Assessing the needs of returning adult students from a developmental perspective
Contributor(s)Newlon, Betty J.
KeywordsMotivation in adult education.
Adult education -- Arizona -- Evaluation.
College students -- Arizona -- Attitudes.
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AbstractThe purpose of this study was to identify the needs of returning adult students at community colleges in Arizona through the application of adult developmental theory. To differentiate adult students' needs from those of traditional-age students, samples of prospective freshmen and returning adults were surveyed. Participants in the study were 108 graduated high school seniors, and 104 community college students who were 25 years or older and had a break of three years or more in their education. Participants completed a questionnaire requesting demographic information, reasons for attending college, fears, expectations and needed services. Results showed that traditional-age college students enter higher education to expand their social world, to prepare for a career, and fearing the stresses of college life. Adult students' reasons for entering higher education relate to life transitions and personal growth. They are highly motivated yet hampered by multiple role responsibilities and fear of failing.