This study examined the impact of a set of theoretically-derived predictor variables on the persistence and transfer of Hispanic
community college students. Early models of student persistence have been validated primarily among 4-year college students.
While the constructs have been well-established, the relationships of those relevant factors remain unexamined among community
college transfer students, and specifically, among Hispanic students enrolled in developmental coursework and planning to
transfer from a community college to a 4-year institution. Logistic regression analysis was used to test the hypothesized
conceptual framework on an existing set of quantitative persistence data drawn from a national sample of Hispanic students.
Non-Developmental (Year 2) versus Non-Developmental
Factor Impacting Student
Year 2Year 3
High school math courses
Number of hours worked
Financial aid received
Three Major Conclusions
There are a common set of factors that previously have
been found to impact measures of success for students
enrolled at four-year institutions that are substantiated
for Hispanic developmental and non
for Hispanic developmental and non
community college students.
Validation of a theoretical/conceptual model of student
success for Hispanic students.
Three Major Conclusions
Findings support the influence of environmental pull-
factors as important for both developmental and non-
The influences of the educational attainment of
The influences of the educational attainment of
A strong financial support so that students can
attend college full-time without having to work
Advantages of a strong high school academic
Three Major Conclusions
A common set of factors were more influential early on for
developmental students while they were felt by non-
developmental students throughout their enrollment in
Practices and interventions focused early on for remedial
students will payoff even if those factors are lacking in later
Benefits provided in earlier semesters will still motivate and
encourage developmental students to remain enrolled in
college until their educational aspirations are reached
Gloria Crisp, Assistant Professor
The University of Texas at San Antonio
Amaury Nora, Professor and Director
University of Houston
A copy of the paper can be downloaded at:
... Ultimately, our findings suggest that CCEL students are more likely to engage in academic discourse, internalize teachers' pedagogical offerings, and recognize institutional supports than non-CCELs. Specifically, CCEL students report experiencing less support from either family or friends regarding their postsecondary involvement, a potential cause for concern relative to prior postsecondary attainment research (e.g., Crisp and Nora 2010). Additionally, in line with research in the K-12 sector, CCEL students appear to benefit more from both academic engagement (Aguirre-Muñoz and Pantoya 2016; Choi 2013) and instruction that incorporates critical thinking skills (Calderon and Slakk 2018) than their non-CCEL peers. ...
... CCEL students reported relatively low levels of support for their educational aspirations outside of the community college setting. While friend support did appear to bolster CCEL students' academic aspirations, family support did not, despite prior research suggesting its potential (e.g., Crisp and Nora 2010). However, we suggest a possible a mismatch in CCEL students' understanding of college-going and that of their parents who-for the most part-are not only foreign-born but also bring a non-U.S. ...
Researchers have long struggled to accurately identify the needs of English learner (EL) students and the factors that facilitate their postsecondary success. Although prior research suggests that EL students disproportionately select into community colleges, there is a dearth research that examines transfer to four-year schools among community college English learner (CCEL) students. In this study, we examined whether and to what extent community college students’ linguistic status shapes the relationship between engagement and intent to transfer to a four-year institution. Using data from the Community College Survey of Student Engagement, we used logistic regression to examine how, if at all, the relationships between the multiple forms of student engagement and intent to transfer might differ by linguistic status, net of various student and school-level controls. Ultimately, our findings suggest that students’ returns to engagement do differ by linguistic status, with CCEL students experiencing the greatest gains relative to their intent to transfer. Not only are CCEL students are more likely to engage in academic discourse, internalize teachers’ pedagogical offerings, and recognize institutional supports than their non-CCEL peers, but they appear to derive greater benefits from both academic engagement and instruction in the use critical thinking skills than their non-CCEL peers. We conclude with recommendations for educators, policymakers, and researchers seeking to improve CCEL students’ educational attainment and engagement.
... As the nation prepares for a nearly 29% increase in the Latina/o/x 1 population by the year 2060 (U.S. Census Bureau, 2017), educators must consider the implications of this growth, particularly the enrollment of Latina/ o/x students in higher education (Crisp & Nora, 2010). According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), approximately 68.9% of Latina/o high school completers were enrolled in some form of higher education; this included approximately 46% enrolling at 2-year institutions (Krogstad & Fry, 2015). ...
... In fact, Jain, Herrera, Bernal, and Solorzano (2011) urged 4-year institutions to foster a transfer receptive culture, which they define as an institutional commitment to ensure that transfer students are equipped with the knowledge and resources to successfully earn a baccalaureate degree. Prior studies have documented that students successfully experience the transfer process if they have a support network, have a transfer agent, and their post-secondary institutions assists with the transfer process (Bensimon & Dowd, 2009;Crisp & Nora, 2010;Nuñez & Elizondo, 2013;Starobin & Laanan, 2005). Moreover, the success of Latino transfer students can depend on the viability of transferring to a new university (Rivas, Perez, Alvarez, & Solorzano, 2007). ...
This chapter provides insights on the community college transfer experiences of Latino men. In particular, we conceptualize how Latino men navigate different spaces (intellectual, emotional, geographical) with the support of family members.
... Demographic characteristics of the sample were also compared with institutional data reported for Fall 2012. The sample contained a higher number of African American and Hispanic students relative to the general population of students, but research has suggested that historically marginalized and underrepresented students in college are often overrepresented in remedial courses (Crisp & Nora, 2010;Melguizo et al., 2008). ...
... A number of demographic and performance measures were included in the study to help predict the likelihood that a student would immediately enroll in a college-level mathematics course. Demographic characteristics included age, ethnicity, gender, and Pell eligibility given their relevance to remedial course placement in the literature (Crisp & Nora, 2010;Kolajo, 2004;Melguizo et al., 2008;Wolfle & Williams, 2014). To ensure sample sizes for race and ethnicity were sufficiently large enough for meaningful comparison, data were collapsed into four categories (White, n ¼ 521; Black/African American, n ¼ 371; Hispanic, n ¼ 271; other, n ¼ 81). ...
Mathematics has been a barrier for degree attainment. Research has focused on mathematics generally and not the transition from remedial to college-level coursework. This study examined the effects of delaying enrollment in college-level mathematics on student success. Propensity score matching minimized bias between immediate and delayed enrollment in a college-level course. Our findings indicated that delaying enrollment in a college-level course changed the likelihood a university retained first-time remedial mathematics students after Years 1 and 2. No evidence was found to suggest remedial students’ decision to delay enrollment in a college-level course affected undergraduate grade point average or earning a passing grade in college-level mathematics. Results of course performance were biased toward those who attempted a college-level mathematics course; 25.7% of the matched sample who completed their remedial courses never enrolled in a college-level mathematics course, and most of those departed early. Our results support the importance of early completion of mathematics.
... A large number of studies have aimed to tackle the controversy around developmental in terms of whether it helped community college students better prepare for college-level courses and obtain a postsecondary degree (Bettinger and Long 2009;Boatman and Long 2010). Specifically, Crisp and Nora (2010) found that placement and enrollment in at least one developmental course had a positive impact on persistence and transfer decisions for Latino community college students until the end of their second year in college. Bahr (2012) stated that developmental education outcomes were impacted by students' attempting, delaying, and passing a certain developmental course. ...
Community college near-completion students are community college starters who have accumulated a considerable number of credits but left college without any postsecondary educational credential. This quantitative study examined a nationally representative sample and intended to reveal significant predictors of becoming a community college near-completion student. We adopted Bean and Metzner’s (1985) framework to focus on characteristics of nontraditional college students and Bahr’s (2013) approach to emphasize students’ course-taking patterns. We conducted a latent class analysis to explore students’ course-taking patterns and examined whether different course-taking patterns would predict the likelihood of being a near-completion student using a logistic regression model. Findings indicated the significant role of course-taking patterns in predicting the likelihood of being a community college near completion student. Community college students who have taken and passed a large number of remedial courses are more likely to leave college without a credential. Additional interaction terms in the regression model further revealed the nuances in terms of the influences of course-taking patterns among various student sub-groups. Implications for practice and future research are discussed.
... The social and cultural capital of Hispanic college students relevant to college and how these factors impact student success have been a point of interest in higher education (Crisp & Nora, 2010;Sandoval-Lucero, Maes, & Klingsmith, 2014;Wells, 2008;Zambrana, & Zoppi, 2002). Because of this and references made by informants in the qualitative portion of the study, a series of queries were included in the 2018 and 2019 student surveys that sought to understand the knowledge base in the student's family of origin regarding college processes and patterns and the level of assistance the student received with a variety of college-going tasks. ...
Survey data were gathered from college and university faculty, staff, and administrators at Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) regarding Hispanic culture and Hispanic students as part of an NSF-funded investigation that focused on the characteristics and programming of HSIs as well as the background and experiences of their students. Two surveys of students were also conducted. A minimum of 44 HSIs in Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado were represented in the 393 usable responses gathered from faculty, staff, and administrators. Fourteen HSIs in New Mexico and Texas were represented in student survey data gathered in 2018 and three in north Texas in a survey completed in 2019. Responses from 213 Hispanic students were isolated from the 2018 student survey and 307 from the 2019 data. This material was used to verify and expand on the findings from the survey of faculty, staff, and administrators. A consistent and strong difference of opinion was found between Hispanic faculty, staff, and administrators at the HSIs and their non-Hispanic peers regarding information available to higher education professionals about Hispanic culture, the elements of Hispanic culture, and the characteristics and background of Hispanic students. Survey responses of Hispanic students confirmed, at many points, that the perspective of the Hispanic faculty, staff, and administrators was accurate. It appears, based on this information, that the non-Hispanic employees at the HSIs were less well informed about Hispanic culture and a major portion of their student population than would be desirable. The findings, while from the south-central United States, can inform multiple academic and support services at Hispanic-Serving Institutions and other colleges and universities as they include information about how Hispanic culture is understood by Hispanics, detail gaps in competence regarding Hispanic culture among faculty, staff, and administrators at HSIs, and describe characteristics and the cultural orientation of Hispanic students attending the HSIs in the sample.
... Though access to postsecondary institutions is expanding across ethnoracial groups, inequality persists across these groups in terms of postsecondary destinations (Massey et al., 2003;Posselt et al., 2012) and postsecondary attainment rates (Crisp & Nora, 2010). For example, Latinx 1 youth are much more likely to attend two-year colleges (Kurlaender, 2006) and, when attending four-year colleges, have the lowest attainment rates of any ethnoracial group (Krogstad, 2016). ...
As postsecondary schooling expands, stratification in attainment persists along ethnoracial lines. We build on current research investigating ethnoracial differences in the transition to college by interrogating parents’ preference for their child’s residence during college. We extend research in two ways. First, we predict whether parents’ live-at-home preference is associated with behavior at multiple points in the college-going pipeline. Second, we investigate whether the effect of parents’ live-at-home preference differs by ethnoracial group. Results suggest that students whose parents prefer that they live at home are less likely to apply to four-year universities, less likely to attend four-year universities, less likely to enroll full-time among those who are attending four-year universities, and more likely to live with their parents or elsewhere off campus during college. Results also suggest that parents’ live-at-home preference has less of an impact on Latinx students’ likelihood of applying to and attending four-year universities than white students.
... Benítez (1998) noted that student completion rates among Latinx students are higher at HSIs than the completion rates of Latinx students at non-HSIs. As Latinx students entered the third year of college, attending an HSI was positively related to their persistence and completion (Crisp & Nora, 2010). However, more recent studies have found that despite promising persistence rates and college credits earned by Latinx students, their initial academic success does not necessarily translate to college completion at HSIs (Contreras & Contreras, 2015). ...
Over the years, more colleges and universities have gained the designation of Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs) and emerging Hispanic-serving institutions (EHSIs). The Hispanic-serving community colleges (HSCCs) have a dual mission of authentically serving both Latinx students and other marginalized student population. This study aims to examine if community colleges have effectively served this dual mission by expanding access for Latinx students, low-income students, and other students of color upon being designated with the EHSI/HSI status. To answer the research question, we used a national dataset which was drawn from multiple sources between 2010 and 2017 and a generalized difference-in-differences approach. Our findings show that the EHSI/HSI designation increased the proportion of Latinx students and low-income students, but this expansion can be at a cost of access for other students of color. Practical implications are provided, including continuous federal funding, strategic enrollment management, and constant consideration of the dual mission of HSCCs.
This study explores trajectories and experiences of Latinx faculty, students and staff at a large, public university in the US. Using interviews and photo elicitation, we document the origins and different paths followed by Latinx into higher education. We note challenges faced by undocumented students, and the role of mentors to encourage participation of Latinx. We reflect on notions of success experienced by Latinx in academia, frequently associated with altruistic values of service to others. This notion of service can be turned into effective mentorship of students and junior faculty to strengthen the success of Latinx in academia.
There is little understanding of the ways in which students experience developmental mathematics courses at community colleges (Crisp, Reyes, & Doran, 2015). This study investigates the instructional experiences of students in an Intermediate Algebra course using qualitative methods that rely on interviews, surveys, classroom observations and classroom artifacts. I aim to understand (1) what are the experiences of students in a developmental mathematics class at a community college and (2) how students make sense of particular experiences. The findings from this study will support college mathematics departments by providing evidence of the classroom instructional experiences of students.
In this article, Anne-Marie Nunez uses data from a national longitudinal study of students enrolled in four-year public research universities to assess the effects of social capital and intercultural capital - the capacity to negotiate diverse racial/ ethnic environments - on Latino students' sense of belonging in college and on their perceptions of a hostile racial/ethnic climate. She finds that Latino students who are more familiar with diversity issues and who report more social and academic connection and engagement experience a greater sense of belonging even as they also experience a more hostile campus climate. Her findings provide a nuanced understanding of Latino students' college experiences, with implications for how access to intercultural capital through positive cross-racial interactions and diversity curricula may offer benefits that counterbalance the negative impact of marginalizing experiences and ultimately advance educational attainment.
Cabrera, Castaneda, Nora, and Hengstler  found considerable overlap between Tinto's [50, 52] and Bean's [4, 5, 7] models of student attrition. This study integrated the major propositions underlying both theoretical frameworks. Findings supported most of the hypothesized links and uncovered that environmental factors play a far more complex role than the one envisioned by Tinto .
This longitudinal study examined the role of perceptions of prejudice-discrimination on collegiate experiences and on college-related outcomes among minority and nonminority students at a public, predominately white, commuter institution. Results indicated that minorities were more prone to feel discrimination and prejudice while on campus than were whites and that these perceptions were found to affect minority students' adjustments to college and college-related outcomes.
In a study of 2,991 college students, researchers found significant differences between Latino and non-Latino students using MANOVA and chi-square statistics. Latino students were more likely to embrace diversity than non- Latino students, and were more likely to be concerned about financing their college educations. In addition, they were more likely than non-Latino students to work while in college. Finally, there were differences in the perception of the likely causes of departure between Latino and non-Latino students. Latino students were more likely to believe they would leave school because of a lack of finances, and because of a perceived lack of academic ability. The authors discuss how these differences in attitudes about diversity, and differences in academic preparation and financial situations, affect Latino students. They then ask the question: How can student affairs professionals lessen the combined burdens of minority status stress, finances, and college adjustment for Latino students?
To clarify the conceptual underpinnings of Tinto's theoretical model of students' departure, the study presented here tested a conceptual model of the antecedents of sense of belonging to examine the extent to which Latino students' background characteristics and college experiences in the first and second years contribute to their sense of belonging in the third year. The study found that discussions of course content with other students outside class and membership in religious and social-community organizations are strongly associated with students' sense of belonging. First-year experiences have positive effects, while perceptions of a hostile racial climate have direct negative effects on students' sense of belonging in the third year. The results suggest that greater attention needs to be paid to minority students' subjective sense of integration in campus life, temporal sequencing of college experiences, and new avenues for understanding students' adjustment to college.
This study examines the effects of financial aid packages on within-year persistence by African Americans, Hispanics, and Whites enrolled in Indiana's public system of higher education. Results indicate that financial aid recipients persisted better than or as well as non-aid recipients within each racial/ethnic group. College grades and other college experience variables also had a substantial influence on the disparity in aggregate persistence rates for various groups.