Contrary to a commonly-held belief that low-income students are more likely to struggle in a four-year institution, new data indicates students from low-income households are, in fact, likely to thrive in four-year institutions, according to a new survey.

Higher education institutions are relying on predictive analysis to make decisions about admission and resource allocation, but that process could perpetuate the under-representation of minority and low-income students, according to a survey released by vibeffect at EDUCAUSE.

The comprehensive survey includes data from students in 5,000 households, spans 1,000 institutions and covers 260 variables. Four comparison groups are used for analysis:

  • Low-income high-thrivers (LI-HT) with household income below $35,000
  • High-income high-thrivers (HI-HT) with household income of $150,000 or higher
  • Low-income- all other (LI-AO)
  • All other high-thrivers (AO-HT)

It reveals that students from low-income households ($35,000 household income and below) have an equal probability of earning a “high-thriving” designation on all dimensions of thriving, and often are equally represented in the highest-thriving group.

(Next page: What the results reveal about supporting low-income students)

About the Author:

Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. When she isn't wrangling her two children, Laura enjoys running, photography, home improvement, and rooting for the Terps. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura


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