Traditionally student transfer is considered linear, from a community college to a university. But frequently students "swirl" by attending multiple colleges before completing a baccalaureate degree. The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the perspectives and experiences of students who swirl between community colleges before they successfully transfer to a 4-year institution. Interviews were conducted with ten participants attending a large university in Southern California and transcripts were coded using a constant comparative method. Participants were diverse in their perspectives and experiences, attributing their decisions to swirl to various factors, both personal and circumstantial. Most participants described low student involvement at community colleges, though involvement often changed at different schools. Social, familial, and institutional support received was generally positive but subtle. Instead, transfer success was credited to persistence and drive. The term "swirler" conveyed a negative connotation and participants expressed mixed feelings about the behavior and its implications.
|Advisor:||Locks, Angela M.|
|Commitee:||Murray, John, Ortiz, Anna|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|Department:||Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 51/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Community college education, Higher education|
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