Books and Book Chapters by University of Dayton Faculty



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Increasingly, education policymakers are turning attention to the access and persistence of the new college majority,-a group that may be described as mobile working students (Ewell, Schild, & Paulson, 2003). Traditionally, much research on college students has focused on students who graduate from high school and move on to attend a four-year college on a full-time basis, graduating in four to six years. However, as Adelman (2006) and others show, even among traditional-age college students this pattern of linear enrollment is less and less common. Thus, as Kasworm (chapter 2) also argues, metaphors such as the education pipeline no longer fit. Instead, students are more accurately represented as moving along pathways or even swirling toward postsecondary success.

The experience of the mobile working student as conceived in this chapter encompasses multiple aspects of mobility and the varied, nonlinear, and evolving patterns of college going increasingly characteristic of students nationwide. One aspect of mobility in this complex and emerging picture centers on students' experiences at commuter institutions, moving onto and off of campuses. In addition, students enroll in multiple institutions, moving between them. Finally, because they move into and out of institutions as well, the concomitant issues of attrition, stop-out, and degree attainment are also important to this project.



Publication Date


Publication Source

Understanding the Working College Student: New Research and Its Implications for Policy and Practice




Sterling, VA


Educational Administration and Supervision | Higher Education Administration


Chapter 4, is provided for download with the permission of the publisher. Permission documentation is on file. To purchase the full volume or an electronic version of the book, use the link provided.

Citation information for the book in which the chapter appears:

Perna, Laura W., Ed. Understanding the Working College Student: New Research and Its Implications for Policy and Practice. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, 2010.

Mobile Working Students: A Delicate Balance of College, Family, and Work