Banking on the Future: Student Academic Performance, Retention, Graduation, and Instructor Type
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Students experience challenges with persistence, retention, graduation, and overall academic success in colleges and universities, particularly when courses are taught by adjunct instructors. Using a sample of 21,274 student results in three different general education disciplines from 2010 to 2019, the authors found that there was a disparity between adjunct and full-time faculty members in those key outcomes. The purpose of this study is to analyze data about student persistence, retention, and academic skills and its relationships with type of instructor (adjunct or non-adjunct) to consider the means by which the results may help to respond effectively to negative indicators in those areas. In addition to including adjunct instructors in professional development and student engagement activities on campuses, strategically hiring full-time faculty may result in gains that offset the higher financial outlay for those instructors.
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