U.S College Dropout Rate

U.S College Dropout Rate







U.S College Dropout Rate

One of largest and fastest issues noted in America is noted by the level of college dropouts that mostly comprises of young adults (Leonhardt, 2005). A majority of college dropouts whether they are in the situation willingly or unwillingly usually promise themselves that they will get back to school after some time. Unfortunately, most of them never keep this promise. The fast American life acts as a notable constraint, amongst others like financial issues. With these challenges, the dropouts give up the dream in the long-term. This study will employ quantitative and qualitative methods to indicate the magnitude of the problem in the nation.

Quantitative Method

In the US, students who get into two-year community colleges have a twelve percent rate of graduation. Those in the four-year schemes in public state colleges have a thirty percent rate of graduation while those in four-year private colleges have a fifty-six percent graduation rate. Moreover, not all of the students who are rated as graduates actually earn their degree certificates or associate degrees. Most goals set by a city like Boston to get a fifty percent graduation rate are never accomplished. Although there is up to seventy-seven high school graduation rate in most cities, the colleges are not fairing well (BWIB, 2011). It is even harder to achieve the improvements during the present economic deepening.

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Method

Advantages are noted in that the sample collected can be used to generalize a bigger population. There is anonymity as it is not specific on the schools being researched on, but rather generalizes on Boston. The information is reliable since it has not been collected on one specific school or two but rather from different schools in the same region (Creswell, 2009). The disadvantages of this method are that there might be a likeliness of characteristic sharing since the information has been retrieved from the same region. Again, the approach is a costly method because of the diversity involved in collecting the information from the different schools (Creswell, 2009).

Qualitative Method

            Most students do not dropout without tangible rationales. The action has a relationship with an external force by the fact that there is a relationship between college dropout, idiosyncratic risk and household wealth. Poorer students are more vulnerable to dropping out of college more than the wealthier students are. Uncertainty is also a major contributor in college dropout; a student would rather earn good money that he/she gets during summer for a longer time than wait for a huge amount they are not sure of getting in the future.

Students from poor families have a dropout rate 65.6 percent as compared to those in the rich families who range at 26.96 percent (Ozdagli, & Trachter, 2011). Additionally, students in poor families drop out at an earlier stage as compared to the students in rich families. Students in rich families stay in school for an average duration of 3.94 years while those in the poor families stay an average of 2.78 years (Ozdagli & Trachter, 2011). Although college education is important, most students, especially from the poor families, consider it as a risky investment. Most dropouts feel that there is uncertainty in investing in college education, which is highly uninsurable.

Advantages and Disadvantages of the method

One advantage of this method is that it analyzes a topic in detail. It is also cheaper than the quantitative method. This is because the participants recruited are not as many as those in the quantitative method are. It is also more flexible in terms of timing and locations (Creswell, 2009). A notable demerit is that one cannot generalize the findings in this type of method. This is because the information collected is limited. Again, the audience involved cannot be quantified as who answered and who did not (Creswell, 2009).

Quantitative and Qualitative

            Both methods help one to gain a detailed knowledge of the researched topic. However, the quantitative method aids in the making of a more concrete general conclusion than the qualitative method. On the other hand, qualitative methods are detailed and information is covered in an exhaustively manner. Both methods have enabled me to gain detailed statistics, and in-depth information that has aided the audience in acquisition of the various covered aspects.



Boston’s Workforce Investment Board, (2011). Dropout Research. Boston, MA, Boston Private Industry Council.

Creswell, J. W. (2009). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Sage Publications.

Leonhardt. D, (May 24, 2005). The College Dropout Boom. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/24/national/class/EDUCATION-FINAL.html

Ozdagli, A. K. & Trachter N. (July 18, 2011). On the Distribution of College Dropouts: Household Wealth and Uninsurable Idiosyncratic Risk. Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. No. 11-8.


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