This article by Stephanie Marken and Zac Auter originally appeared on NJToday.net.
Approximately half of all U.S. adults who pursued or completed a postsecondary degree would change at least one aspect of their education experience if they could do it all over again, including their major or field of study, the institution they attended, or the type of degree they obtained.
These results are based on nearly 90,000 interviews conducted as part of the Education Consumer Pulsesurvey from June 29, 2016-March 26, 2017. The Education Consumer Pulse, launched in 2016 by Gallup and Strada Education Network, consists of interviews with U.S. adults aged 18-65 from all 50 states and the District of Columbia about their education paths and experiences.
Among the three key education decisions Gallup asked about — field of study, institution and degree type — U.S. higher education consumers most commonly say they would change their field of study. Thirty-six percent of U.S. adults who pursued or completed a postsecondary degree would choose a different field of study. Significantly fewer (28%) would select a different institution, and 12% would obtain a different degree type.
Across Education Levels, Major/Field of Study Is Most Common Regret
Across all education levels, U.S. adults are much more likely to say they wish they could change their major or field of study than the type of degree they obtained. Those with some college, but no degree, and those whose highest level of education is a bachelor’s degree are the most likely to have second thoughts about their major, 42% and 40%, respectively. By comparison, associate degree holders and those who completed a technical or vocational program are slightly less likely to say they would change their field of study.
Postgraduate degree holders are the least likely to report they would pursue a different field of study, with about a quarter of those who pursued or obtained a postgraduate degree saying they would change their field of study.
Those with some college, but no degree, are the most likely to say they would change at least one of their education decisions. Surprisingly, even though individuals in this group were unable to complete their degree, the 59% who would redo an education decision if they could is roughly similar to the 54% of associate degree holders and 52% of bachelor’s degree holders who say the same.
Meanwhile, those who pursued (41%) or obtained (37%) a postgraduate degree are by far the least likely to say they would change at least one of these education decisions.
Most U.S. Adults Say They Had High-Quality Postsecondary Education
Although approximately half of all U.S. adults regret at least one of their education choices, most report they had a high-quality postsecondary experience. For all education levels, other than those who left college without a degree, at least half of adults strongly agree that they received a high-quality education.
The finding that half of all U.S. adults would change at least one aspect of their education path if they could suggests students need more information and guidance before making important education decisions.
Of the three critical education decisions Gallup asked about, individuals are most likely to say they would choose a different field of study. This could be rooted in the challenges consumers face in using their education to obtain their preferred job, such as when their field of study does not directly align with their desired career. It also could reflect changes in the employment market since graduates pursued or obtained their postsecondary degree.
Still, U.S. adults’ mostly positive assessments of the quality of their postsecondary experience suggest that students can benefit from postsecondary training and that institutions are largely delivering on students’ expectations for meaningful training and education.
These data raise several key questions for postsecondary leaders, policymakers, employers and consumers of education. These include how and why students select their field of study and why so many would change this, or some other aspect of their education path. Like those in other industries, education leaders can learn a great deal from surveys asking current and former students about their experiences as education consumers. This is an important first step to improve outcomes for future students and encourage innovation in postsecondary education.
Learn more via the Education Consumer Pulse Inaugural Report: On Second Thought: U.S. Adults Reflect on Their Education Decisions. Follow @GallupHigherEd and @StradaEducation online and use #EduPulse to join the conversation.
Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted June 29, 2016-March 26, 2017, with a random sample of 89,492 U.S. adults, aged 18-65, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting and are calculated at the 95% confidence level.
Virginia’s largest community college and a prominent public research university have co-partnered with an educational management and student support service provider to improve academic outcomes for transfer students.
Edtech integration can cause headaches if technology solutions aren't "getting along"--but a new free tool could help alleviate that pain
New building will house over 500 employees
DXtera Institute, a nonprofit consortium of higher ed institutions, ed tech companies and other postsecondary education professionals, has released a free Next Generation Integration Scorecard (NGIS) aimed at improving technology integration in higher education.
The letter alerting Cal State Northridge students that they were being put on academic probation was pretty blunt and scary: shape up or risk getting kicked out.
Michigan State University has long worked with and competed against other colleges and universities in the United States.
One of the students leaving today on “Roadtrip Indiana” says she expects an “awakening” of what Indiana is about. Purdue University senior Shannon Newerth is joining two other Indiana students on a two-week RV trip throughout the state to take part in career exploration and work-based learning opportunities. The trip, organized in part by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education and several private partners, will be the subject of an upcoming public television documentary.
As a lifelong baseball fan, former high school baseball player, and coach for 20 years, I have always been struck by how deeply intertwined baseball and learning really are. An education advocate for most of my career, I have seen firsthand how a passion for sports can shift mindsets and create sustainable pathways to college, meaningful careers, and inspired lives.
More than half of adults in the U.S. would change at least one aspect of their higher education experience, according to a new survey from Gallup and the Strada Education Network. Common regrets were choice of institution and major or field of study. Comparatively, relatively few regretted their degree type.
A majority of Americans who attended college say they received a quality education. But half would change at least one of these three decisions if they could do it all over again: the type of degree they pursued or their choice of major or institution.
CLEVELAND, Ohio – Half of college graduates regret their choice of school or major, according to a national survey.
Regrets, I’ve had a few…and so have most Americans — at least when it comes to decisions they’ve made regarding their education. A new Gallup poll out today finds that 51 percent of Americans would change at least one of their education decisions if they had to do it all over again. Thirty-six percent said they’d choose a different major, 28 percent would attend a different school and 12 percent would pursue a different type of degree, according to the poll.
On May 2, the Senate Career and Technical Education Caucus in conjunction with the Alliance for Excellent Education hosted “College and Career Pathways: Stories of Innovation.” The Alliance is a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy organization focusing on high school redesign for underrepresented students. The briefing revolved around “highlighting innovative approaches across the country to college and career pathways that have led to positive outcomes for traditionally underserved students.”
Data analytics has proven to be a powerful tool in a number of industries, and in higher ed, it has significant potential to help institutions streamline operations and improve experiences for students. But in using that data, colleges and universities must also be careful to also consider the underlying causes behind some of those numbers.
This is important news for admissions officers, who may feel that low-income students pose more of a risk at a four-year college or university. These students are just as capable of thriving as those from more affluent households, but institutions and policymakers must also consider that they may need more resources.
In a Monday morning session at the ASU+GSV Summit in Salt Lake City, a panel of thought leaders discussed how to expand access and success, particularly among low-income, first-generation and underrepresented student populations.
INDIANAPOLIS — Higher Education Commissioner Teresa Lubbers recently announced a new initiative, “Roadtrip Indiana,” that aims to help Hoosier students make more informed decisions about their futures through intentional career exploration and direct engagement with employers across the state.
TPT Global Tech, Inc. (OTCQB: TPTW) announced today it has completed its $1.75M Asset acquisition of SpeedConnect LLC (“SpeedConnect”) and the assumption of certain liabilities. The Asset Purchase Agreement required a deposit of $500,000, paid as part of entering into the Asset Purchase Agreement and an additional $500,000 paid at closing.
Strada Education Network, which recently changed its name from USA Funds and is now focused on supporting college completion and success, announced Monday that it had purchased InsideTrack, which provides student coaching services for hundreds of colleges. InsideTrack says it has served 1.5 million students with its outsourced coaching services, which research has found to be effective.
NCAN recently closed the Call for Proposals period for our National Conference that will take place in San Diego from Sept. 11-13, marking an exciting time of the year for us here at NCAN. We look forward to reading about ideas from members and non-members alike across all of the different threads of the college access and success field. We read about exciting ideas, thoughtful approaches, new research, and (near and dear to my heart) how we evaluate what is or is not working. Proposals flood in from every corner of our field and the country.
TRACKING SUCCESS: Student coaching startup InsideTrack has merged with Strada Education Network, a newly formed nonprofit made up of companies focused on student success in higher ed. According to a press announcement, Strada Education will own InsideTrack, which will remain an “independent entity” under CEO Pete Wheelan.
The Jackie Robinson Foundation (JRF) hosted a groundbreaking ceremony in New York City to announce that the start of construction has begun for the highly anticipated Jackie Robinson Museum.
Future. It’s a word that appears in the titles of at least 65 panels at next week’s annual ASU-GSV summit, where educators, innovators, and entrepreneurs will meet in Salt Lake City to talk about the Future of Education for America’s 74 million children, as well as adult learners.
Polish the dress shoes. Stiffen those shirt collars. This week, many of the education industry’s bigwigs are planning their annual pilgrimage to the next “ tech mecca” of America. Salt Lake City, recently christened by Forbes with that title, will host the ASU+GSV Summit on May 8-10.
The Jackie Robinson Museum is one step closer to becoming a reality.
The Jackie Robinson Foundation (JRF) hosted a groundbreaking ceremony in New York City on Thursday to announce that the start of construction has begun for the highly anticipated Jackie Robinson Museum.
NEW YORK (AP) — Ground was broken for the Jackie Robinson Museum after a 10-year wait — matching the length of the Hall of Famer’s barrier-breaking major-league career.