GRADUATION RATES AND TRANSFER STUDENTS
Students obsess about choosing a college and worry about what will happen if they enroll and dislike their choice. According to a new study by The National Student Clearinghouse Resource Center they will be in good company: one third of all full-time students in 2006 transferred at least once in five years.
These findings are also important for students and parents using retention data to judge prospective colleges. Clifford Adelman, a senior associate with the Institute for Higher Education Policy whose research agenda includes national transfer patterns, calls the transfer phenomenon "geomobility" and says it calls attention to inefficiencies in how the government tracks graduation numbers.
The study's numbers seem to support Adelman's geomobility theory: one-quarter of transfers crossed state lines. The rates colleges report to the federal government now count only traditional, full-time students who remain at one institution. Adelman said that method of accounting can penalize colleges whose students are more likely to transfer even if those institutions provide a quality education and keep their students on track for a degree.
If you are concerned about a college's retention numbers, ask them to provide more details about their particular case. It may well be that in actuality their persistence and graduation rates are far better than the numbers indicate.
ADVICE FOR HOVERING HELICOPTER PARENTS FROM A COLLEGE FACULTY PARENT
It is difficult for some parents to find the right balance of helping their child during the college search without taking over the process--and in letting them find independence once enrolled. Kathleen Volk Miller, as Associate Professor of Teaching at Drexel University, has some advice from her dual role as mother of a college student and as a faculty member.
In her article "Parenting Secrets of a College Professor" she cites the damage she sees as a result of over anxious, intimately involved parents. "College is a perfect middle ground for this age group: Students are forced to make their own choices and take responsibility for them, but help and guidance are there if they need it. What I see, though, is that the self-reliance they should be developing is thwarted by parental involvement," she writes.
During the search process it may help to find an agreed upon time each week, for example Sunday nights at 8 p.m., and put it on the calendar, just like other important practices and events in your household. This can be the time to discuss the college process, voice concerns and to sort through the growing pile of college material on the kitchen counter! This approach may help avoid what some students describe as their parents' "non-stop nagging" about college admissions and bring some much needed stress relief for the family.
For other resources and frequently asked parent questions during the college search, visit ctcl.org resource page.
BIG SPEAKERS VISIT CTCL COLLEGES
There is always something exciting happening on CTCL campuses, a fact that often catches prospective students by surprise, thinking that only name-brand, large universities offer interesting activities and attract great speakers.
Here’s a small sampling of notables making CTCL college stops in recent or coming months:
To find out more notable facts about the CTCL colleges visit the CTCL Profile Pages.
CTCL 2012 PROGRAMS ANNOUNCED
The dates and locations for the 2012 CTCL national program series "How to Choose a College That's Right For You" have been chosen and are on the Events link at ctcl.org.
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