Friday, June 19, 2015

Rural Indiana students are less likely than urban peers to enroll in 4-year and selective colleges

Rural Indiana high school graduates are just as likely as their urban peers to attend college but are more likely than their urban counterparts to attend a two-year school and less likely to attend a very selective four-year school, says a study by the American Institutes for Research and the Midwest Rural Research Alliance. Nationally, rural students are less likely than urban counterparts to enroll in college.

The study, which looked at Indiana high school graduates from 2010, found that 62.1 percent of rural students enrolled in college, compared to 60.6 percent of non-rural students. But 30.8 percent of rural students enrolled in a two-year school, compared to 25.4 percent of non-rural students. Also, 22.6 percent of rural students enrolled in a four-year school, compared to 27.7 percent of non-rural students.

Although participation in Advanced Placement classes was similar, with 27.2 percent of rural high school students taking AP classes and 28.2 percent of non-rural high school students taking those classes, "about 28 percent of rural graduates enrolled in a college that was less selective than they were qualified for, compared to about 24 percent of nonrural students," Jackie Mader reports for Education Week. Researchers wrote, "The greater likelihood of undermatching among rural graduates may be explained partly by the information available to them and by the culture of their high schools," and rural students may be "unaware of the opportunities their aca­demic qualifications may afford them."

The study says another theory is that the "farther rural graduates’ high schools were from colleges, the more likely graduates were to enroll in a two-year college or to undermatch with a college."

No comments: