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Collegiate attrition refers to the reduction in number of students who attend their courses as time goes by. Students drop out of school for a number of reasons, some of which have no connection with academic issues. Reports from the US Census Bureau reveal that one out of every three students drops out of college, which is an increase as in the 1960s, only one out of every five students abandoned the studying. One of the main reasons for college attrition is low income, with studies showing most students from low income families either drop out of college or take longer to complete their degree. Though studies attribute a high college dropout rate to financial problems, there are other factors that force students to abandon a course of study. They drop out because their expectations of college, socially or academically, or both, do not match the reality in college, not forgetting that students suffer from the lack of motivation, poor study skills, and inadequate preparation.
Causes of College Dropout and How to Fix Them
For many students and parents, paying school fees is a real financial burden. Many students who drop out cite financial constraints as the first reason that pushed them to leave college. In most cases, parents and guardians are able to raise fees for the first year of college, but the burden becomes heavier in the coming years. Students start looking for part time jobs to raise part of their tuition and earn some cash for their daily needs and survival in college (Lamb and Teese 283). The effects on studies are poor grades, which eventually leads to the student’s dropout.
This can be fixed by parents and councilors’ teaching students how to manage their finances to ensure that the finances at their disposal are enough to take them through the semester. This will minimize the constant frustrations resulting from the lack of money.
Too much fun
Many first college students are far from home for the first time, apart from those who attended boarding, but still they were under the guard of the school administration. When students join college, they have the freedom to choose what they want to do for the first time in their lives. In most situations, the students are not able to strike a balance between studying and socializing.
Students can fix this by taking part in campus activities to keep them busy from over indulging in parties. When students form a study group for discussions, they do not have the time to waste in unproductive activities, and the result is impressive grades.
Not joining in
Not every person is social, and some students find it extremely hard to socialize and interact with other students. Instead of interacting with classmates and other students, the antisocial ones retire to their hostels early. These students attend lecturers and go to the library alone (Lamb and Teese 283). When the loneliness becomes unbearable, such students drop out in an attempt to get a sense of belonging from another place.
Students can fix this by getting involved in study groups, which make it possible for students to interact with others, saving them from the frustrations of loneliness and isolation. The sense of belonging will encourage students to stay in schools and complete their studies.
Being unprepared academically and poor grades
Most students pass remarkably well in their high school exams, allowing them to secure seats in colleges. However, college studies can be more demanding than high school life, requiring more energy and time.
Choosing the wrong major or being unable to choose one
Students feel pressured to choose their majors at the time they are applying to college, but the truth is that a standard college student will change his/her major from five to six times in the course of undertaking his/her degree. When the pressure becomes too high, they drop out due to frustrations.
To fix this issue, students should be able apply to college without having chosen their major yet, and then they can choose the major they want to pursue when they decide what they want to study.
First generation students
Recent studies indicate that first-born students in families have higher chances to drop out of college before completing their studies. Such students do not have elder siblings to look up to, and it is even worse when they are minorities. The students do not know what to expect from colleges, and when the expectations become too high, they end up in frustrations (Lamb and Teese 283).
To fix this problem, students should first investigate which colleges offer first generation programs and which colleges admit minority students. These programs would assist them understand what colleges expect from them.