May 4, 2022

Survey Finds At-Risk and First-Gen Students View Online Learning as Foundation for Future Success

Anthology’s survey reveals push-pull dilemma facing students balancing work with studies, highlights benefits of linking degree programs and careers

Boca Raton, Fla., May 4, 2022Anthology, a leading provider of education solutions that support the entire learner lifecycle, today announced the results of its 2022 National Student Success Survey: Opportunities to Grow Student Success and Career Preparation. Findings revealed that students, especially those at-risk or first-generation, want more online offerings in learning and administrative support and value a clear connection between their program of study and future career.

“Student populations are more diverse than ever and shaping a student’s learning experience to best fit their life is critical to supporting their academic and career goals," said Richa Batra, Vice President of Student Success at Anthology. "As the global education community attempts to navigate what learning and career preparation will look like in the post-pandemic era, this survey underscores that providing a personalized experience delivered online will play a profound role going forward.”

Students Lean into Online for Both Learning and Support

Nearly four in 10 students prefer taking asynchronous online courses with no set meeting time. Only 13 percent of respondents desire fully in-person learning. Online courses are even more important for non-traditional students, with about half of students over 25 years old preferring asynchronous delivery and 70 percent of first-generation students preferring either synchronous or asynchronous online courses. Students also want the option to meet virtually with faculty members, ranking it highest among virtual support and learning options.

Rising Work Obligations Strain Student Completion

A total of 43 percent of students identified being able to finance their education as a challenge. And more than four in 10 reported a moderate or significant increase to the amount of time they spend working part or full-time in a paid position since the start of the pandemic. This highlights the push-pull dilemma for learners who have competing obligations and how rising financial concerns can potentially derail their learning journey. More than half of surveyed students also noted more time spent on assignments and class, potentially intensifying stress and making it more difficult to find the balance needed to complete courses and meet life obligations.

The Value of College and Tying Skills to Careers

Of students who received information about which careers their program of study prepares them for, 40 percent noted a positive impact on staying enrolled. This rose to nearly 50 percent for first-generation students. First-generation college students were also less likely to recognize securing a better job as a benefit of their education compared to continuing-generation students. This gap reinforces the need for institutions to continually educate students on the benefits of a college degree, particularly first-generation students.

Anthology’s 2022 National Student Success Survey targeted students across the country currently enrolled in four-year higher education institutions as well as community colleges with 1,165 students completing the survey. For more information and to access the report, click here.

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