Do Students Drop Out From College Because Of Finance Or Weak Academic Preparation

December 10th, 2009

College Dropouts
Majority of College Dropouts Cite Financial Struggles as Main Cause
The number one reason many young adults drop out of college is an inability to juggle school, work and paying for basic expenses, according to a Public Agenda report. Of students surveyed, 58% said they did not receive financial help from their families to pay tuition or fees, and 69% had no financial aid. The report suggests ways to make it easier for working students to complete school, including allowing part-time students to receive financial aid, scheduling more classes at night and on weekends, reducing tuition and providing child care. (Washington Post, 12/09/09)

  As you read this watch out for whether these drop out students who say they have financial problems also have academic problems, that increases their costs because of the need to take remedial noncredit courses. It is not clear from the news reports if financial and academic problems are inter correlated. Moreover, the responses in the report indicate the students who drop out had serious academic problems as well as financial problems, so the media focus on just finance seems misplaced. Let me know what you think.