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Coordinated enrollment

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Title:
Coordinated enrollment exploring alternative transfer and articulation options for community college students
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Exploring alternative transfer and articulation options for community college students
Creator:
Seehusen, Vicky Anne
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English
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xii, 163 leaves : ; 28 cm

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Subjects / Keywords:
Articulation (Education) -- Colorado ( lcsh )
Community colleges -- Colorado ( lcsh )
Transfer students -- Colorado ( lcsh )
Students, Transfer of -- Colorado ( lcsh )
Articulation (Education) ( fast )
Community colleges ( fast )
Students, Transfer of ( fast )
Transfer students ( fast )
Colorado ( fast )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 159-163).
General Note:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree, Doctor of Philosophy, Educational Leadership and Innovation.
General Note:
School of Education and Human Development
Statement of Responsibility:
by Vicky Anne Seehusen.

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University of Colorado Denver
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Auraria Library
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
36474158 ( OCLC )
ocm36474158
Classification:
LD1190.E3 1996d S44 ( lcc )

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Full Text
Coordinated Enrollment:
Exploring Alternative Transfer and Articulation
Options
for Community College Students
by
Vicky Anne Seehusen
B.S., National College, 1981
H.B.A., Regis University, 1987
A thesis submitted to the
Faculty of the Graduate School of the
University of Colorado at Denver
in partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the degree of
Doctor of Philosophy
Educational Leadership and Innovation


1996 by Vicky Anne Seehusen
All rights reserved


This thesis for the Doctor of Philosophy
degree by
Vicky Anne Seehusen
has been approved
by
Ellen A. Stevens

Laura D. Goodwin

Nancy M. Sanders
si, nQb
Date


Seehusen, Vicky Anne (Ph.D., Educational Leadership
and Innovation)
School of Education, University of Colorado at Denver
Coordinated Enrollment: Exploring Alternative Transfer
and Articulation Options for Community
College Students
Thesis directed by Associate Professor Ellen A.
Stevens
ABSTRACT
Community colleges are often the first point of
entry into higher education for students who are
academically under-prepared, poor, or minorities.
Despite arguments that community colleges may dissuade
students from attending four-year schools, many
community college students aspire to complete a
baccalaureate. Colorado, like many other states, is
struggling to provide access to higher education for
all who want it. Articulation and transfer agreements
have been implemented to create four-year degree paths
for community college students. Additionally, some
four-year colleges have developed enhanced transfer
programs that offer community college students
transfer incentives such as automatic scholarships and
iv


application fee waivers. The author has coined the
term "coordinated enrollment'1 to describe these
programs.
Numerous studies have examined the variables
that may cause a student to persist to four-year
degree completion. Few studies have examined the
impact, if any, of special transfer programs on degree
completion. In this study, the author interviewed 26
students who transferred using via a coordinated
enrollment program, and 29 who transferred under
regular articulation guidelines, to determine the
impact of the program on students' desire to continue
their education beyond community college.
Additionally, discriminant analysis was performed on
1023 student transfer records to determine the
statistical significance of the coordinated enrollment
program on four-year degree completion.
The interview findings revealed that the program
impacts approximately 50% of its participants to
continue their education beyond community college.
The discriminant analysis indicated that only 49.11%
of the cases were correctly classified. For this
49.11%, completing an associate degree, and/or
maintaining a high community college grade point
v


I
I
average (GPA) were the most likely predictors of
persistence at the four-year school.
The author initially developed a conceptual
model of how students are perceived to progress
through community colleges to four-year schools. The
study results indicated that the initial model is
flawed. A new model is introduced in the final
chapter. The final model illustrates that there are
numerous variables impacting persistence, some still
unknown, which suggests that future study of transfer
students, transfer programs, and articulation
agreements is necessary.
This abstract accurately represents the content of the
candidate's thesis. I recommend its publication.
Signed
Ellen Stevens
vi


DEDICATION
Dedicated to:
my husband Ken Ganskow, and my parents, Clarence
and Vonnie Seehusen. I love you.
my thesis advisor. Dr. Ellen Stevens, who truly
made this disseration a learning experience. I can
only strive to give as much to students as you do.
vii


CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS....................................xii
CHAPTER
1. INTRODUCTION..................................1
Conceptual Framework .................... 3
2 . LITERATURE REVIEW.............................9
The Changing Community College
Function ................................ 9
Opponents Of Community Colleges .... 12
Proponents Of Community Colleges ... 18
Variables That Relate To Transfer ....... 21
Defining A Transfer Student ........ 24
Why Study Transfer Programs? ....... 26
The Importance of a Baccalaureate . 29
Programs That Assist the Transfer
Function .......................... 29
Summary..................................36
Implications of the Research ........... 37
Research Questions ..................... 39
3 METHODS......................................40
Procedures ............................. 41
Selection of Participants ......... 41
Data Collection.....................45
Vlll


Sample ............................ 49
Analysis.................................52
Qualitative Data Analysis and
Coding ............................ 52
Quantitative Data Analysis and
Coding ............................ 54
4. CREATING NEW OPTIONS FOR THE TRANSFER
STUDENT......................................59
Summary..................................68
Conclusions ............................ 71
5. THE IMPACT OF COORDINATED ENROLLMENT ON
COMMUNITY COLLEGE STUDENTS ................. 73
The Advising Process ................... 75
Applause and Criticism..............77
The Impact of UNC Bound on Students .... 85
UNC Bound Program Influenced
Students to Enroll ................ 85
UNC Bound Program Had No Impact .... 87
Transfer Experiences of Direct Transfer
Students ............................... 88
Nineteen Students Found
Transfer Easy.......................88
Direct Transfer Students Found
Transfer Difficult ................ 90
What Influences Direct Transfer
Students to Continue Their Education? ... 91
Need Degree to Accomplish Career
Goals...............................92
Other Reasons to Get a Degree.......92
ix


Other Differences Between Transfer
Groups ............................ 92
Summary..................................95
Conclusions ............................ 99
6. HOW COORDINATED ENROLLMENT AFFECTS
COMMUNITY COLLEGE STUDENTS IN FOUR YEAR
DEGREE COMPLETION ......................... 103
The Discriminant Analysis...............104
Transfer and Its Relationship to GPA ... 110
Students1 Reactions to Academic and
Environmental Factors ................. 113
The Impact of Academic Factors
on UNC Bound Students' GPAs........113
The Impact of Environmental
Factors on UNC Bound
Students' GPAs.....................114
The Impact of Academic Factors on
Direct Transfer Students' GPAs .... 116
The Impact of Environmental
Factors on Direct Transfer
Students GPAs....................117
Conclusions ........................... 118
7. CONCLUSIONS, IMPLICATIONS, AREAS FOR
FUTURE STUDY, FINAL THOUGHTS .............. 120
Conclusions ........................... 120
Graphic Illustrations of the Study
Results ............................... 122
Policy Implications ................... 131
Faculty Involvement in Creating
Transfer Programs ................ 133
x


Helping Students Make Wise
Transfer Choices ...........
134
More University Investment ....... 135
The Community Colleges Role in
Transfer ......................... 138
Areas for Future Study..................139
Final Comments..........................142
APPENDIX
A. Interview Protocol for Program Creators
and Administrators..........................145
B. President Interview Protocol .............. 146
C. Transfer Counselor Interview Protocol ..... 147
D. Student Interview Profile ................. 148
E. Letter of Introduction to Students..........149
F. UNC Bound Program Proposal ................ 150
G. Policies and Regulations .................. 153
H. Coding Sheet for Student Interviews ....... 157
REFERENCES.........................................159
XX


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
Grateful and heartfelt thanks to:
My committee members, who provided constructive
criticism that enhanced this work;
Dr. Tom Gavin, who patiently helped me define the
scope of the data collection and provided all the
quantitative data;
Professor Marilyn Smith, who proofread so many
iterations of this document that she could recite
passages in her sleep;
Dr. Jim Nimmer, who assisted with the statistical
analysis and widened my knowledge of statistical
techniques;
and, of course, the University of Northern Colorado
(UNC). UNC staff supported this research and assisted
in the data collection. It is indicative of UNC's
desire to continue to be on the cutting edge as a
provider of viable transfer options for community
college students. UNC is constantly striving to
improve its transfer programs and truly cares about
the student.
xii


CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
The Colorado Commission on Higher Education
(CCHE, 1991) states that the demand for higher
education will increase in Colorado over the next
seven years. Assuming that all things remain the
same, the Colorado State Demographer's Office projects
a 9.7% increase in higher education enrollment even
though population growth will remain relatively
unchanged.
Much of this increased enrollment can be
attributed to two reasons. Firstly, students in
higher education today exhibit many more distinct
characteristics than their predecessors. Today's
students are life-long learners, place-bound students,
working adults, re-entry adults, individuals in rural
communities, and members of under-represented racial
and ethnic groups. These students are also older,
more diverse, more experienced, more likely to attend
classes part-time than full-time, and more likely to
combine work and school. Secondly, high school
graduation rates in Colorado are expected to increase
1


by 3 5% over the next decade. This increase may result
in more traditional 18-21 year old students seeking
baccalaureate degrees.
Romano (1994) quotes Dwayne Nuzum, executive
director of CCHE, who says, "One of the questions we
face is whether we should have more students attend
their first two years at community colleges."
Students are already making that choice. Currently,
60% of the students who attend community colleges
intend to transfer to four-year institutions. This is
a 20% increase over a few years ago when only 40% of
community college students had four-year degree
aspirations (Romano, 1994, p. 18A).
Some state supported universities are asking the
same question that Nuzum asks. On August 23, 1994,
Roderic Park, the chancellor of the University of
Colorado at Boulder (C.U.), suggested that C.U. should
consider increasing the number of upper-level students
while limiting the number of freshmen and sophomores
(Romano, 1994) He implied that more lower-division
students should be attending community colleges
instead. The reason is funding. Park believes that a
relatively even number of upper- and lower-division
students may be inappropriate for a research
2


university like C.U. C.U. receives a substantial
amount of non-state funding for sponsored research;
upper division students assist in this research.
gongeptual .EEansworis
Clearly, Colorado educators are considering the
role that economics play in higher education in this
state. At the four-year institutional level,
universities are forced to deny students access
because of strained or limited resources (CCHE, 1995).
At the student level, potential baccalaureate
recipients who cannot afford the continually
escalating costs of four-year institutions are
attending two-year community colleges to complete
basic college requirements (Petty, 1991).
These students often intend to transfer to a
four-year school. Community colleges, originally
called junior colleges, were created to serve as a
stepping stone to the four-year school (Knoell, 1982);
they were not intended to be the final higher
education experience for students (Priest, 1974).
Most community college students were expected to
complete their freshmen and sophomore years of study
and proceed to a four-year institution to complete the
3


baccalaureate. Educators envisioned that community
colleges would provide lower level courses so that the
four year schools could concentrate energy on talented
upper level students; would prepare students with poor
high school academic records for four-year schools;
or, would weed out those students who really wouldn't
or couldn't persist to four-year degree completion
(Higbee, 1973; Roueche, 1988). When community
colleges were called junior colleges, they
accomplished these goals. As junior colleges became
more responsive to their community's needs, they
changed their names and their missions. Communication
gaps developed between the community colleges and the
four-year schools making transfer and articulation
difficult.
In the late eighties, CCHE took major steps to
improve the articulation process and assure that
transfer would be a relatively hassle-free experience
for the student by mandating that:
1. All state-supported four-year institutions must
create transfer guides that clearly spell out what
courses transfer (and what the course equivalencies
are) into their institutions.
4


2. All state-supported four-year institutions must
accept as transfer credits a group of courses, called
the "common core."
This mandate was designed to ease the entire
transfer process for the four-year aspirant; even
vocational degree students would be assured of some
transferable courses since all the Associate of
Applied Science (AAS) degrees require some core
courses (see Figure 1.1) .
In Figure 1.1, we see that the student begins by
enrolling at the community college. He/she might
begin an Associate of Arts (AA) or Associate of
Science (AS) program with the long-term intent of
transfer to a four-year school. Alternatively, he/she
may begin a certificate or an AAS degree with no long-
term intent of transfer; while these students
generally seek to enhance job opportunities, some may
also transfer to a four-year school. The shaded path
is the focus for CCHE and colleges reviewing transfer.
Any student seeking a degree or certificate is
assigned a counselor who advises the student on
courses to take and/or provides information about
four-year institutions and what courses the four-year
school will accept towards baccalaureate completion.
5


Figure 1.1. Transfer and articulation paths for
community college students.
6


Throughout this educational experience, some
students will drop out prior to completion. Others
will complete their proposed plan of study, some of
whom may move on to the four-year schools. Others
will change their proposed plan of study.
Of those that persist, some may determine that
they are ready to move on to four-year schools prior
to completion of their studies at the community
college. Credits earned at the community college will
be matched against the common core and the transfer
guides for the four-year institution of choice. The
student will transfer and pursue completion of the
baccalaureate.
Many two-year and four-year schools believe the
transfer model shown in Figure 1.1 is an accurate
portrayal of how students progress through the system.
On the other hand, a few institutions have determined
that this model does not meet all prospective transfer
students' needs. These schools have developed
additional transfer programs that they believe further
ease the transfer process and, consequently, attract
students that might not otherwise transfer to their
institutions.
7


Colorado State University offers a program
called CSU Vital Connections; the University of
Colorado, Colorado Springs offers a program called
University Connection; and the University of Northern
Colorado offers a program called UNC Bound. While the
services offered by these programs vary, they all have
one thing in common: the prospective transfer student
signs a letter of intent with the institution of
choice and is then provided with some additional
support services from the four-year institution (e.g.,
academic counseling, campus orientations, tuition
scholarships). These services are touted as
activities that will ease the transfer process and
consequently assist more students in persisting to a
four-year degree.
No empirical evidence exists to suggest that
these programs created to augment state mandates
assist the student in four-year degree completion.
Thus, this study will examine the efficacy of the
comprehensive articulation/transfer agreement.
8


CHAPTER 2
LITERATURE REVIEW
The -Chanctina Community College Function
In 1892, William Harper, president of the
University of Chicago, succeeded in separating the
first and last two years into the academic college and
the university college. According to Higbee (1973),
Harper created the first junior college ". .by
extending Jolliet High School in Jolliet, Illinois,
upwards to include the thirteenth and fourteenth
school years" (p. 44). These colleges were part of
the common-school system that extended from
kindergarten through grade 14, sharing functions,
administration, some faculty, and sometimes facilities
(Knoell, 1982). Roueche (1988) describes the impetus
behind community college formation:
Thomas Jefferson conceived the idea of a
community college but it was the emergence of
the modern American University and a core of
university presidents that in fact gave birth to
the only uniquely American contribution to
education. . The leaders of these American
universities . felt that if the university
9


could be freed of the necessity to provide what
most believed to be the capstone years of
secondary education (grades thirteen and
fourteen), then the university might well
become, in the word of Henry A. Tappan, former
president of the University of Michigan, "purely
universities without any admixture of collegial
tuition." (p. 53-54)
The universities and their faculties were
looking for ways to reduce the freshmen and sophomore
population so they could concentrate their energies on
talented upper division and graduate students
(Roueche, 1988). "During the early years the
relationship Harper envisioned between the junior
college and the universities developed moderately
well" (Higbee, 1973, p. 44).
In the 1950s, the local junior colleges were, in
many areas, considered "high school with ash trays"
(Priest, 1974, p. 1). In the sixties, the junior
college began to have its own identity and became a
respectable community institution. It abandoned the
word "junior" and substituted "community." Knoell
(1982) believed that use of the word community
attested to their local orientation and their desire
to be free of the "junior" partnership connotation,
especially since community colleges were expanding
vocational program offerings and shifting the emphasis
away from transfer.
10


Knoell (1982) defined the evolution of community
colleges in terms of "generations." In the third
generation, which began in the 1970s, she says "public
two-year institutions became known as comprehensive
community colleges, with some further broadening of
functions but most of all, with an expansion of the
kinds of student clientele to be served" (p. 7). The
recent high school graduate ceased to be the typical
student; in fact, it was no longer possible to say
that a certain type of student was the norm. During
this same time frame, enrollments in liberal arts and
general education at community colleges shifted
downward and continued downward through the 1980's -
57% in 1970-1971, and 28% in 1984-85 (Barry & Barry,
1992) .
The downward shifts in academic programs were
due in large part to appropriation of federal and
state funds specifically for vocational programs.
This caused a weakening in the relationships with
four-year institutions (Higbee, 1973) "Student
interest (in vocational programs) swelled as the wages
for service trades that did not require a
baccalaureate increased significantly and as student
11


perception of the relative value of a baccalaureate
changed" (Kissler, 1982, p. 22) .
It is perhaps this interest in vocational
programs that kept university and four-year college
personnel from readily accepting the graduates of
community college programs. Articulation and transfer
was difficult for most community college students as
university personnel believed that these students
should have attended their institutions initially if
they were interested in and capable of achieving a
four-year degree (Johnstone, 1990).
Opponents Of Community Colleges
University personnel who were less than
welcoming of community college transfers found
corroboration for their positions in various research
studies. Karabel (1986) and Pincus (1986) believed
that students who attended a community college would
be influenced by the vocational programs to the point
that they would not persist to a four-year degree,
thereby widening the existing socio-economic chasm.
Karabel (1986) was so sure of his position that he
stated unequivocally that community colleges
constitute the bottom track of the system of higher
12


education. He further asserted that multitudes of
surveys confirmed that the students attending
community colleges have lower parental income,
occupational status, and educational attainment. The
reason is that community colleges serve as the
traditional gate of entry into higher education for
minorities, particularly blacks, Hispanics and
American Indians. Pincus (1986) echoed these
sentiments and criticized community colleges for their
strong vocational bent. According to Pincus,
... there is no good evidence that vocational
education in community colleges delivers on the
promises of secure employment, decent pay, and
ample career opportunities. In fact, most of the
evidence suggests that while a few relatively
privileged workers can make use of community
colleges to upgrade their skills, most students
would be better advised to get bachelor's
degrees if they can. (p. 50)
Alba and Lavin (1981) did not blame vocational
education specifically for having a discouraging
effect on educational attainment, but they did believe
that attending community colleges would have a
detrimental effect on four-year degree completion.
They argued that the disadvantages of attending
community colleges crystallize around the end of the
second year. In a study comparing community college
students to students at a four-year institution. Alba
13


and Lavin found that even when variables such as
performance, ethnicity, parental education, and math
and reading scores were held constant during the first
two years of college, second year students at every
community college were less likely to return than
those at any four-year college. Moreover, the
community college student was less likely to persist
to four-year degree completion. They further stated
that the community college transfer student had a
lower overall performance as a junior than the native
student at the same level. Alba and Lavin vaguely
blamed community college faculty and student peers who
convinced the prospective transfer than he/she was not
four-year college material.
Dougherty (1987) made no attempt to be vague.
He clearly cited a number of factors he believed
explained why entrance into community colleges hinders
the educational attainment of students. First,
community colleges allow students in with lower
academic abilities, resulting in higher dropout rates.
They also appear to promote vocational training over
academic education. Thirdly, four-year colleges have
a distaste for community college transfer students.
Community college transfer students also have
14


difficulty securing financial aid at the four-year
school. These same transfer students have difficulty
becoming socially integrated in new and unfamiliar
schools. Finally, these students face loss of credits
and are not as well prepared for upper division work.
Velez (1985) also concluded that where one
starts college drastically affects the chances of
completing the baccalaureate. He said that students
who start in a two-year college are less likely to
finish than students who start in a four-year college.
Velez also said, however, that other variables, such
as religious background, educational aspirations,
academic performance in college, participation in
work-study programs and living on campus, can and do
exert substantial positive effects on finishing a
four-year degree. Lee & Frank (1989) have also
studied student characteristics that affect transfer.
They believed that family background and advantage are
the largest predictors of academic success:
While relatively large numbers of students
are using community colleges as an
alternative route to four-year college, it
is students who could attend four-year
college in the first place-by virtue of
higher family income and better academic
preparation and motivation-who appear to be
taking advantage of this inexpensive
alternative.(p. 19)
15


Lee and Frank differed from Velez, Alba, Lavin
and the others because they said that there is little
evidence to show that community colleges change
individuals much in other words, community colleges
have little effect over persistence to four-year
degree completion: those who really aspire to a four-
year degree will complete one regardless of whether
they are enrolled in a community college or not.
In a similar vein of research, Bohr, Pascarella,
Nora et al. (1994) found that when controls were made
for pre-college cognitive skills, place of residence,
age, credit hours taken, and work obligations, no
significant differences were found between samples of
two-year college and four-year university students in
terms of freshmen year gains in reading comprehension,
mathematics and critical thinking. This is distinctly
opposite of Alba's and Lavin's (1981) findings that
community college students who transferred as juniors
appeared to be distinctly inferior in the grades and
credits they earned when compared to juniors who were
natives of the four-year college.
None of these studies looked at the four-year
native student persistence compared to transfer
student persistence, leading the reader to believe
16


that persistence to a baccalaureate is a problem
confined to community colleges transfer students.
There is no mention made of the high drop-out rate of
native students those students who start their
baccalaureate program at four-year institutions and
the subsequent enrollment of many of these students at
community colleges. Most of the studies attempted to
generalize their findings to community colleges as a
whole, but the results are questionable due to the
sample and the age of the studies. The Alba and Lavin
(1981) study was weak on many scores. The authors
claimed that the study was entirely scientific, but
they did not use a random sample. Rather, they
studied a community college system where the majority
of the students were minorities. Additionally, Alba
and Lavin made no scientific attempt to describe why
community college students had such difficulty
persisting to four-year degree completion. Pincus
(1986) did not cite new statistics but referred the
reader back to a study he had accomplished five years
previously.
The most impartial study appeared to be the one
carried out by Karabel (1986). He admitted that his
data were skewed because of the group of transfer
17


students that he used for calculating transfer
percentages. He excused this data skewing by-
explaining that there is no agreed upon technique for
calculating the proportion of community college
students who transfer to four-year institutions.
Karabel also concluded that there is much research to
be done. He suggested looking at the effects of
community colleges on the individual; defining a true
transfer rate; defining the types of students who
succeed in transferring; and looking at various state
structures of higher education to see if they make a
difference in the distribution of opportunity.
Dougherty (1987) said that the evidence on
effectiveness of community colleges provided support
for both supporters and critics of the community
college. Perhaps he said it best when he said, "There
is still no agreement on the effects of community
colleges, and there is very little discussion of how
those effects are produced (p. 87).
Proponents Of Community Colleges
Birenbaum (1986) offered a decidedly different
perspective about the effects of community colleges
and also argued that a liberal arts degree alone is
18


not a guarantee of employment. He described a huge
gap between four-year institution's endeavors to
create a homogeneous group and the reality of academic
markets in the U.S. Birenbaum said that community
colleges parallel "the democratic ideal of an open
admissions America ... we have an historic
commitment to equal opportunity for participation"
(Birenbaum, 1986, p. 3). Those four-year institutions
that desire to create a homogeneous group are ignoring
the large heterogeneous population. Birenbaum said:
Consider the profile of the twelve million
people currently enrolled in the nation's
colleges and universities. Two-thirds are
commuters, and 50% of all the undergraduates are
enrolled in the community colleges, which
become, therefore, a major if not the only
source for whatever "liberal" education these
undergraduates receive. Of all of the students
and those who teach them, 40% are part-timers.
Within five years, at least half of all the
students in higher education will be over 25,
and more than a fifth will be over 35. Only
half who now enroll ever achieve the
baccalaureate, and more than half who earn the
degree take more than four years to do so.
Half attend more than one college in the process
of obtaining the degree. Among the secondary
school graduates who go on to college, one out
of three delays entry by at least one year after
high school. Transfers account for more than
40% of the enrollments in most undergraduate
colleges. The majority of the twelve million
are enrolled in large, urban-based institutions.
Nearly 80% [of the twelve million enrolled] now
attend public colleges and universities. In
some regions of the country, the number of four-
year college graduates who subsequently enroll
19


in two year colleges for additional credentials
(e.g. business technology, computer science,
drafting, automotive technology) exceeds the
number of two-year college graduates
transferring into the four-year system."(p. 7)
Birenbaum was endeavoring to make a case that
four-year colleges are failing to do their jobs while
community colleges are doing a better than expected
job. David Petty (1991), president of North Country
Community College in New York, did this also. He said
that out of the 71% enrolled in four-year colleges in
1980, only 49% had achieved a bachelor's degree by
1987 which translates into less than half of the high
ability high school graduates persisting to a degree
within seven years. Petty stated that four-year
schools are "cooling out more than half of the higher
ability students they enroll and that many (Petty did
not cite any statistics) of these students who left
four-year schools eventually transferred to two-year
colleges (Petty, 1991).
In 1992, Kajstura and Keim studied 296 reverse
transfers." They concluded that there are five main
reasons that students leave four-year colleges:
personal reasons; financial reasons; academic
difficulty; career change; and inability to decide on
career goals. They also listed seven reasons that
20


these reverse transfers enrolled at a community
college: close proximity to home; low tuition;
convenient class times; instructional quality; job
training opportunity; GPA improvement; and advice of
relatives or friends. Kajstura and Keim also found
that 42% of their sample desired to complete courses
for transfer back to four-year institutions to obtain
a baccalaureate. Petty (1991) stated, "Community
college transfers are filling the seats made vacant by
. . attrition and have buoyed graduation rates at
senior institutions. . (p. 3).
Variables.That Relate To Transfer
Is it possible to determine who is likely to
transfer from a community college to a four-year
institution so that both institutions can encourage
the students and ease the transition? Some studies
(Adelman, 1988, Grubb, 1991; Lee & Frank, 1989;
Palmer, 1991) have attempted to identify possible
transfer students based on a variety of variables.
Variables reoccurring in these studies included:
1. High School Program: academic or vocational. The
studies indicated that students enrolled in vocational
programs in high school are less likely to persist to
21


a baccalaureate (Adelman, 1988, Grubb, 1991; Lee &
Frank, 1989; Palmer, 1991).
2. Grade Point Average (GPA) of student while
attending community college (Adelman, 1988, Grubb,
1991; Lee & Frank, 1989; Palmer, 1991).
3. Full-time/part-time status of student while
attending community college. Full time was 12 or more
credit hours per semester; part-time was any number
less than 12 credits in a given semester. Also,
studies by Grubb (1991), Lee & Frank (1989), and
Palmer (1991) indicated that students who were
enrolled part-time were less likely to persist to a
baccalaureate.
4. Number of semesters student was enrolled full-time
at community college. Full time students were found
to be more likely to transfer than students who
attended community college part-time (Adelman, 1988,
Grubb, 1991; Lee & Frank, 1989; Palmer, 1991).
5. Number of academic courses student completed per
semester at community college (Adelman, 1988, Grubb,
1991; Lee & Frank, 1989; Palmer, 1991).
6. Socio-economic status of student, or family, if
the student still lived at home (Lee and Frank, 1989,
Grubb, 1991).
22


7. Ethnicity (Adelman, 1988, Grubb, 1991; Lee &
Frank, 1989; Palmer, 1991).
8. Gender (Adelman, 1988, Grubb, 1991; Lee & Frank,
1989; Palmer, 1991).
9. Completion of an associate degree. Ludwig and
Palmer (1993) suggested that obtaining an associate
degree prior to transfer could have a positive impact
on persistence.
10. Age. Lee and Frank (1989) looked at the age of
transfer students and the contemplated age that the
students would be entering the workforce full-time.
Table 2.1 displays the preceding variables with
partitioning for socio-economic status.
High school Program Vocational Academic
Grade Point Average 3.0 or above 2.0 to 3.0 below 2.0
Enrollment Status Full-time Part-time
Number of semesters student was enrolled full-time
No. academic courses completed
S.E.S. High Medium Low
Ethnicity White Black/Hispanic Other
Gender Male Female
Completion of Associate Degree Yes No
Age
Table 2.1. Variables that relate to transfer.
23


Lee and Frank found in their study that students
in middle income and upper income families who were
enrolled in academic programs in high school
(especially in math and science) and who attended
community college full-time were twice as likely to
transfer to a four-year institution. Students who
transfer also reported twice as many semesters as
full-time students at the community college as
students who did not transfer. They also had higher
GPAs than non-transferees. The more academic courses
a student completed at the community college also had
a positive effect on transfer; however, the more hours
community college students worked was an inhibitor.
White males were more likely to transfer than white
females and minorities (both male and female).
Defining.A Transfer Student
Palmer (1991) listed some of the same variables
that Lee and Frank described, but he suggested that
other variables affect transfer, including the
strength of the liberal arts curriculum, the transfer
arrangements, and the matriculation and guidance
services. This means that the variables described in
the preceding section cannot be used alone to predict
24


which students at a community college will be transfer
students. Perhaps the mere experience of attending
college will have a positive (or negative)
relationship with transfer. The National Effective
Transfer Consortium (NETC) (1990) has divided
community college students into four types, each with
a distinctive transfer pattern:
1. Type 1 student: lists transfer as a goal at time
of admission and does transfer
2. Type 2 student: lists transfer as a goal at time
of admission and does not transfer
3. Type 3 student: does not list transfer as a goal
at time of admission but does transfer
4. Type 4 student: does not list transfer as a goal
at time of admission and does not transfer
Type one and two students are often
characterized as younger, recently graduated from high
school, and from ethnic groups and family backgrounds
with established patterns of academic achievement.
Type three students are often entering women, minority
students from ethnic groups that are under-represented
at four-year institutions, students from poor
backgrounds, students whose parents did not complete
any post-secondary education and older people seeking
25


new opportunities. Type four students are generally
those enrolled in vocational programs
With all the definitions, student characteris-
tics and predictor variables, we still do not know who
all the real transfer students will be. What we do
have, however, is a clear definition of a transfer
student. This definition was provided by The Center
for the Study of Community Colleges (Cohen, 1992) .
The Center defined a transfer student as one who has
completed at least twelve transferable college units
at a community college, within four years and who is
not simultaneously enrolled at a four-year
institution. Transfer courses can be vocational but
do not include remedial courses. This definition did
not assume that all transfer students were recent high
school graduates. It assumed that students transfer
at any point in time, and that not all students would
complete an associate degree. The Center's definition
did, however, exclude students who already had a
baccalaureate (Hirose, 1994).
Whv. Study Transfer Programs?
As previously mentioned, many argue that open
door admissions policies of community colleges appeal
26


to those who are academically unprepared for the
rigors of a four-year institution (Bowles, 1988,
Karabel, 1986, Kissler, 1982). While this is true,
there is now substantial literature that indicated
that by 1970, about half of the new full-time
community college students reported that they had been
in the top half of their graduating high school class.
By the 1980's, this number had grown to about three
fourths. Additionally, Bernstein (1986) stated that
approximately 20% of the high school graduates who
tested in the top quarter of their classes currently
enroll in community colleges. As with reverse
transfers, these high school students often pick
community colleges because of low cost and
geographical proximity. Most of these high school
students aspire to complete baccalaureate degrees
(Bernstein, 1986) .
Community colleges also appeal to older,
displaced workers who need new or enhanced job skills,
to single mothers or displaced homemakers preparing to
enter the workforce for the first time, and to college
graduates looking for technical skills that will lead
to employment. In the 1970's, Knoell (1982) saw a new
group of community college students "characterized by
27


a vast increase in heterogeneity of the student body
with respect to age, ethnicity, readiness or ability
to do college-level work, previous educational
attainment, interests and goals, and objectives being
pursued in the community college" (p. 7) .
As was expected, Knoell (1982) found that many
community college students expressed an interest in
transfer to four-year institutions, and many
eventually did transfer. What is interesting is that
many students who did not express an interest in
transfer eventually transferred to four-year colleges.
These are the type three students (see page 26), who
do not match with the predictor variables, yet they do
transfer.
Perhaps this transfer activity is not so
unexpected in the wake of what Donovan (1992) referred
to as an emerging national trend" academic
partnerships between two-year and four-year
institutions that create smooth transfer paths for
community college students in certain programs such as
math and science. Donovan believed that additional
academic programs (i.e., English) could also create
partnerships. Institutions that are considering
implementing a transfer program or partnership could
28


benefit from research and reports about the successes
and failures of existing transfer programs and
partnerships.
The Importance, of, a Baccalaureate
Enrollment at community colleges continues to
grow, and research on the transfer function is
extensive regardless of whether one is a community
college proponent or not. Growth is due in large part
to economic changes of the 1990's which encourage
students to persist to a four-year degree just to
compete for entry level jobs. Gozenbach (1993)
stated:
Fenner (1989) predicted that in the 1990's, new
jobs will require more education and more highly
skilled workers due to technology. . .There
will be a greater demand for higher skill levels
in new jobs than in the jobs of today. ... to
make a productive contribution to the economy,
the amount of education and knowledge needed
will increase, (p. 23)
Proccrams.That .Assist -the Transfer Function
Most community colleges offer courses intended
for transfer into four-year degree programs, but Lee
and Frank (1989) stated, "Just offering the
29


opportunity, without an institutional press in that
direction, does not seem adequate for these colleges,
if they claim to provide a second chance for higher
education to socially and academically disadvantaged
students"(p. 19).
One "institutional press" for persistence to a
four-year degree has been exhibited through the
creation of "dual enrollment" and "coordinated
admissions" programs. In these programs, students
attend community colleges and either simultaneously
enroll at a four-year institution or gain exposure to
the four-year institution through a variety of inter-
institutional activities. The community college(s)
and four-year institution work closely together to
assure that the student takes transferable courses and
has a spot as a junior at the four-year college. The
community-college student becomes familiar with the
four-year institution and how it operates prior to
transfer and is less subject to transfer shock. The
institution benefits also. Thomas (1988), in
describing the New Jersey Institute of Technology
(NJIT) dual enrollment program, said that dual
admissions programs enlarge the transfer options
available to community college students and that
30


transfer arrangements make sense for all concerned.
The student who may not have taken high school
seriously benefits because he/she gets another chance
at four years of higher education. The state benefits
by providing students with opportunities to receive
high-quality college education at a reduced total
cost. Finally, the colleges benefit by
differentiating their missions without closing their
doors to students who would otherwise be excluded from
universities for financial reasons or for deficiencies
in preparation.
In response to major demand for higher
education, the University of Hawaii System adopted a
transfer program called the Coordinated Admission
Program over 20 years ago (Dyer, 1973) This program
effects all university campuses, two-year campuses,
and four-year liberal arts campuses within the
University of Hawaii system. The goals of the program
are to: facilitate guidance programs in Hawaii's high
schools by assisting students in the college decision
making, and by providing consistent and timely
information on Hawaii's state colleges; to reduce the
duplication of effort by students and admissions
officers, especially that which results from multiple
31


applications to campuses of the University system; to
overcome the problem of excessive demand by applicants
for admission to one campus in the University System;
and, finally, to meet short and long-term needs for
data related to planning, budgeting, and decision
making processes necessary for coping with the growing
enrollment demands faced by some campuses and programs
within the University system. The most obvious
benefits to the University system are a "minimum of
cost and confusion and a maximum of public and
legislative support" (Dyer, p. 113).
Colorado does not have a university system
comparable to that of Hawaii. The community colleges
are independently run, and transfer students from
these institutions will transfer (or "feed") into one
of many universities and four-year colleges, both
state supported and private. This doesn't mean that
the state colleges and universities do not communicate
with each other. In 1988, the CCHE issued a policy
statement that said that state supported two-year and
four-year institutions would provide equitable
treatment to native and transfer students. One of the
results of this statement was "common core" a group
of courses that have the same course number schema and
I
32


curriculum description at all state community colleges
and are guaranteed to transfer from one community
college to another. Additionally, these courses are
generally transferable to the state four-year colleges
and universities although they may not be accepted as
replacements for required courses. The core, by its
definition, meets the lower division general
education requirements of most baccalaureate degree
granting programs in the state's public supported
four-year institutions" (Red Rocks Community College
Catalog, 1995, p. 5). This often causes confusion for
the community college student transferring to a four-
year school. Fortunately, the CCHE policy statement
also mandates that the two-year and four-year schools
maintain updated articulation agreements and transfer
guides and designate an office to coordinate transfer
activity and maintain student records (CCHE, 1988).
The transfer guides provided by the four-year schools
define how the core courses, and other courses, will
transfer into various programs at their schools.
The objective of these mandates is to simplify
and streamline the transfer and articulation process
for the prospective transfer student. Some four-year
colleges and universities in Colorado have gone beyond
33


the state mandates in response to competition for
community college transfers. Some schools offer dual-
admissions programs similar to those at NJIT. One
Colorado University has opted for an alternative I
have chosen to call "coordinated enrollment"
(University of Northern Colorado UNC Bound Program
Proposal, 1990).
In coordinated enrollment, students at community
colleges sign forms indicating their intention to
transfer to a specific four-year institution.
Counselors from the destination institution, working
closely with the community college counselors, then
begin advising these students in an effort to ease and
facilitate transfer. Students are not allowed to
enroll at the four-year institution, but they are
guaranteed admission as juniors if they have an
associate degree with a GPA of 2.0 or above.
Evidence supports insisting on an associate
degree completion prior to transfer. Claggett and
Huntington (1991) reported on a voluntary project in
Maryland and found that students who transferred with
completed AA's or AS's were more likely to have a GPA
of 3.0 or higher at the university. Higher GPAs are
generally associated with persistence to degree
34


completion. Cohen (1992) agreed that transfer might
be strengthened if four-year institutions required an
associate degree and accepted it in its entirety.
Transfer is defined as the process of reviewing and
admitting applicants for advanced standing, and
articulation is defined as the process of aligning
courses and programs that are offered by two or more
institutions (from National Guidelines for Transfer
and Articulation). Obviously, requiring a degree and
accepting a transfer student as "junior" status would
ease the transfer process by eliminating the
articulation issues. In this way, schools could
reduce the complexity of that transfer process that
"may impede community college students from getting
their baccalaureate degrees" (Turner, 1991 p. 27).
The oldest coordinated enrollment program in
Colorado is called UNC Bound, first introduced in 1990
and designed to prepare community-college students for
entrance into the University of Northern Colorado (UNC
Bound Program Proposal, 1990). Benefits for community
college students enrolling in the UNC Bound program
include: UNC Bound members receive more assistance
from UNC counselors who visit the community college
campuses every other week, and a toll-free number for
35


modem connection to UNC's on-line admissions database;
the $30 UNC application fee is waived; UNC Bound
members are guaranteed admission if they complete the
common core of 34 hours or an associate degree at the
community college; non-minority UNC Bound transfer
students who maintain a 3.0 or better GPA at UNC
receive annual scholarships of $500; and minority UNC
Bound transfer students who maintain a 2.5 or better
GPA at UNC receive annual scholarships of $1000.
Coordinated enrollment programs appear to be in
keeping with the original intent of community colleges
- to take the burden of freshmen and sophomores off of
four-year institutions. In reviewing the literature,
however, it appears that these programs have been
overlooked by researchers. This study will attempt to
explore some of the overlooked aspects.
SummaEY
Regardless of whether one is an opponent of
community colleges (Alba & Lavin, 1981; Karabel, 1986;
Pincus, 1986) or a proponent (Birenbaum, 1986;
Kajstura & Keim, 1992; Petty, 1991), the fact remains
that enrollment at community colleges is on the rise
(Collison, 1991). If we are to believe the futurists
36


who predict that a baccalaureate will become more
important for even entry level jobs (Gozenbach, 1993),
then we must make every effort to provide all higher
education students with an opportunity to complete a
baccalaureate regardless of their starting
institution.
In response to socio-economic changes and
changes in enrollment patterns, community college and
university leaders began to create articulation and
transfer agreements for the benefit of all. Colorado
state higher education institutions (and many private
schools) followed these national trends creating
common core courses, articulation agreements, and
dual-enrollment programs. These efforts have met with
some success in assisting students in the transfer
process.
Implications of .the .Research
The literature proposes that certain types of
community college students will transfer regardless of
their experiences at the community college. The
literature also suggests that the complexity of the
transfer process and inadequate counseling hinders
many who would transfer (Johnstone, 1990; Ludwig &
37


Palmer, 1993; Turner, 1991). The literature is not
clear on why some students will transfer when they
originally indicated no desire to do so. Some authors
have vaguely attributed this positive transfer
phenomenon to dual-enrollment or dual-admissions.
Woodbury (1988) stated that there are many advantages
of dual admissions: it bonds the community college
student to a certain institution and strengthens that
students intention to complete an associate degree
and transfer; it creates a concrete path for the
student to take from the community college to the
four-year institution; it helps the transfer
institution anticipate junior class-size; it allows
the community college student to pay less; and it
allows the [younger] student to mature prior to
transfer. Woodbury's article was weak on two scores.
Firstly, the use of the word "dual-admissions" was
inappropriate because it tended to make the reader
believe that the student is enrolled in two schools
simultaneously. Secondly, the reasons for advocating
dual admissions were based on personal belief not
substantiated by scientific or planned study.
Other than rhetoric, very little has been
written about coordinated enrollment (or dual-
38


admissions" as Woodbury referred to it). It appears
that no one has attempted scientifically to study the
effects of coordinated enrollment on student desire to
persist to a four-year degree.
Research Questions
"Much of what educators do they do with the
belief that through their actions students will profit
in some way. Not surprisingly, therefore, a great
deal of educational research is conducted with an eye
toward seeing whether beliefs about alternative
educational practices are correct" (Jaeger, 1988, p.
391) .
The purpose of this study was to answer two
questions:
In the perceptions of the transfer counselors
and community college transfer students, how does
coordinated enrollment impact community college
students' transfer process?
How does coordinated enrollment, along with
other variables, predict enrollment status of
community college transfer students in a four-year
institution?
39


CHAPTER 3
METHODS
The purpose of this study was to examine one
enhanced transfer/articulation program, to determine
how this program impacted community college transfer
students, and to determine if the program affected
students' persistence to degree completion. I chose
to study the UNC Bound program because it has been in
place longer than any other enhanced transfer program
in Colorado. Additionally, UNC Bound is the most
comprehensive program of its type, offering
application fee waivers, automatic scholarships, and
guaranteed admission as a junior for those students
transferring with an AA/AS.
Three sources of data were collected: documents
related to the inception and implementation of the
program; admissions and records data; and interviews
with administrators, transfer counselors and students.
Documents included historical notes and memos provided
by the administration, as well as old press clippings
on file at UNC. Admissions and records data were
obtained from the Office of Institutional Research on
40


all community college transfer students who met the
conditions to be included in this study. I
interviewed the 3 program creators/administrators, 5
transfer counselors at community colleges, 26 UNC
Bound students and 29 direct transfer students.
Procedures
S.elgg£isn- of Parti.cip.cmts
The initial design for this study called for
defining three categories of participants in an
attempt to answer the two questions posed. The
participants for this study fell into three
categories: administrators, counselors, and students.
Category One included two of the three individuals
that developed the original UNC Bound program concept,
the individual who has administered the program at
state community colleges since the second year, and
the president of one of the community colleges that
participates in the UNC Bound program. I chose the
Category One participants to provide background
information about the program, including how and why
the program was created, what the goals of the program
were, and how the program has evolved. I was also
41


interested in how the program is perceived by
presidents at community colleges who participate in
UNC Bound. Appendix A is an interview protocol that
was administered to the program creators and
administrators. Appendix B is the interview protocol
administered to a community college president. I was
interested in his opinions about the program and
consequently asked open-ended, opinion-based
questions.
Category Two subjects included transfer
counselors at the Aims Community College (ACC),
Northeastern Junior College, Front Range Community
College (FRCC), and Morgan Community College (MCC),
the four main "feeder" schools for UNC. I pilot
tested the interview questions on the transfer
counselor at Red Rocks Community College (RRCC)
because this college also participates in the UNC
Bound program and "feeds" some students to UNC. The
data obtained from this interview were useful and were
included in the analysis. These participants were
asked to respond to questions about the ways in which
coordinated enrollment helps community college
students transfer and complete a degree (see Appendix
C) .
42


Category Three encompassed two groups of UNC
students who had transferred from community colleges:
those enrolled in the UNC Bound program with at least
32 credits or AA/AS degrees and those students that
transferred to UNC with at least 32 credit hours but
had not signed UNC Bound agreements (hereinafter
referred to as "direct transfers").
These two groups were further stratified by
persistence, degree completion or dropout. Dropout
status is defined as those who have not graduated and
have not re-enrolled for the Fall 1995 semester.
Group One was comprised of 409 students and Group Two
was comprised of 695 students.
Table 3.1 is a graphical representation of these
student groups:
UNC Bound still enrolled
completed degree
drop-out
still enrolled
Direct Transfer completed degree
drop-out
Table 3.1. Stratified student groups.
Category three subjects included all community
college transfers who were enrolled at UNC in Fall of
1992, or have enrolled after Fall 1992, up to Fall
43


1995. Students enrolled prior to Fall 1992 were not
considered because the UNC Bound program was not
implemented until 1990-91, and I made the assumption
that these students would have needed at least two
years to become seniors, to graduate, or to display an
intent to persist by maintaining continued enrollment.
I wanted to stratify the students into relatively
similar groups, so all students, regardless of
transfer status, had to be enrolled, dropped out, or
graduated in same time frame. I wanted to interview
students who were still enrolled or graduated (as of
Spring 1995) to obtain a "snapshot" of students'
attitudes and beliefs about the transfer process. I
subtracted the drop-outs from both the UNC Bound and
the Direct Transfer groups, leaving two groups of 362
and 191 students respectively. I chose every third
name from these two groups and mailed letters
informing them of my intent to try and contact them
over the following two weeks for the purposes of
completing a phone interview. Figure 3.1 on the
succeeding page is a graphical representation of this
selection/interview process.
44


Figure 3.1. Selection process for students.
Patit-ColJ.ag£iQa
Many departments within UNC provided information
and resources necessary to complete the data
collection phase of this study. UNC administrators
provided copies of all archived documents pertaining
to the creation and early administration of the UNC
Bound program. The Office of Institutional Research
provided records on all community college transfer
students from Fall 1992 to Fall 1995. The Admissions
office provided official UNC letterhead and envelopes
used to mail introduction letters to students who
would be contacted for interviews.
45


As previously described, the program creators
and administrators were asked to recount the process
undertaken to create the program. These interviews
were administered in the individuals' offices at pre-
arranged times. In addition to taking notes, I taped
and later transcribed each interview.
Transfer counselors were interviewed to
determine their perceptions of the UNC Bound program.
These interview were also taped and transcribed. All
counselors were given the option of being interviewed
in their office or via telephone. Only one counselor
chose to be interviewed in her office. These
interviews were also conducted at pre-arranged times.
Ascertaining students' satisfaction with the
transfer process and ease of integration into the
university was key to answering the research question
"How does coordinated enrollment impact community
college students prior to transfer?" The UNC
Department of Institutional Research offered to
perform the computer searches and provide me with the
names and addresses of all the students who met the
criteria for inclusion into the study. UNC initially
provided me with 674 students names and addresses.
The final UNC Bound and direct transfer lists that
46


were created for selecting prospective interview
students contained 409 students and 265 students
respectively. I chose every third name from each list
(33% of each group) and mailed letters to those
students indicating my intention to try to contact
them by phone within two weeks and ask them questions
about their personal transfer experiences. My goal
was to contact 10% of each group of students who
received a letter.
Over a two week period, I contacted 51 students:
26 who had transferred to UNC via UNC Bound and 25 who
had transferred to UNC as direct transfers. This was
6% of the UNC Bound participants and 9% of the direct
transfer students.
Approximately six weeks later, I requested that
UNC provide me with additional data about these two
student groups. At this point, it was discovered that
one of the codes used by the UNC Institutional
Research Department to identify the direct transfer
students was incorrect. The result was that four of
the students interviewed had actually transferred with
less than 32 hours. Two of these students had
transferred with 28 and 30 hours. Two of these
students transferred with less than 12 hours. I
47


interviewed six additional direct transfer students
who had transferred with over 30 hours of credit. I
removed the two students who had transferred with less
than 12 credit hours from the analysis. I retained
the data on the two students who had transferred with
28 and 30 hours. I did not reduce the sample size any
more than necessary, and, in my opinion, these
students had transferred with enough credits to be
considered as meeting the criteria for inclusion. In
the final analysis, 6% of the UNC Bound students and
4.36% (29/664) of the direct transfer students with 30
plus transfer credits were interviewed.
I attempted to obtain data on the variables that
researchers say relate to transfer and persistence
(see Table 2.1, page 24). The data on some of those
variables were not available. Table 3.2 lists the
variables I obtained on 409 UNC Bound students and 664
direct transfer students (with 32+ transfer hours).
1. Transfer program-direct transfer or UNC Bound
2. Completion of Associate degree
3. Ethnicity
4. Gender
5. Age
6. Community College GPA
Table 3.2. Available variables.
48


Additionally, as I interviewed the randomly
selected students, I obtained information on each
student's employment status while attending UNC and
his/her high school emphasis vocational or college
prep.
Sample
The final transfer student group included in the
statistical analysis contained 1073 students. Of this
total, 664 were direct transfer students and 409 were
UNC Bound program students.
Fifty-seven students were interviewed by phone;
26 were UNC Bound program participants and 31 were
direct transfer students. Twenty-nine of the direct
transfer students met the requirements of transferring
with 30 plus credit hours. Two direct transfer
students had transferred to UNC with an average of
12.33 credits. I excluded these two students from the
final analysis as they did not meet the initial
criteria for inclusion.
Of the final group (N=55), 21 were males and 34
were females. There were approximately equal numbers
of minorities in both programs. Over 88% of the
interviewed UNC Bound students transferred with an AA
49


degree while only 41% of the direct transfer students
achieved an AA degree prior to transfer to UNC. More
direct transfers were enrolled in math and science
programs than UNC Bound students (28% AND 19%
respectively). Table 3.3 provides a summary of this
information.
Direct transfer students DT % UNCB students UNCB %
Males 14 48% 7 27%
Females 15 52% 19 73%
No AA 17 59% 3 12%
AA 12 41% 23 88%
Minority 4 14% 3 12%
Non Minority 25 86% 23 88%
Table 3.3. Comparison of direct transfer to UNC
Bound students on selected factors.
Prior to performing any statistical analysis, I
conducted some comparisons to determine how closely
the sample represented the larger population. In
Figure 3.2, the black and gray columns represent the
total population of direct transfers and the direct
transfer sample respectively. The horizontally and
vertically striped columns represent the UNCB
population and the UNCB sample respectively.
50


DT %
DT Interviews %
>$ UNCB %
UNCB Interviews %
Figure 3.2. Population and sample comparisons.
51


In Figure 3.2, the UNC Bound students in the
interview sample closely represent the larger
population they were drawn from in regards to gender,
completion of an associate degree, and ethnicity.
With the exception of ethnicity, the direct transfer
students who were interviewed vary somewhat from the
larger population.
Analysis
Qualitative. Data. Analysis .and Coding
The information received from the program
creators was used to create a coding table to
categorize data obtained from student and counselor
interviews. It was important to understand the
program as fully as possible to answer the question
"How does coordinated enrollment impact community
college students prior to transfer?" Table 3.4 is the
final coding table. I did not expect that every group
of study participants would be able to respond to
every goal. The shaded boxes indicate where I
expected to get responses from study participants.
52


Program goals (as defined by the program creators) Responses of interviewed students Responses of interviewed counselors Data obtained from the quantitative analysis Onrlusicns
1. Increase the number of transfer students /*s ^ Lss-'S s ^ *V A-* % s * V Vf
2. Assist in budgeting and allocation of resources for the university
3. To provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain ' i ' ;
4. To sinplify, streamline, ease the transfer process for students ' r- > - '
5. To raise graduation percentages for minorities atm * > s \S s' lililPii ,.v.,.v.v.v.*v;wj;.,.v.v.v.v
Table 3.4. Coding table for program objectives.
Data obtained from transfer counselors and
student interviews was used to complete this coding
table. Prior to completing this coding table and
analyzing the responses, I categorized the open-ended
responses of the students who were interviewed. Due
to the volume of interviews, I found it necessary to
categorize students responses by employing a simple
number/letter coding structure. Each open-ended
question had two or three basic responses: for
example, the question "what was the impact of the UNC
Bound program on your decision to continue your
education?" could yield a response of "impact" or "no
53


impact." Most students provided additional
information to support their initial responses. To
code this additional information, I wrote one or two
sentence summaries of each student's responses for
each open-ended question. Summaries that occurred
more than twice were given a response code. The final
coding sheet created to summarize and code the student
interview data is displayed in Appendix H.
To check the reliability of the coding, a
graduate student also coded 20 randomly selected
student interviews using the coding sheet I created.
The graduate student coded 77 responses, compared with
my 76 responses for the same 20 records. We agreed on
68 of these responses, which resulted in a reliability
rating of 88%.
Quantitative Data Analysis and .Coding
The technique of discriminant analysis was used
to answer the question, "How does coordinated
enrollment, along with other variables, predict
enrollment status of community college transfer
students in a four-year institution?" This
statistical technique is appropriate because it can be
used to interpret group differences. Klecka (1980)
54


says that with the use of this statistical technique,
one is able to discriminate between groups on the
basis of some set of characteristics, determine how
well these characteristics discriminate, and which are
the most powerful discriminators.
In discriminant analysis, the independent
variables are called "discriminating variables."
These variables must be measured at the interval or
ratio level so that the means and variances can be
calculated. Klecka describes appropriate use of
discriminant analysis:
If a research situation defines the group
categories as dependent upon the discriminating
variables, then that situation is analogous to
the technique known as multiple regression. The
primary difference is that discriminant analysis
treats the dependent variable as being measured
on the nominal level, (p. 11)
In this study, the dependent variable used to
answer the question how does coordinated enrollment
affect community college students in degree
completion?" was a variable called enrollment
status." Each student in the population had either
graduated, dropped out, or was still enrolled at UNC.
Prior to employing the discriminant analysis
technique, each potential discriminating variable was
compared to enrollment status individually to
55


determine the strength of its association. In Table
3.5 below, these potential discriminating variables
are listed and the coding is described. Also
described is the initial statistical technique used to
determine the variable's suitability for inclusion or
exclusion in the discriminant analysis. All
statistical analysis was run using an alpha of .05.
Potential Discriminating Variable Coding Initial statistical technigue
1. Transfer program 0 = Direct Transfer 1 = UNC Bound Contingency table analysis
2. Completion of Associate degree 0 = none 1 = AA Contingency table analysis
3. Ethnicity 0 = minority 1 = non-minoritv Contingency table analysis
4. Gender 1 = female 2 = male Contingency table analysis
5. Age Age _ ANOVA
6. Community College GPA GPA ANOVA
Table 3.5. Potential discriminating variables.
Table 3.5 illustrates that contingency table
analyses were used on the dichotomous variables which
included: transfer program (c2=21.72, p<.001), AA
completion (c2=43.39, p<.001), ethnicity (c2=13.69,
p<.001), and gender (c2=5.01, p<.08). The result of
this initial analysis showed that the variable
"gender" appeared to have little association with
56


persistence. This variable was subsequently removed
prior to performing the discriminant analysis.
Separate ANOVA's were run on the continuous
variables which included age (F=8.27, p<.001), and
community college GPA (F=77.6, p<.001). This was an
appropriate first step to determine if the means of
either of these variables was statistically
significant when compared with the independent
variable, "enrollment status." As described above,
each variable indicated a significant F. In
summation, the variables that were included in the
discriminant analysis were transfer program,
completion of an associate degree, ethnicity, age, and
community college GPA.
I also ran a separate discriminant analysis on
the interview sample using the same discriminating
variables (transfer program, completion of an
associate degree, ethnicity, gender, age, and
community college GPA) used for the larger population.
Additionally, when interviewing the students, I
obtained the high school program emphasis of each
student and each student's employment status while
attending UNC. I cross tabulated each of these
variables against enrollment status to determine the
57


level of significance. There were empty cells in the
resulting table because the sample was not large
enough. The variable gender" was subsequently
excluded from the discriminant analysis performed on
the interviewed students. To summarize; the same set
of variables (transfer program, completion of an
associate degree, ethnicity, age, and community
college GPA) were used for the discriminant analysis
for the population and the discriminant analysis for
the interview sample.
Chapters Four, Five, and Six summarize the
results of the study. Chapter Four describes the
creation, components, and goals of the UNC Bound
program. Chapter Five answers the first question
posed in this study, and Chapter Six answers the
second question. Chapter Seven discusses the policy
implications and describes areas for future study.
58


CHAPTER 4
CREATING NEW OPTIONS FOR THE TRANSFER STUDENT:
THE CREATION OF A COORDINATED ENROLLMENT PROGRAM
The information, presented in this chapter is
necessary to set the background for the study. To
some extent, it is the governance policies that
Colorado institutions of higher education operate
under that create the problem under investigation in
this study. Colorado does not have a single,
comprehensive higher education governance system where
all two-year schools are really branches of a larger
university system. Such a system minimizes transfer
problems for the student who wishes to move from a
two-year to a four-year school in the system. For
example, Colorado does not require state supported
two-year schools and four-year schools to use a common
course numbering system, and/or common curriculum.
Thus a three-credit world history class at a Colorado
community college may not be accepted as a world-
history class at a four-year school even when
curriculum for both is compared and found to be
similar. In theory, a comprehensive system would not
only negate such problems but would also allow the
59


various branches to anticipate and react to enrollment
trends.
In Colorado, each university operates under its
own governance. Each university values its
individuality and touts its specialties. These
institutions assume that some students will naturally
be attracted to a certain four-year college or
university because that school does the best job
providing the program they want. Other students who
aren't interested in the specialty programs are "up
for grabs." Factors such as locality, cost, size, and
entrance requirements might play a big role in the
student's decision to attend a specific institution.
As already illustrated, many students will begin their
four-year education at community colleges because of
these factors. Four-year schools and universities
compete for these prospective transfer students to
increase full-time equivalent (FTE) and consequently,
the funding they receive from the state legislature.
One of the ways that these schools might compete for
transfer students is to offer programs that enhance
CCHE transfer mandates. UNO was the first university
to offer an enhanced transfer program. From its
inception, this was a highly publicized, overt effort
60


to attract community college students to UNC well
before they were ready to leave the community college.
Prior to the development of the UNC Bound
program, UNC had made overtures to all Colorado
community colleges indicating that it was happy to
accept their graduates and had no desire to compete
for lower division students. UNC published a transfer
guide even before CCHE mandated all four-year
institutions to publish such a document. During the
1989-90 time frame, Robert Dickinson, then president
of UNC, took additional steps to strengthen the
connection between UNC and Colorado community
colleges: each community college was provided with a
modem that students could use to contact the UNC
computer system and obtain transfer guide information
electronically.
In 1990, UNC administrators were considering
additional ways to increase enrollment at the
institution. In examining various options, the
university realized that any attempt to increase
freshmen enrollment would cause large problems for the
institution. Residence halls, which primarily housed
lower division students, were over capacity and had
61


been for several years. According to the former UNC
vice president of Student Affairs:
We decided that what would best fit for UNC
would be to increase at the upper division level
rather than the freshman level. About 2 years
ago, we started with 108% capacity in the halls
which was a nice challenge to deal with. So we
decided that we really don't want to grow more
at the freshmen level. We also wanted to keep
freshmen level classes down to a reasonable size
because we think that makes our niche different
from CSU or CU-Boulder. We say to our students
you won't find yourself in a class of 400
students." At UNC you might find yourself in a
class of 40 students but not 400 and (the
class will be) taught by a full professor and
not a graduate student (1995).
Additional impetus for new transfer options came
from the fact that UNC was facing harsh criticism from
the CCHE for its low rate of minority graduation: in
1991 it graduated 73 minorities, which was less than
7% of total enrollment. UNC had told the state it
would graduate 80 minorities (Brodie, 1992). Faced
with a goal of an 18.6% minority graduation rate by
the year 2000, UNC was looking at many options for
attracting minorities and keeping them through the
four-year program. Community colleges, with a 17%
minority enrollment were the place to find highly
qualified, academically-prepared minority students (N.
Scott, personal communication, May 9, 1992).
62


Simultaneous to UNC's actions, administrators
from Front Range Community College (FRCC) decided to
pursue a more solid transfer relationship with UNC.
The director of admissions at UNC, stated FRCC "felt
that the relationship between Front Range Community
College and UNC had matured to the point that there
were a lot of students interested in UNC and that the
existing relationship could be further enhanced by
some additional efforts on the side of the sending
institution as well as the receiving institution in
terms of transferring students (from interview
transcripts)." UNC's desire for upper level students
and FRCC's desire for enhanced transfer opportunities
created a good environment to develop a partnership
that would author a new transfer program. Program
creators generally agree, however, that the
partnership was enhanced by the previous good
relationship that UNC enjoyed with FRCC and community
colleges in general.
UNC wanted to continue to be at the forefront of
transfer innovation; having previously established
good working relationships with community colleges
made a new partnership easy to create. This
partnership spawned a new program concept called "UNC
63


Bound. The goal of this comprehensive program was to
facilitate the process for students desiring to
transfer to UNC from any community college that had
signed the UNC Bound Program Agreement. The UNC Bound
program was designed to simplify the transfer process
and enhance the transfer student's chances of academic
success. In addition, UNC believed that this program
could strengthen its recruitment of qualified
minorities. The initial program proposal included the
seven components as listed below and defined in Table
4.1 on the succeeding page:
1. Automatic/ Guaranteed Admission to UNC
2. Automatic Scholarships
3. Direct On-Line Electronic Connection with UNC
Admissions
4. Partnership Contacts with UNC Bound students
5. UNC Alumni Mentor Program
6. VIP Program Linkage
7. Academic "Stop-out" Plan
(See Appendix F for the complete initial program
proposal).
64


COMQMnt CrltrU
1. Automatic/ Guaranteed Admission to ONC the student can transfer after the completion of the AA or AS degree with a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or above
the student can transfer after completion of the common core" curriculum with a cumulative GPA of 2.50 or above.
2. Automatic Scholar- ships Minority applicants transferring to ONC with an AA/AS Degree and a GPA of 3.00 or above would be automatically offered a $1000 renewable President's Honor Cultural Diversity Transfer Award.
Minority applicants transferring to ONC with an AA/AS Degree and a GPA of 2.50 or above would be automatically offered a $500 renewable Provost's Honor Cultural Diversity Transfer Award.
Applicants, regardless of ethnicity, transferring to ONC with an AA/AS Degree and a GPA of 3.00 or above would be automatically offered a $500 renewable Provost's Honor Transfer Award.
Applicants, regardless of ethnicity, transferring to ONC 30 or more credit hours and GPA of 3.5 or above would be eligible to apply before March 1 of any year, for the $1000 renewable President's Honor Transfer Award.
3. Direct On-Line Electronic Connection with ONC Admissions Through the use of a modem and PC, the potential transfer student and the community college counseling office would have direct access to the most current ONC data, including the ONC undergraduate catalog and ONC/CC transfer guide.
4. Partnership Contacts with ONC Bound Students ONC admissions representative would make regular appointments to visit the ONC Bound student(s) and monitor the progress of the student.
Financial aid help sessions and pre-loan counseling would be conducted on the community college campus for those planning to transfer. All ONC Bound participants planning to transfer in the upcoming year would be requested to attend.
5. ONC Alumni Mentor Program A ONC alumnus who is employed at any community college that has a signed ONC Bound Program agreement would be asked to mentor ONC Bound participants.
6. VIP Program Linkage Students who signed up for ONC Bound would be identified and aided in the guidance process.
7. Academic "Stop-out" Plan Transfer students who encountered academic difficulty at ONC and were subject to academic suspension would be carefully counseled and offered a stop-out" plan that would permit them to continue their enrollment at the community college to rebuild their academic standing. When the student raised his/her GPA to a 2.00 or above and had completed 30 semester hours, the student would automatically be reinstated at ONC as a fully admitted degree-seeking student.
Table 4.1. Initial UNC Bound program criteria.
65


In May 1991, UNC added an additional requirement
to item one (Automatic/Guaranteed Admission): students
majoring in programs with special requirements would
be required to meet the specific guidelines of those
programs. This requirement was added because students
in programs such as nursing required different core
courses than the normal transfer core.
While the Program Policy document was being
created and undergoing initial modification, policy
documents were also being drawn up to clearly define
the Automatic Scholarship Transfer Program (see
Appendix G) By the end of March 1992, all eleven
system colleges, and the four district colleges had
signed agreements with UNC. Community college
presidents welcomed the agreement. Dr. Dorothy
Horrell, President of Red Rocks Community College
stated, it (the program) clearly sends the message
that they (UNC) value our students and will treat them
accordingly" (Brodie, 1992).
As UNC was adding community college partners,
the program was evolving. By summer 1992, the program
had been modified to offer scholarships to UNC Bound
students who had completed the state-defined core
transfer courses but did not receive an AA or AS. UNC
66


had originally considered offering scholarships to
these "core completers" who signed up for UNC Bound,
but decided that community colleges might see this as
a move to "steal" their students, thereby reducing
enrollment at the community colleges. As it turned
out, it was the community colleges who approached UNC
and suggested that scholarships be offered to students
who had completed the core. The community colleges
believed that some students were ready to, and should
transfer, after completing the core. They wanted
these students to have grant opportunities as well.
The signings and the new spirit of cooperation"
between UNC and two-year schools was highly publicized
in area newspapers. Additional media attention
focused on the impact of UNC Bound on minority
enrollment. Clearly, UNC was counting on the UNC
Bound program to assist in this endeavor. Dr. Byron
McClenney, president of Community College of Denver,
said that the scholarships offered by the UNC Bound
were necessary to get poor center-city kids (i.e.
minorities) to go to a rural institution (Brodie,
1992).
Recall figure 1.1 in Chapter One describing
traditional transfer options for community college
67


students. Figure 4.1 below represents how the UNC
Bound program was designed to create a simpler
transfer and articulation path for the community
college student:
Figure 4.1. UNC Bound transfer and articulation
path.
Summary
The program creators agree that the UNC Bound
Program had five specific goals:
1. to increase the number of transfer students;
68


2. to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer
process for students;
3. to provide transfer counselors with a program that
would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in
transfer counseling;
4. to raise graduation percentages for minorities;
5. and, to assist in budgeting decisions and
allocation of resources for the university (reducing
the demand on campus dormitories by attracting upper
division students who typically did not live on
campus).
Upon examination of these goals, I revisited the
primary components of the program as displayed in
Table 4.1 page 68. In the first column of Table 4.2
on the succeeding page, the program components are
listed again (from Table 4.1). The second column
lists the goals that I believe each individual
component was designed to meet. I matched the primary
components to the goals to provide a framework within
which to assess program efficacy, which was an
integral part of answering the questions posed in this
study.
69


Component 8el[i)
1. Automatic/ Guaranteed Admission to ONC 1) to increase the number of transfer students 2) to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 3) to provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in transfer counseling 5) to assist in budgeting decisions and allocation of resources for the university
2. Automatic Scholar- ships 1) to increase the number of transfer students 4) to raise graduation percentages for minorities
3. Direct On-Line Electronic Connection with ONC Admissions 1) to increase the number of transfer students 2) to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 3) to provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in transfer counseling
4. Partnership Contacts with ONC Bound students 1) to increase the number of transfer students 2) to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 3) to provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in transfer counseling
5. ONC Alumni Mentor Program 1) to increase the number of transfer students 2) to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 3) to provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in transfer counseling
6. VIP Program Linkage 1) to increase the number of transfer students 2} to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 3) to provide transfer counselors with a program that would be easy to explain, and to assist counselors in transfer counseling
7. Academic "Stop-out" Plan 2) to simplify, streamline, and ease the transfer process for students 4) to raise graduation percentages for minorities
Table 4
2. UNC Bound program goals matched
against program components.
70


Conclusions
In my opinion, it appears that the components of
the UNC Bound program are primarily designed to
increase the number of transfer students; second, to
simplify the transfer process; third, to assist
transfer counselors; and fourth, to raise graduation
percentages for minorities. Although it is not
specifically stated as a goal, there is an assumption
that increasing transfer students will raise
graduation rates for non-minorities as well.
Theoretically, if the component criteria meets the
program goals and objectives as outlined by the
program creators, then we might say that the program
is effective. As Chapter Five unfolds, I address the
first question posed in this study. Recall that this
question is "In the perceptions of the transfer
counselors and community college transfer students,
how does coordinated enrollment impact community
college students' transfer process?" The first three
program goals directly relate to this question. In
condensed form, these goals are: to increase the
number of transfer students; to streamline and ease
the transfer process for transfer students; and, to
assist transfer counselors at community college.
71


Therefore, the program components that relate to these
program goals will be re-visited throughout Chapter
Five as I describe the perspectives of the students
and counselors who were interviewed.
The fourth goal which is to raise the graduation
percentages for minorities, and the implied goal,
which is to raise graduation percentages overall, will
be explored in Chapter Six as I answer the second
question, "How does coordinated enrollment, along with
other variables, predict enrollment status of
community college transfer students in a four-year
institution?" The fifth goal which is "to assist in
budgeting decisions and allocation of resources," is
not explored in this study because it does not relate
to the questions posed.
72


CHAPTER 5
THE IMPACT OF COORDINATED ENROLLMENT ON COMMUNITY
COLLEGE STUDENTS
The first question posed in this study was, "In
the perceptions of the transfer counselors and
community college transfer students, how does
coordinated enrollment impact community college
students' transfer process?" In other words, are
community college transfer students influenced to
attend UNC because it offers a coordinated enrollment
program, and does the program ease the transition for
transfer students? In Chapter Four, I described how
UNC Bound program creators desired to develop a
program that would have positive impact on the program
participants and member community colleges. They
envisioned a program that would be easy for transfer
counselors to explain and easy for students to
understand. UNC's goals were to streamline and
simplify the transfer process for community college
students, and provide added incentives that would
attract qualified minority applicants. The program
components were created to meet the program goals.
Presumably, if the program components are properly
73


implemented, program goals will be met. This would
lead us to conclude that the UNC Bound program has a
positive impact on community college students'
transfer process. Alternatively, if program
components are not being properly implemented, we
might conclude that the program has little impact, or
even negative impact, on community college students'
transfer process. To gain additional under standing of
the transfer process, it was necessary to interview
direct transfer students and to compare their transfer
experiences to those of the UNC Bound program.
Keeping the program components and goals in
mind, I interviewed five transfer counselors at
community colleges that feed" students to UNC to
determine if they found the UNC Bound program easier
to explain than other transfer options, and if they
did find it easier, how did this influence the way a
prospective transfer student was counseled.
Additionally, I interviewed 55 community college
transfer students, 25 who participated in UNC Bound
and 29 who transferred to UNC through the established
transfer channels that exist at all state-supported
two-year and four-year schools. As this chapter
unfolds, the program components are matched against
74


the information obtained from the counselors and UNC
Bound students who were interviewed to determine if
the program eased the transition for students.
Finally, the transfer experiences and personal goals
of the direct transfer students are compared to those
of the UNC Bound participants to determine if the
program influences students to continue their
education beyond community college.
The Advising Process
All five transfer counselors said that what
really guided their transfer conversations was the
degree program that the student was interested in.
Two counselors further stated that if the student was
unclear about his/her degree aspirations, then
interest inventory tests or career assessment
inventories would be administered to the student. Two
other counselors said that they had to ask a lot of
questions when students were undecided about future
degree or school choices. Only one counselor proposed
UNC Bound and other UNC transfer options when students
did not ask about specific schools or degree programs.
This counselor's response could be attributed to the
close proximity of her community college to UNC: this
75


counselor assumed that potential transfer students at
her community college wanted to continue their
education in the same geographical location unless
they expressed an interest in going elsewhere.
The counselors stated that when students
specifically asked about transfer to UNC, they found
that the UNC Bound program was extremely easy to
explain to students. They also stated that a
prospective transfer student was more attracted to the
UNC Bound program if the student received counseling
prior to entering his/her final semester at the
community college. The counselors said that when they
could advise freshmen students about transfer options,
they would encourage these students to take the core
courses and maintain high GPAs. If a student was
particularly interested in transferring to UNC, the
counselors would explain to the student how he/she
could receive automatic scholarships and enter UNC as
a junior through the UNC Bound program. One counselor
summed it up by saying, "If they [the students]
mention UNC I talk about UNC Bound. If they are
freshmen and are considering UNC, I encourage them to
work hard to get the scholarships when they get to
UNC."
76


Applause.and.Criticism
The students who were interviewed expressed
strong positive and negative opinions about the
program features and the transfer process. These
opinions, combined with those of the counselors, are
detailed below.
Waiving.Fees and Providing Scholarships. "The
UNC Bound program exhibits a true desire to attract
our [community college] students by waiving
application fees," said one counselor. Two other
counselors also complimented the program for waiving
fees and offering automatic scholarships. As one
counselor put it,
CSU Vital Connections can't really be considered
in the same vein as UNC Bound as they don11
offer waiving of fees and offering scholarships.
They just send a letter to the student. They
don't go to the lengths that UNC does. We even
have a secretary here who mails the student
application to UNC so the student doesn't have
to be bothered.
Four UNC Bound students also complimented the
scholarship component of the program. One female said
that the scholarship helped her make the transition.
Two additional females and one male commented that the
scholarships were the only benefit from participating
77


in the program. "The program didn't really help. It
was just the extra money cause I got scholarships,"
and "the only thing it [UNC Bound] provided me was the
Provost scholarship," summarize these opinions.
Providing automatic scholarships is the second
component of the program. The counselors believe that
this is an attractive component of the program for
prospective transfer students, yet only five students
(19%) mentioned the scholarship option.
Enhanced Advising. All five counselors
mentioned that UNC admissions staff visited the campus
on a regular basis. Two of the counselors mentioned
UNC staff by name and complimented them on their
knowledge and their willingness to help perspective
transfer students, even to the point of completing
admissions paperwork for the students.
Slightly over 46% of the UNC Bound students
(four females, eight males) complimented the UNC Bound
program for assisting them with pre-transfer paperwork
such as applications and transcripts. Additionally,
participating in the program kept them from losing
credits. "It was definitely a convenience thing and
finding out I could go to UNC as a junior was a big
help because I didn't want to take courses I'd taken
78


previously," said one man. Another male said, "They
told you the information you needed to have to
transfer. ... It was great to walk, right in and be
accepted as a student. It was very easy.11 A female
said, "RRCC did all the paperwork which was nice and
as soon as I finished my classes, they took care of
the transcripts (sending them to UNC)." Three females
and three males commended the UNC staff for providing
advice on courses to take at the community college,
thus saving them time and money upon transfer to UNC:
Financially, you don't loose credits. . They
[UNC] were good about telling me about classes I
needed to take. I didn't waste a lot of time
taking classes that I didn't need or wouldn't
transfer.
Almost 31% (eight respondents) of the UNC Bound
students were less satisfied with the advising
process. Five students believed that the transition
was difficult because of the poor advising they
received, particularly after transfer. Three students
who had received scholarships through their
participation in UNC Bound and consequently lost those
scholarships after their first semester blamed the
loss on inadequate understanding of the new
environment which caused their GPAs to decrease.
These three students believed that the GPA decrease
I
79


could have been avoided had they received better
advising and more assistance. Even though the UNC
Bound program literature states that the GPA will be
re-computed after the first semester at UNC, the
students seemed unaware or had forgotten this fact.
These students also felt that the GPA they had
transferred with should have been combined with the
GPA earned at UNC. Instead, these students were
starting with a completely new GPA as if they were
freshman. One student who had transferred with a 4.0
was particularly vehement around this issue because
after the first semester at UNC she had a 2.75 GPA.
She claimed that if her first semester GPA had been
combined with her transfer GPA, she would have had a
3.0 GPA which would have allowed her to keep the
scholarship:
I think they need to give you a semester to get
acclimated because my GPA went down that first
semester and then I lost the scholarship and
that wasn't fair I think. It was a new
experience and even though I was a junior, I
didn't feel like one of the students who had
been there since being a freshman. It made me
mad when I lost the scholarship and I almost
left except I felt like I had to stay there
because another school might not accept my
credits.
Component six of the UNC Bound program states
that member students will be identified and aided in
80


the guidance process, presumably by UNC staff. While
46% (12) of the UNC Bound students who were
interviewed perceived that they received adequate
advising, particularly before transfer, 30.7% (8) were
unhappy with the post transfer advising.
Transfer Guides. The counselors stressed that
one of the most valuable tools to assist in transfer
was up-to-date transfer guides. One counselor
explained that the core courses are guaranteed to
transfer but that does not mean that these courses
meet the requirements of all majors. Oftentimes, the
core courses are accepted as electives only. The
counselors believed that up-to-date transfer guides
were imperative for defining what courses a transfer
student would need to take at UNC or any four-year
school. As one counselor stated,
. .there are certain programs that work real
well for an associate degree or for the core,
but then there are other programs that don't
work so well, and that's where it becomes a real
pain in the neck because you've got to figure
out what program the student is transferring to
and what their area of emphasis is in order to
advise them on what classes are best for them to
take within the core and beyond the core to
complete an associate degree. Because if the
student doesn't take the correct one hundred and
two hundred level pre-requisites then they are
not eligible to get into those three hundred and
four hundred level classes.
81


Three students agreed that transfer guides were
an integral part of transfer and that the UNC Bound
information and advising processes did not meet the
needs of the non-traditional student. One of these
students, who considered herself non-traditional,
complained of difficulty transferring credits and
inadequate transfer guides:
I was working full-time [while at the community
college] and I needed help help me figure out
the course work I needed, help me get enrolled.
They [UNC] didn't provided any of that. I
didn't get a transfer guide with UNC Bound for
some of the classes. ... I didn't know which
classes I could start taking in a series of
classes I had to take because I didn't know
where they transferred exactly. . Some of
the things I thought were in one area were in a
completely different area when they transferred
to UNC. Like Anthropology transferred in as
'World something or other' not Anthropology.
It is possible that component three, which
involves on-line electronic communication with UNC,
would alleviate the problems encountered with transfer
guides. The on-line transfer data is current and up-
to-date. None of the counselors and students spoke
about this component, so it is unclear whether they
access the on-line data or encourage prospective
transfer students to access it.
Alumni Mentoring. The five counselors agreed
that the UNC Bound program as designed, was the most
82


comprehensive coordinated enrollment program of its
type. One of the areas where the program appeared to
be weak or not implemented was alumni mentoring.
Three counselors said that the mentoring part of the
program needed to be strengthened. The counselors
believed that students would benefit from having a
contact/mentor at the community college who had
attended UNC. The mentor would be an informative
source for the student to learn about UNC. The
mentors would help the student find out how to obtain
adequate counseling after transfer, where to go on
campus for additional help, and how to read and
interpret the UNC catalog.
The counselors said that while mentors had often
been identified, these individuals did not have a
clear concept of what their roles were. Counselors
believed that UNC representatives needed to meet with
the mentors on a regular basis and discuss changes
that might be occurring at UNC. Additionally, the
counselors believed that mentors, once identified and
"enlisted," should be required to provide status
reports on the students they were mentoring. Not one
interviewed student mentioned alumni mentors. Alumni
mentoring is the fifth component of the program. The
83


counselors believe that this component is poorly-
implemented and the lack of commentary by the
interviewed students appears to support this opinion.
Bridge Programs. One counselor also suggested
that there should be a "bridge program" for transfer
students to become assimilated to the four-year campus
environment:
... a bridge program perhaps where the
(prospective transfer) student goes to the
(four-year) campus for a week and really gets to
know the institution. Maybe if he's a math
student, he goes to some math classes. Make it
free or give the student some incentive.
In a bridge program, the student would attend
various programs designed to inform him/her about UNC
services and general campus life. In addition, the
student would visit classes that he/she would be
taking in a succeeding semester. Another counselor
suggested that such a program be mandatory prior to
accepting the student for transfer. Evidence suggests
that bridge programs would be beneficial to students
as 42.3% (11) of the UNC Bound students felt that the
advising and assistance they received before or after
transfer was inadequate or poor.
This bridge program idea is somewhat similar to
components four and six, which entails UNC
representatives establishing partnership contacts with
84


all UNC Bound students, guiding them through the
admissions process, and assisting them with financial
aid applications. Again, the data obtained from the
student interviewees suggests that almost 50% of them
need additional assistance and information from UNC
staff.
The Impact of UNC Bound on Students
Students who were interviewed in this study were
asked a number of questions designed to clarify if the
program impacted their decision to continue their
education beyond the community college. The
succeeding paragraphs detail the students' responses.
UNC Bound Program Influenced.Students to Enroll
Fifty percent (11 females, 2 males) claimed that
the UNC Bound program either impacted their decision
to continue their education beyond community college
or to enroll at UNC. "I already knew I wanted to go
to UNC because I wanted to teach. . So it was just
better financially to go when I could get guaranteed
scholarships," said one young woman. A minority male
said,
85


It was definitely a convenience thing [the UNC
Bound program] and finding out I could go as a
junior was a big factor 'cause I didn't want to
take courses I'd taken previously. But I knew I
was going to get a degree.
A minority female echoed these sentiments:
It definitely encouraged me to continue my
education, but I would have done it no matter
what. I mean, it was a definite help. The
scholarships were a great help. I went through
school mostly on grants and scholarships because
I had good grades. I paid for more of it that
way....
Another female student stated that she would have
continued to pursue four-year degree, but not
necessarily at UNC:
No, but it [the UNC Bound program] did have an
impact on me going there [to UNC] to continue my
education. I looked at CU Denver first 'cause
that's where I was first going to go and I
wasn' t real thrilled with the requirements such
as I had to take three semesters of foreign
language and I couldn' t see why that was a
requirement and I looked at Metro and didn't
particularly like their program. I thought I
was stuck with one of the two. Then I saw a
presentation about UNC and thought it sounded
pretty good and I liked the idea of this UNC
Bound program and the fact that they did a
little scholarship there automatically.
And finally, a male student said,
That's [the UNC Bound program] the reason I went
'cause UNC was accepting my entire credits and
I'd be a junior when I started. CSU only
offered me 29 out of my 72 credits and I would
have basically been a freshman at CSU again.
86


UNC Bound Program Had No Impact
When program participants were asked if the
program impacted their decision to continue their
education beyond community college, 50% (eight
females, five males) said that the program had no
impact. Repeated themes were the necessity to
complete a four-year degree to be competitive in the
job market:
After I went to Aims, I worked and I was making
$4.25 an hour and I realized that there was much
more out there I wanted to do, and I wanted to
get more than an AA. You know, it's hard to get
a full-time job with benefits unless you have a
bachelors degree, and it's even really hard
with that. . .
A female student commented:
I always wanted to go to college. . I really
got serious when I was 25 and I decided that
even though I had a lot of good solid work
experience behind me, I was never going to move
up any higher unless I had that piece of paper
[a baccalaureate].
Another young women stated that the degree program
attracted her to UNC:
The reason I went to UNC was because they had a
Kinesiology program and I wasn't at all
interested in going to Boulder 'cause the campus
is so big and I wanted a smaller school. The
[Kinesiology] program really brought me to UNC.
87


Transfer Experiences of Direct Transfer Students
For purposes of comparison, it was also
necessary to ask direct transfer students about their
transfer experiences, what worked and what didn't
work. The results were not what I expected: overall,
direct transfer students appeared to be much more
satisfied with the transfer process than the UNC Bound
participants. The comments of the direct transfer
students were illuminating.
Nineteen Students.Found Transfer Easy
Direct transfer students are those students who
transferred to UNC through the regular transfer paths
that exist between all state supported two-year and
four-year schools. These students paid application
fees to UNC and were not offered automatic
scholarships and enhanced advising. Of the 29 direct
transfer students interviewed, 65.5% (12 females, 7
males) felt that the overall transition was easy.
Nine students in this group declared that the transfer
guides were clear and helpful. Four of the 19
students asserted that they received good assistance
from faculty or advisors at UNC. One female stated.
88


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