Date of Conferral







Alan Seidman


Nontraditional students have become the majority on community college campuses; however, a national report showed that 46.2% of nontraditional students were no longer enrolled after two years. Nontraditional students have competing life roles that affect their attrition rates as well as their academic performance. The purpose of this quantitative study was to understand the relationship between the number of roles and the academic achievement and persistence of nontraditional community college students. The roles identified were student enrollment status (full-time or part-time), spousal roles, parental roles, and employment status (full-time or part-time). Goode's theory of role strain was used as the theoretical framework to guide this study on nontraditional community college students. Additionally, the existence of statistical significance was determined between the number of different roles and academic achievement, measured by grade point average, and persistence, measured by enrollment through two consecutive terms for 250 participants. Descriptive statistics showed that being employed full-time was the most common role (f=171) among nontraditional community college students. Beta regression showed there was no statistical significance (p = 0.705) between the number of roles and grade point average. Logistic regression showed that the relationship between the number of roles and persistence was statistically significant (p -?¤ 0.0001). This study can help community college faculty and staff gain knowledge on the needs of nontraditional students. Positive social change can be promoted by creating or extending resources for these students to help them overcome the barriers that may hinder their academic achievement and persistence through school.