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Are the Factors Affecting Dropout Behavior Related to Initial Enrollment Intensity for College Undergraduates?

  • Stratton, Leslie S.

    ()

    (Virginia Commonwealth University)

  • O'Toole, Dennis M.

    ()

    (Virginia Commonwealth University)

  • Wetzel, James N.

    ()

    (Virginia Commonwealth University)

We use data from the 1990/94 Beginning Post-Secondary Survey to determine whether the factors associated with long-term attrition from higher education differ for students who initially enrolled part-time as compared to for students who initially enrolled full-time. Using a two-stage sequential decision model to analyze the initial enrollment intensity decision jointly with attrition, we find no evidence of correlation in the unobservables that necessitates joint estimation, but substantial evidence that the factors associated with attrition differ by initial enrollment status. The timing of initial enrollment, academic performance, parental education, household characteristics, and economic factors had a substantially greater impact on those initially enrolled full-time, while racial and ethnic characteristics had a greater impact on those initially enrolled part-time. The results of our study suggest that separate specifications are necessary to identify at-risk full-time as compared with at-risk part-time students.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp1951.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1951.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Research in Higher Education, 2007, 48 (4), 453-486.
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1951
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  1. DesJardins, S. L. & Ahlburg, D. A. & McCall, B. P., 1999. "An event history model of student departure," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 375-390, June.
  2. Stratton, Leslie S. & O'Toole, Dennis M. & Wetzel, James N., 2005. "A Multinomial Logit Model of College Stopout and Dropout Behavior," IZA Discussion Papers 1634, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Stratton, Leslie S. & O'Toole, Dennis M. & Wetzel, James N., 2004. "Factors affecting initial enrollment intensity: part-time versus full-time enrollment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 167-175, April.
  4. Light, Audrey, 1995. "Hazard model estimates of the decision to reenroll in school," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 381-406, December.
  5. Altonji, Joseph G, 1993. "The Demand for and Return to Education When Education Outcomes Are Uncertain," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 48-83, January.
  6. Montmarquette, Claude & Mahseredjian, Sophie & Houle, Rachel, 2001. "The determinants of university dropouts: a bivariate probability model with sample selection," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 475-484, October.
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