Discovering Sociology: Education & Society

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    • 00:03

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS: One of the most interesting factsabout education is how rapidly it changes over time.

    • 00:09

      DAINA S. EGLITIS: What are trends in college completiontoday?Many US students go to college.About 70%, in fact, go on to some formof higher education within two years of completinghigh school.But many leave college without completing a degree.In fact, a 2011 study called Pathways to Prosperityfound that only about 56% of students

    • 00:31

      DAINA S. EGLITIS [continued]: who began higher education complete a bachelor'sdegree within six years.

    • 00:36

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS: Leaving collegewithout completing the degree is, of course, a verypersonal decision and is linked to the particular circumstancesof a given student.It is clear that in this sense leaving collegeis the result of a private trouble.At the same time, however, the data

    • 00:57

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS [continued]: show that since large numbers of studentsare leaving college before completing the degree,it also is a public issue-- one whichaffects many thousands of students each yearand has an effect on the US economy, whichneeds skilled workers with higher education.

    • 01:19

      DAINA S. EGLITIS: So why are so many studentsstarting higher education and leaving before completing it?Research points to a few important factors.Take a few moments before we beginto think about possible sociological rootsof the phenomenon.In this video, we briefly discuss two points.

    • 01:40

      DAINA S. EGLITIS [continued]: The book chapter elaborates the topic more fully.

    • 01:44

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS: One key factoris the economic challenge of financing a college education.While a college degree confers important economic benefits,in the book we talk about the growing gapbetween those with a high school degreeand those with a college degree.

    • 02:05

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS [continued]: It can also be very costly.Between 1980 and 2010, the average costof a college degree tripled.Studies show that the cost can be prohibitive,particularly for students from lower income households.So some students leave college without a degree,

    • 02:26

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS [continued]: because they cannot bear the financial costs of completion.

    • 02:30

      DAINA S. EGLITIS: Studies also cite the factorof educational preparedness.This factor is a complicated one.One particular aspect of it, however, is the factthat students who are not well-prepared academically,may be required by their collegesto completely remedial courses in orderto attain an appropriate level of readiness.

    • 02:51

      DAINA S. EGLITIS [continued]: But these courses may not confer college credit.As such, these courses can both addto the cost of higher education and lengthen the timeto degree.This can make completion less likely as well.

    • 03:04

      WILLIAM J. CHAMBLISS: In this chapter,we examine this issue further.We also look at the important issue of racial segregationin US public schooling, the rising incomegap between high school and college graduates,and an activity in which many collegestudents today engage-- off-campus internships.

Discovering Sociology: Education & Society

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Abstract

Professors William Chambliss and Daina Eglitis discuss trends in college completion and possible sociological explanations for those trends.

Discovering Sociology: Education & Society

Professors William Chambliss and Daina Eglitis discuss trends in college completion and possible sociological explanations for those trends.

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