Increasingly, mainstream scholarship awards include either expressly stated or not for adults and non-traditional students returning to college either for the first, second, or even third time. With student profiles changing along with industries and occupational fields, millions of scholarships are now tailored towards highly capable adults who have already acquired quite a bit of life experience. By definition, non-traditional students are usually over the age of 24 while attending an institution of higher learning.
Skip Navigation. Search box. Exactly what constitutes a nontraditional student has been the source of much discussion in recent research.
Use the link below to share a full-text version of this article with your friends and colleagues. Learn more. Nontraditional students, or adult learners, are the new majority in the classroom in any sector of higher education according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
They range from delayed college enrollment, to part-time studies combined with full-time work, to being a single parent, or simply the lack of a high school diploma. The original definition for nontraditional students only referred to the student being over age 25 when entering college. With about half of current students ranging in age from 25 to 75, being a nontraditional student is no longer rare or unusual, if it ever was.
Let friends in your social network know what you are reading about. College students who are older, have children or work full-time outnumber those who don't. Here's how they do it.
In the pursuit of one's higher education degree, determining the best choice of college can be all the more challenging when you are considered a "non-traditional" student. Non-traditional students are those who fall into categories that separate them from the more typical college student; the most common of these non-traditional scenarios may be parents returning to school, adult learners over 25, part-time college students, students balancing college with a full-time job, among other related qualifiers. Non-traditional students may also be drawn to colleges that provide an education in progressive, individualized methods more suited to the independent learner.
If you are considering attending college in a less than typical way, you may be wondering if you fall into the category of non-traditional students. Although there is not a one size fits all definition, students categorized in this manner are typically older than average undergraduate students. They may face unique challenges as college students because of their age and their particular life situations.
Jump to navigation. NCES projections of higher education enrollment from — suggest that the number of students over twenty-five will remain stable or increase during the current decade Hussar and Bailey These characteristics include. These influences include an aging and increasingly diverse population, the rapid pace of technological change, and the constantly shifting demands of the workplace in this era of a global economy.
A nontraditional student is a term originating in North America, that refers to a category of students at colleges and universities. Nontraditional students are contrasted with traditional students who "earn a high school diploma, enroll full time immediately after finishing high school, depend on parents for financial support, and either do not work during the school year or work part time". The nontraditional student designation has to a lesser extent been used to refer to socially or educationally disadvantaged students.
Gazing out over a classroom full of college students, professors are no longer looking at a room filled entirely with year-old students, who are fresh out of high school, excited to learn, and excite to be living on their own for the first time in the campus dorms. Instead, are now mixed with older students who went directly into the workforce after high school, who are working and raising families. They are looking for a career instead of jobs and want to find better ways to support their families.