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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Self-determination, culture, and school administration: A phenomenological study on student success
by Gregg, Cecilia Marie, Ed.D., University of Phoenix, 2009, 186; 3393496
Abstract (Summary)

While the benefits of obtaining an Associate’s degree are evident, students often drop out before obtaining degrees. Because individuals with more education are more likely to be employed than those with less education, student success is a concern for community college administrators, policy makers, community leaders, and other stakeholders. Arizona has one of the lowest ranking school systems in the country due to the state’s low degree completion rates. Specifically, the retention rates and graduation rates for Cochise College are significantly lower than public, 2-year, degree-granting community colleges of similar size, across the country. This qualitative phenomenological study examined relationships between student success and self-determination. The study also explored the role of culture and school administration in student success. Expanding upon prior research on student success in 4-year, degree-granting institutions, the study contributed to the theoretical constructs of self-determination theory, interactionalist theory, and theory of student involvement. The study analysis supported prior findings suggesting that self-determination is the most significant factor in student success. The role of culture was also highlighted as a motivation source for students. While administration was seen as a support to student success, administration did not have a direct impact on student motivation towards success. The study findings provide a more clear understanding of factors related to student success and can be used by leaders in the evaluation and creation of courses, programs, and policy that support student success more heartily.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hammond, Leah
School: University of Phoenix
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 71/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Community college education, Higher Education Administration, Higher education
Keywords: Administration, Community college, Culture, Higher education, School administration, Self-determination
Publication Number: 3393496
ISBN: 978-1-109-60767-3
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