also show some areas of frustration, including a reluctance to receive assistance from their institutions that is more pronounced among sophomore males."
The Noel-Levitz study, titled The Attitudes of Second-Year College Students, includes suggestions for translating the findings into action. The study is based on more than 3,870 student survey responses from students at 28 colleges and universities. For a copy of the 20-page report, visit http://www.noellevitz.com/SecondYearReport.
Noel-Levitz is a recognized leader in higher education consulting and research. For 40 years, they have partnered with more than 2,800 campuses to optimize enrollment management and student success through experienced consultation, advanced analytic tools, and campus assessments.