The first-year undecided student population warrants considerable attention from higher education administrators and educators. As a group, research indicates undecided students can be susceptible to lower academic achievement and persistence rates when compared to their counterparts who have declared majors. Nationally, first-year students also tend to have lower persistence rates with nearly one quarter of entering first-year students not persisting to their second year of college. This susceptibility takes on added importance given that the population of undecided students in higher education is rapidly increasing despite more academic options being offered. This growth becomes even more evident when you look at the incoming first-year class as a whole—the fact that at most institutions, undecided students represent as much as one third of the incoming first-year class.
This webinar will review the current literature on first-year undecided students. This includes identifying the diversity of needs among this group and challenging the “deficiency” perspective that argues that first-year undecided students tend to have lower academic achievement and persistence rates compared to their peers. In addition, this webinar will review some of the best practices employed in delivering high-quality academic advising services that address the identified needs of this group. Finally, the presenter will discuss the implication for future practice, research, and policy.
- Discuss the significance of the various classification systems and nomenclature associated with undecided students
- Identify needs of first-year undecided students
- Examine multiple approaches used to providing advising services and programs to this population
- Highlight best practices in advising first-year undecided students
- Recommend considerations for future practice, research, and policy development relative to this population
- 2 & 4-year institutions
- Vice President of Academic Affairs/Instruction
- Vice President of Student Affairs
- Dean of Student Services/Affairs
- Career Services
- Enrollment Services
- Retention Specialist
- First Year Experience Coordinators
- Learning & Tutoring Centers