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Barriers to graduation: an examination of first-generation college students

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dc.contributor.author Smith, Sarah M.
dc.date.accessioned 2018-05-22T23:26:49Z
dc.date.available 2018-05-22T23:26:49Z
dc.date.issued 2012-08
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11122/8419
dc.description Thesis (M.A.) University of Alaska Fairbanks, 2012 en_US
dc.description.abstract The college experience of first- generation college students is unique in comparison to their peers. Many students do not have the support from their family and require help in the navigation of college life. Student Support Services, a federally funded TRIO program helps students successfully graduate with a bachelor's degree. Qualitative interviews were conducted on ten undergraduate students at UAF who were labeled as first-generation college students. All ten students were active participants in Student Support Services at the University of Alaska Fairbanks during the time of the interview. A thematic analysis produced six emergent themes. It was found that students utilized communicative strategies based on Orbe's co-cultural communication theory. First-generation college students, a non-dominant part of society, tried to negotiate through the University system, the dominant section of society. Through this negotiation, a co-cultural group was formed. en_US
dc.description.tableofcontents 1. Introduction -- 1.1. Rationale for study -- 2. Literature review -- 2.1. First generation students -- 2.2. Supporting university students -- 2.2.1. Student support services -- 2.2.2. Advising programs -- 2.3. Theoretical framework -- 2.3.1. Standpoint theory -- 2.3.2. Co-cultural communication theory -- 2.4. Research questions -- 3. Methodology -- 3.1. Theoretical framework -- 3.2. Theoretical perspectives -- 3.3. Research methodology -- 3.4. Methods -- 3.4.1. Objectivity and researcher as instrument -- 3.4.2. Validity -- 3.4.3. Reliability -- 3.4.4. Lived experience and generation of knowledge -- 3.5. Procedures -- 3.6. Participants -- 3.7. Analysis -- 4. Results -- 4.1. Nicole's conversational interview -- 4.2. Jamie's conversational interview --4.3. Carolyn's conversational interview -- 4.4. Robert's conversational interview -- 4.5. Brian's conversational interview -- 4.6. Elizabeth's conversational interview -- 4.7. Alex's conversational interview -- 4.8. Emily's conversational interview -- 4.9. Samantha's conversational interview -- 4.10. Mandi's conversational interview -- 5. Analysis & discussion -- 5.1. I should be at home tucking in my kids -- 5.1.1. Financial -- 5.1.2. Family -- 5.2. "First generation? We're all alone. Nobody likes us."-Alex -- 5.2.1. First generation -- 5.2.2. Non-traditional students -- 5.2.3. Low self-confidence -- 5.3. "There's this part that your family, they just never understood."-Mandi -- 5.3.1. Disconnect -- 5.3.2. Lack of Support -- 5.4. I' think I'll just change my major -- 5.4.1. Dominant is disconnected -- 5.4.2. Dominant don't care -- 5.5. Thanks for making an effort -- 5.5.1. Advisors -- 5.5.2. Teachers -- 5.5.3. I will help my community -- 5.6. "I probably would've given up because I was already in the mindset ... to fail."-Nicole -- 5.7. Summary and suggestions for further research -- Works cited. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.subject First-generation college students en_US
dc.subject Alaska en_US
dc.subject Fairbanks en_US
dc.subject Case studies en_US
dc.title Barriers to graduation: an examination of first-generation college students en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.type.degree ma en_US
dc.identifier.department Department of Communication en_US


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