Poster Number 185
Monday, 6 October 2008
George R. Brown Convention Center, Exhibit Hall E
Transfer students comprise approximately 40% of the student population in the
College of Agriculture at Kansas State University. Retention of transfer students is vital to the College and University. To increase retention efforts by the College, an orientation course entitled College to Career was designed specifically for transfer students. The study recognizes the importance of transfer students and their need to immediately be successful at a large four-year institution. Student success in the course, defined as a grade of A, was used to assess immediate progress towards degree completion. Averaged over four semesters, 30% of students earning a grade of B or less in the course were dismissed from K-State their first semester. The percentage of students dismissed increased to 34% the second semester, 48% the third semester, with 71% of students earning a grade of B or less being dismissed from the University by their fourth semester. This is in stark contrast to dismissal rates of students who earned an A in the course. Less than 1% of those students were dismissed their first semester. After four semesters at K-State, only 6% of students earning an A were dismissed from the university. To complement the quantitative data, focus groups were conducted to gather qualitative data on the usefulness of the course. Results indicated student participants greatly supported the orientation course and the rationale for its creation and delivery. Data supports the need to continue the course to aid in retention efforts of transfer students.