Publication Date

2009-12-08

Availability

Open access

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)

Department

Educational and Psychological Studies (Education)

Date of Defense

2009-11-13

First Committee Member

Anne M. Hocutt - Committee Chair

Second Committee Member

Scott Ingold - Committee Member

Third Committee Member

Randall Penfield - Committee Member

Fourth Committee Member

Carol-Anne Phekoo - Committee Member

Fifth Committee Member

Paul Driscoll - Outside Committee Member

Abstract

Little is known about the college adjustment of first-generation students, particularly those from various racial/ethnic groups. This study sought to describe the college adjustment of first-generation students from three different racial/ethnic backgrounds (White/non-Hispanic, Black and Hispanic) and to determine whether generational status and race/ethnicity jointly or separately affect college adjustment as measured by responses to the Student Adaptation to College Questionnaire (SACQ). A sample of 418 students (208 first-generation, 210 non-first-generation; 140 White, 138 Black, and 140 Hispanic) was drawn from a population of 4,718 degree-seeking, self-identified undergraduates at a research university in the Southeast. A 2 X 3 factorial ANOVA was used to assess the effects of generational status and race/ethnicity on college adjustment. There was no significant interaction between the independent variables on adjustment to college, nor were there significant main effects. Despite follow-up data collection efforts, a low response rate (34%) to the online administration of the instrument and consequent low number of respondents in each cell may have obscured existing differences. Other implications are discussed, including the question of SACQ sensitivity to racial/ethnic differences and difficulties of web-based survey administration in an institutional setting.

Keywords

Minority Students; Social Integration; Academic Integration; College Experiences; College Transition; College Choice;

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