778 students. Of that 778 students, 746 (96%) were female students and 188 (24%) were
Hispanic. The entire freshman class who attended freshman orientation in the summer of 2008
served as the sample population. These students voluntarily participated in both portions of the
survey instrument. From this population, the sub-group of first-time-in-college Hispanic female
students were selected as the population for analysis in this study.
This study utilized data from two, two-part Likert-type instruments, the Freshman
Experience Survey (FES) Parts I and II. This survey was created by Nicholas (1990) for a study
conducted in 1989 to examine college choice and students' expectations of and experiences in
their first year of college. The reliability and validity of these instruments were established in
prior research (Nicholas, 1990) and used in at least two other studies (Blum, 1993; Smith, 1995).
Part I of the FES, distributed during the summer of 2008, prior to the students' freshman
year, included items regarding college choice and expectations that the students had about their
first year in college. Part II of the FES was distributed during the 10th week of the 2008 fall
semester and used to determine if the students' expectations of their first year were being met or
if there was a gap between their earlier expectations and the realities of their early college
experience. The study then assessed (1) the disparities, where present, between their pre-college
expectations and their actual first semester experiences and (2) the extent to which these
disparities correlated with early attrition. The surveys were untimed and typically required
approximately 15 minutes for the students to complete. See Appendices A and B for examples
of the FES Part I and II.
By utilizing a pre and post survey (surveys both before and after the students' initial
college experience), this study attempted to determine if certain factors related to pre-college
Speed, Heather Faye. Early Predictors of Early Freshman Year Attrition in Female Hispanic Students. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103396/. Accessed October 30, 2014.