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Theoretical Perspectives on Student Success: Understanding the Contributions of the Disciplines: ASHE Higher Education Report, Volume 34, Number 1

ISBN: 978-0-470-41078-3
112 pages
July 2008, Jossey-Bass
Theoretical Perspectives on Student Success: Understanding the Contributions of the Disciplines: ASHE Higher Education Report, Volume 34, Number 1 (0470410787) cover image

Description

Drawing on a review of theory, methods, and the substantive focus of student success research in four disciplines, this report proposes a conceptual model to guide policymakers, practitioners, and researchers in their efforts to close well-documented gaps in student success. The model proposes that student success is determined by four layers of context: the students' internal context, the family context, the school context, and the broader social, economic, and policy context.

The model also assumes that

  1. student success is a longitudinal process
  2. multiple theoretical approaches inform understanding of student success
  3. student success is shaped by multiple levels of context
  4. the relative contribution of different disciplinary and area perspectives to understanding student success varies
  5. multiple methodological approaches contribute to knowledge of student success
  6. student success processes vary across groups.

The monograph offers several implications of the model for policymakers and practitioners as well as researchers.

This is the first issue in the 34th volume of the Jossey-Bass series ASHE Higher Education Report. Each monograph in the series is the definitive analysis of a tough higher education problem, based on thorough research of pertinent literature and institutional experiences. Topics are identified by a national survey. Noted practitioners and scholars are then commissioned to write the reports, with experts providing critical reviews of each manuscript before publication.

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Author Information

Laura W. Perna is associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education.

Scott L. Thomas is professor at the Claremont Graduate University School of Educational Studies.

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