Parents' predispositions for four-year universities as discerned by their children
University of Wisconsin--Whitewater
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Inordinate numbers of high school graduates in the U.S. are attending four-year universities, according to economists, employers and academics. Meanwhile, too few high school graduates are learning occupational skills typically acquired at two-year community and technical colleges. This is resulting in a mismatch of the job skills in the employment market, with employers looking for skilled workers and many bachelor’s degree holders finding themselves underemployed. Parental predispositions for higher education may preclude significant populations of children from exploring all higher education options, therefore, contributing to the skills imbalance. A survey of current four-year college students was conducted at a mid-sized, regional, comprehensive university in the Midwest to analyze perceptions regarding the extent to which parents’ have predispositions about four-year universities and whether high school students are dissuaded by parents from exploring or attending community and technical colleges. As hypothesized, the research showed a high number of students reported that their parents expected them to attend four-year postsecondary education institutions (PEI’s). A positive correlation between parents’ predispositions for children attending a four-year university and parents discouraging children from attending a two-year community or technical college was also found. It also revealed a correlation between parents’ level of involvement and their expectations and predispositions for their children attending a four year university.
College choice--United States
Education, Higher--Parent participation--United States