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THE SINGLE PARENT AS A NON-TRADITIONAL NURSING STUDENT: EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

A Thesis Presented to The Faculty of the School of Nursing Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) Lucena City

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Bachelor of Science in Nursing

MARIA AMELIE S. RICAFORT JULIE ANN PRODIGO WINCHELL PIANA March 2009

APPROVAL SHEET This thesis entitled, THE SINGLE PARENT AS A NURSING STUDENT: NON-TRADITIONAL

EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON ACADEMIC

PERFORMANCE prepared and submitted by MARIA AMELIE S. RICAFORT, JULIE ANN PRODIGO and WINCHELL PIANA in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Bachelor in Science in Nursing has been examined and recommended for acceptance and approval for Oral Examination.

NELSON HUGO Adviser ORAL EXAMINATION COMMITTEE Approved by the Committee on Oral Examination with a grade of _________________________________ . _______________________________________________. Chairperson ______________________________ Member _________________________________ Member

Accepted and approved in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

MRS. REBECCA S.A. SERGIO, RN, MAN Dean, College of Nursing

ii ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Words cannot truly express the researchers profound thanks to the following people, who made completion of this study possible: To Mr. Nelson Hugo, for his guidance as research adviser. To Nursing Dean, Mrs. Rebecca Sergio, an extraordinarily

effective and inspiring mentor, for your gifts of knowledge and compassion; To our distinguished panel for providing further enrichment. To our classmates for providing companionship and interaction. To our language adviser for polishing the text and presentation. To our dear parents who taught us the value of a good education, and our siblings who have been sources of unceasing encouragement. To the 56 nursing students, the respondents of this study,

whose cooperation allowed us to precious insights about academic performance among traditional and non-traditional students. And most of all, to the Almighty God, source of all wisdom and strength, thank You for blessings and grace to live each day.

Maria Amelie , Julie Ann, and Winchell

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DEDICATION

This work is lovingly dedicated to our respective families, who shared the risks and sacrifices required to complete it.

Maria Amelie , Julie Ann, and Winchell

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TABLE OF CONTENTS APPROVAL SHEET i

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT ii DEDICATION TABLE OF CONTENTS. LIST OF TABLES. LIST OF FIGURES THESIS ABSTRACT.. iii iv vi vii viii

CHAPTER I THE PROBLEM Introduction.

Page

Statement of the Problem4 Hypotheses . 5

Conceptual Framework. . 6 Scope and Limitation of the Study.. 6 Significance of the Study 8

v Definition of Terms 9 II REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE AND STUDIES Related Literature. 11 Related Studies III RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Research Design. 20 20 21 15

Research Locale.. Population and Sample. Research 21

Instrument..

Data Gathering Procedures 22 Statistical Treatment of 23

Data. IV

PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA 26

SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Summary of Findings. 40 Conclusions. 44 Recommendations.. 45

vi Implications of the Study 46 VI VII BIBLIOGRAPHY. APPENDICES Annex A: Annex B: Annex C: Letter to Respondents 52 Research Instrument .. 53 48

Curriculum Vitae of the Researchers .. 56

LIST OF TABLES Table 1.1. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Age Table 1.2. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Gender .. Table 1.3. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Civil Status Table 1.4. Percentage Distribution of Respondents 26 27 27

vii According to Number of Children Table 1.5. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Living Arrangements Table 1.6. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Education. Table 1.7. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Grades Point Average. Table 2.1. Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience (Single & Married Respondents) . Table 2.2 Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience (Separated & Annulled Respondents) Table 3.1. Indicators of Academic Performance.. Table 4-1. T-Test Results for Finding the Significant Difference Between Demographic Characteristics and Adequacy of Preparedness for Academic Experience Table 4-3. T-tests on Finding the Significant Difference Between the Assessment Made by Single & Married and Separated/Annulled Students .. 28 28 29 29 31 32 34

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38

LIST OF FIGURES

Fig. 1 -

Conceptual Paradigm of the Study (Effects of Single Parenthood on Academic Performance)

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Abstract
Title: THE SINGLE PARENT AS A STUDENT: NON-TRADITIONAL NURSING

EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON

ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE Researchers: MARIA AMELIE S. RICAFORT, JULIE ANN PRODIGO and WINCHELL PIANA Degree: BACHELOR OF SCIENCE IN NURSING

ix This study focused on the relationship between single-parenthood and academic performance. It was conducted among 56 student nurses of the Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) and Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation (MSEUF) in Lucena City. To the extent possible, an equivalent ratio of single-parent students and

married students or students with live-in arrangements were asked to participate in this study so that comparisons can be made and conclusions drawn. A questionnaire was the main tool of the study. Statement of the Problem The following research questions guided the study: 1. What is the demographic profile of the respondents in terms of: a) age b) gender c) civil status d) number of children e) living arrangements f) educational level g) grade point average 2. How adequately prepared for the college experience do the respondents perceive themselves to be? 3. What factors do respondents perceive affect their academic performance? 4. Is there a significant difference in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile?

x 5. Is there a significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile? 6. What are the implications of this study? Hypotheses This study was guided by the following hypotheses: 1. There is no significant difference in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile. 2. There is no significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile.

Summary of Findings 1. Demographic Characteristics of Respondents A total of Fifty-Six (56) respondents were selected for this study. Of the 56

respondents, 35 or 62.50% were 18-25 years of age; 14 or 25% were 26-33 years old; six (6) or 10.71% were 33-40 years old; and only one (1) or 1.79% was 41 years old or older. There are more females than male in this study. When grouped according to civil status, most or 33 of 56 respondents (or 58.93%) were single. Married respondents numbered 13, constituting 23.21% of the sample while those who claimed they were separated or that their marriages had been annulled also numbered 13 (23.21%). In terms of number of children, the highest number of respondents were those who indicated they had no children (36 or 64.28%). This was followed by those who said

xi they had two to three (2-3) children (11 or 19.64%). Nine (9) respondents, or 16.07%, declared they had one (1) child. None of the respondents indicated that they had four (4) or more children. When grouped according to living arrangements, 35 or 62.5% of respondents indicated that they lived with their parents or other family, while 14 or 25.0% said they lived with their husband or other parent-partners. Seven (7) others said they lived with no other parents in the home. In terms of level of nursing education, majority or 35 of 56 respondents (62.5%) said they were in fourth year; while 15 or 26.79% indicated they were in third year. Only three (3) or 5.35% of respondents said they were in second year and another three (3) or 5.35% indicated they were in first year. In terms of grade point average, majority or 26 of 56 respondents (46.43%) said they obtained a GPA of 2.51-3.25; while 19 or 33.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.76 2.50. Only six (6) or 10.71 % of respondents said they obtained a GPA of 3.26 4.00 and another five (5) or 8.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.00 1.75 2. Adequacy of Preparedness for Academic Experience Single and married nursing students in this study rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience in practically all indicators, the highest of which included skills that allowed them to interact with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.98); financial resources for schooling (WM = 3.63); adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.58); network of moral and emotional support while schooling (WM = 3.51); and self confidence (WM = 3.49). The only self-rated skills indicators for

xii which single and married nursing students indicated a lower degree of preparedness (or a rating of prepared), was in emotional stability (WM = 3.16). Separated or annulled students rated themselves very highly on the scale as well, indicating a rating of very prepared in a total of 6 out of 10 indicators, namely: communication skills (WM = 3.77); financial resources for schooling (WM = 3.69), self confidence (WM = 3.54); adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.54); and interacting with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.46). The lowest ranked indicators (but still indicated nevertheless as knowledge factors for which separated and annulled students were prepared) were network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling, refreshed study skills, physical health and having firmly established learning or career goals (WM = 3.15 for each).

3. Academic Performance Respondents expressed the highest degree of agreement to statement # 9, I perceive no difference between the academic performance of traditional students and non-traditional single parent students (WM = 3.14). A high degree of agreement was also expressed to statement #10, I have no difficulty managing my time and priorities (WM = 3.11); and to statement #2, I have been able to attend my classes regularly (WM = 3.09).

xiii Respondents likewise expressed agreement that Generally speaking, I have been able to comply with projects, assignments and other academic requirements on time; and that All in all, I have received good grades in my subjects. Respondents expressed disagreement to only three (3) statements presented to them, that: I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school, I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others. 4. Hypotheses Testing Significant differences were found in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile. Significant differences were likewise found in academic performance when

respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile. Conclusions From the summary of findings, the researcher has arrived at the following primary conclusions. Single and married (traditional) students in this study rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience. High rating

notwithstanding, the single and married (traditional) students in this study indicated a lower degree of preparedness (or a rating of prepared), in emotional stability. Separated or annulled (non-traditional) students in this study also rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience. They also collectively identified lower-rated areas (for which a rating of prepared was given).

xiv These included: network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling,

refreshed study skills, physical health and having firmly established learning or career goals Respondents in this study agreed that they had excellent academic performance in almost all indicators. The only statements to which they expressed disagreement in this regard were: I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school, I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others. All in all, significant differences were found in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience and in academic performance, when respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile, but this were in regard to age and year level in nursing. Marital status did not seem to play a significant role in the difference in perceptions. Recommendations: Based on the findings and conclusions of this study, the researcher submits the following recommendations: 1. Single parenthood was not correlated to a student's performance. Thus further research is recommended, with a larger sample size and a more refined research tool. 2. This research suggests that older students have acquired some adaptive skills, in both behavior and judgment, that reduce the chance of poorer grades. These skills, being positively correlated to motivational and cognitive abilities, tend to be linked positively with age. The researcher, therefore, recommend that educators

xv consider adopting an expanded method of cooperative learning involving older students who act as models of maturity, confidence, and rational thinking in small group instructional activities. Implications of this Study One of the primary implications for instruction is the expanded use of cooperative learning. Vertical grouping is an example of an expanded method of cooperative learning involving older students who act as models of maturity, confidence, and rational thinking in small group instructional activities. Older, nontraditional students serve a leadership function in addition to possible tutoring roles. Traditional college-age students benefit from vertical grouping by being exposed to more mature levels of cognitive interaction and to the older students' increased experience with effective coping strategies. In return, older students will likely appreciate the recognition and the opportunity to display their advanced maturity and their more experienced social and personal skills. In fact, they learn by teaching.

CHAPTER 1 THE PROBLEM AND ITS BACKGROUND


INTRODUCTION In recent years, faculty and counselors at college campuses across the nation have stepped up their efforts to better understand the needs of the students they serve, in an attempt to improve retention and graduation rates for an increasingly diverse and non-traditional student body. The research presented here contributes to this

effort by examining the relationship between single-parent nursing students, their attitudes and beliefs about college work, their achievement motivational profiles, and their grades . By the end of the 1980's, researchers had compiled a fairly clear picture of the formula for success for "traditional" college students, that is 18-22 year old students matriculating straight from high school. This formula included the adequacy of students' academic preparation, the appropriateness of their educational expectations and career goals, the "anticipatory socialization" (Weidman, 2000) they had received from parents, peers and others prior to entering college, and their assimilation into their new milieu upon matriculation. (Tinto, 2003). Recently, however, frustrated by the relatively low rates of college entrance, retention and graduation among minority and non-traditional student populations, several scholars have called into question the universality of some of these patterns (Strage, 2000). Still, relatively little is known and much as assumed about differences

2 in college students' experience and success as a function of their age, the route they travel to arrive at the university, and their general experience with college. The single-parent student, who is the focus of this study, is a parent who cares for one or more children without the assistance of another parent in the home. This unique situation renders the single parent returning to college to finish a degree as part of a growing population of non-traditional college students. Single parenthood may occur for a variety of reasons. It could be opted for by the parent (as in divorce, adoption, artificial insemination, surrogate motherhood, or extramarital pregnancy), or be the result of an unforeseeable occurrence (such as death or abandonment by one parent). The living and parenting arrangements of single parents are diverse. A number live in households with family or other adults. When parents separate, one party usually parents for the majority of the time but most continue to share parenting to some extent with the other parent (Callister, 2006). Single parent families are at a higher risk of poverty than couple families, and on average single mothers have poorer health than couple mothers. In fact, single parenting is strongly associated with an increased risk of a number of negative social, behavioral and emotional outcomes both for the parent and for his/her children (Millar, 2001). A number of factors characteristically separate nontraditional students, like single parents, from regular college students. These learners tend to be achievement oriented, highly motivated, and relatively independent with special needs for flexible schedules and instruction appropriate for their developmental level (Cross, 2000).

3 They generally prefer more active approaches to learning and value opportunities to integrate academic learning with their life and work experiences (Benshoff, 2001). The phenomenon of single parents in college studies has a wider sphere of interest world-wide because they now constitute a noticeable fraction of the

university population in all countries (Bowl, 2000). Little has been studied about how these single parents experience university or college life. Nor has there been a full exploration of whether and how universities and colleges are changing to meet the needs of this growing group of single-parent students. Single-parent students must balance their studies with these external requirements, leaving no time for extracurricular activities and placing them "at risk" of not completing their studies. The pioneer studies on non-traditional students--- like single parents--- recommended more research focusing on this group is needed in order to help facilitate the creation of an environment that best meets their educational needs and goals and develop intervention strategies to reduce drop-out rates among these students (Hoyt, 2002). This study, therefore, aims to investigate the juxtaposed experiences of being a single parent and being a non-traditional nursing student in relation to the singleparents goal orientations, grades and study experiences in nursing education at the Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) and Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation (MSEUF). In undertaking a study that examines how single parenthood may affect academic performance, the researchers find support in literature that upholds the long-held belief that student academic performance depends on a range of socio-

4 economic, psychological and environmental factors. The findings of several research studies have, in fact, focused on the view that student performance is affected by different factors, including personal circumstances and family background (Hansen, 2000). This field of study was encouraged by an article entitled , Just Me and My Baby, published in the Cougar, CEFIs official magazine (Ursua, 2009), which chronicled the experiences of a single parent student at CEFI. The article raised awareness about the unique patterns of college experiences between regular and single-parent students, particularly in terms of causing an institution of higher learning, like the Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI), to re-think the focus of academic and student affairs programs. Research has shown that nontraditional students, which include single parents returning to college, have needs that differ from those of traditional-age students (Thon, 2004). The willingness of CEFI to modify existing programs and develop new services geared to adult populations will have a positive impact on their ability to attract, serve, and satisfy the educational needs of adult students.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM This study focused on the relationship between single-parenthood and academic performance. To enable the researchers to draw conclusions about the effect of single parenthood on academic performance, two kinds of respondents were engaged: single-parent students and married students or those who live-in with partners, and thus have another parent at home. The following research questions guided the study:

2. What is the demographic profile of the respondents in terms of: a) age b) gender c) civil status d) number of children e) living arrangements f) educational level g) grade point average 2. How adequately prepared for the college experience do the respondents perceive themselves to be? 7. What factors do respondents perceive affect their academic performance? 8. Is there a significant difference in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile? 9. Is there a significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile? 10. What are the implications of this study?

HYPOTHESES This study was guided by the following hypotheses:

6 3. There is no significant difference in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile. 4. There is no significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile.

THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK The theoretical framework used to guide this study is Vygotsky's Social Cognition Theory. Vygotsky is one of the leading contributors to the science of

learning with his theory of social cognition which places a great importance on the culture in which a learner develops. Every person develops in the context of a culture and according to the social cognition theory, culture is the prime determinant of individual development. A person 's learning development is affected in two main ways by the culture, including the culture of family environment. The theory of social cognition asserts that interactions with surrounding culture and social agents contribute significantly to a learners performance (Schunk, 2001).

CONCEPTUAL PARADIGM This study centered on the unique college experiences of a single-parent nursing student and will reflect Vygotsky's assertions that a person 's learning

development is affected in two main ways by the culture, including the culture of family environment. This is congruent with other education scholars who support the

7 observation that student performance is very much dependent on SEB socioeconomic background (Beaumont-Walters & Soyibo, 2008). The conceptual model in Figure 1 consists of three (3) interdependent and interacting components which the researchers view as essential for understanding the academic experience of a single-parent student nurse. or

INPUT
Age & Gender Civil Status No. of Children Living Arrangements Educational Level Grade Point Average

THROUGHPUT

OUTPUT

NURSE

Analysis of the effects of single parenthood on academic performance

Self Assessed Adequacy of Preparedness for College

RECOMMENDE D MODIFICATION OF PROGRAMS AND SERVICES FOR NONTRADITIONAL NURSING STUDENTS

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Fig. 1. EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

The first component, the first box, represents the assumption that the respondents bring to the study a prior context consisting of their own perceptions about the academic experience, which are shaped by the demographic parameters identified in the study (age, gender, civil status, number of children and living arrangements). What perceptions these respondents bring with them to the study

serves as the foundation for the academic experience. Thus, the first component provides opportunities for the respondents to weave new learning into their existing knowledge base and thus to broaden and deepen their understanding and experience. The second component of the model represents the analysis this researcher will undertake of the self-rated perceptions of adequacy of respondents. The third component of the model, the last outer box, represents the outcome or output of the study All of the other components of the model lead to the

understanding of the effects of single parenthood on academic performance and the emerging need for academic programs and services to be modified to address the unique needs of non-traditional nursing students..

SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY This study was conducted among 56 student nurses of the Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) and Manuel S. Enverga University Foundation (MSEUF) in Lucena City. To the extent possible, an equivalent ratio of single-

parent students and married students or students with live-in arrangements were asked to participate in this study so that comparisons can be made and conclusions

9 drawn. Each participant was requested to accomplish a questionnaire on his

perceptions about his/her own academic performance, self-rated adequacy and college experiences. A limitation of the study is the small sample size of non-traditional students college students. As a result, the conclusions reached in this study may not

necessarily apply beyond its scope. A second limitation is that the difficulty of locating single-parent nursing students (who normally are not willing to discuss their life experiences with others) seriously impeded the ability of the researchers to reach the target number of respondents.

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY The researchers expect this study to contribute to the following sectors: Nursing Students. To increase awareness about the emerging

population of non-traditional learners in tertiary education, and the unique learning opportunities they bring to regular students because of their experience and maturity. Nursing Educators. To validate the emergent need for academic program and service delivery modifications that will address the needs of the growing number of non-traditional students in nursing. Nursing Profession. To encourage study of the impact of the entry into the profession of non-traditional learners.

10 DEFINITION OF TERMS The following terms have been defined operationally and conceptually to facilitate understanding of this study: Academic Performance, in this study, will be measured using three (3) factors: grades, attendance in classes and number of hours a

student spends on study after attending the classes. Effect in this study, is the result, outcome or implications of single parenthood on academic performance. Non-Traditional Nursing Student refers to a student of nursing who is an adult who returns to school full- or part-time while maintaining responsibilities such as employment, family, and other responsibilities of adult life. (This, in contrast to the traditional student who matriculates straight from high school). Single Parent, in the context of this study, is described as a parent who cares for one or more children without the assistance of another parent in the home. Single Parenthood refers to the state of being a single parent.

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CHAPTER II REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE AND STUDIES


A discussion of literature reviews, informational articles or publications, research papers, studies and dissertations on single parenthood, non-traditional

students and academic performance are presented in this chapter.

RELATED LITERATURE In much of the literature, the term nontraditional refers to students who are age 25 or older, but it has also been defined using the background characteristics or risk factors of the students. Ely (2007) highlights specific needs of the students age 25 and older. Typically, these students must balance school with employment, family, and financial responsibilities, making successful completion of their educational objectives more difficult. They have little time for extracurricular activities and spend most of their time on campus in the classroom. Therefore, these nontraditional students need flexible schedules to improve their basic academic, study, decision-making, and stress management skills, and to receive instruction appropriate to their developmental level. In addition to practical concerns, such as improved parking, registration, financial aid, social networking and support, counseling, child care, and information

12 services, adult students would benefit from specialized customer service and appreciate being treated like adults and feeling as if they belong at the college (Raisman, 2002). Ely also points out that social integration is very important, and since most of this socializing occurs in the context of the classroom, faculty play a crucial role in the process. In addition, active and collaborative learning approaches are highly valued. Another approach focuses on factors that may increase students' risk of attrition (NCES, 2008). This approach focuses on behaviors that are amenable to change and allows for interventions at various stages in a student's educational life. The National Center for Education Statistics has identified seven such factors: (1) not enrolling within the same year as completion of high school, (2) attending part-time, (3) being financially independent of parents, (4) working full-time, (5) having dependents other than a spouse, (6) being a single parent, and (7) not having a high school diploma. Three fourths of students in two-year colleges have at least one factor. Dweck and Leggett (2008) argue that there are two distinct behavioral patterns that can contribute to students' achievement goal orientations. Learning goals are characterized as the most positive approach, and generally include a desire to increase competence and continually improve oneself. A learning orientation results in the most adaptive responses, such as increased effort to solve a problem or more perseverance when confronted with a difficult situation (Roedel, Schraw, & Plake, 2004). Conversely, a performance goal orientation is likely to reflect maladaptive responses, and is characterized by a focus on outcome and a desire to avoid negative

13 feedback. This orientation often leads to increased anxiety and an inability to persist when faced with obstacles (Eppler & Harju, 2007). Previous research has investigated the impact of achievement goal orientations on academic success in elementary school children (Eppler & Harju, 2007), yet little research has been aimed at the assessment of college-aged students. One of the few studies to address the effects of goal orientations on achievement at the collegiate level found that students with a strong learning goal orientation were more apt to succeed in an introductory science course than were students with a relatively weak learning goal orientation (Roedel & Schraw, 2005). According to Dweck and Leggett (2008), performance goals have been correlated with the avoidance of learning opportunities and deterioration of academic performance. Investigations on these two types of goals have demonstrated that the most favorable outcome entails an equal balance between both learning and performance goals (Dweck & Leggett, 2008). Another study to investigate achievement motivation goals in college students in relation to academic performance found that nontraditional college students endorsed a learning goal orientation significantly more than did traditional college students (Eppler & Harju, 2007). They also discovered that the older the nontraditional student was, the more frequently they adopted learning goals and were more committed to them than their younger traditional peers. The proportion of adults 25 years or older who are undergraduate students continues to increase (Bauman et al., 2004). Some literature suggests these students may experience special difficulties and require services to address their needs

14 (Fairchild, 2003). Four-year colleges and universities have especially been criticized for not providing services that might retain nontraditional students (Bundy and Smith, 2004). However, the relationship between the presence of barriers to educational attainment and actual use of services is not often studied. Instead, nontraditional students have been asked to indicate the likelihood they would use services rather than their actual use (Bauman et al., 2004). It is important to investigate the link between circumstances of nontraditional students thought to be associated with difficulties in an academic setting and actual use of services that may address problems of older students. Mercer (2003) identified three types of barriers confronted by older students: situational, dispositional, and institutional. Situational constraints can include family circumstances (marital status, dependents), employment, and civic involvement. These situational barriers may result in time conflicts with academic scheduling, work, and other responsibilities. Some researchers note that off-campus family caregiving, employment, and community organizations may intrude on opportunities for educational attainment (Fairchild, 2003). Competing demands for time and attention may place adult students at a disadvantage in completing their degrees (Jacobs and King, 2002). Dispositional barriers refer to intrapersonal attributes and are more difficult to define and measure. Some researchers believe adult students may have adjustment difficulties when they return to an educational setting. "Adult students are intimidated upon initial return to college" (Carlin, 2001 p. 10). They may worry about not

15 competing well with traditional age students, have perceptions of inadequate study skills, or have concerns about fitting in with younger students in class. Institutional barriers refer to aspects of the structure of educational organizations that may impede older students' attainment and fail to meet their needs. These barriers may include inconvenient class times and office hours, inadequate career planning for adults, and a lack of opportunities for campus involvement that accommodate interests and needs of nontraditional students (Fairchild, 2003). These and other potential barriers have been used to suggest academic and social services that may benefit nontraditional students.

RELATED STUDIES A British study in 2002 showed that more people are living alone, or as single parents, than in a traditional family unit. On the other hand, a Philippine study (Sibal et.al, 2002) noted the following interesting findings: Among Filipino workers, 7 percent of those who are not married indicated that they have children (solo parents, with an average of 2 children). Unmarried workers who support dependents constitute a significant 45.3 percent of the sample. There are more women solo parents than men (5.3 percent women, compared to only 1.8 percent of the men). The proportion of women who support dependents are even greater: 30 percent, as opposed to 15.3 percent for the men.

16 The highest incidence of solo parents is in the business processing and telecommunications sectors, averaging at 16 solo parents in each enterprise, compared to the over all average of 11 solo parents. In their study of non-traditional undergraduate student attrition Bean and Metzner (2005) developed a model conceptualizing student persistence as dependent on 1) four sets of variables, including: (a) a student's background, (b) academic variables, (c) environmental variables such as employment and finances, and (d) "intent to leave" factor, and 2) two sets of outcomes, which are: (a) academic 'college GPA', and (b) psychological - utility, satisfaction, goal commitment and stress. All these variables, in turn, affect intent to leave. The primary variable predicting dropout was the lack of institutional fit in their study. Specifically, the findings indicated the importance of peer socialization in preventing dropout. Nontraditional students need many different kinds of support and assistance from family, friends, and institutions of higher learning. Research evidence suggests that "both [sexes] have difficulties juggling the roles of student, worker, and family member" (Muench, 2007, p. 10). Adult students need help in building their selfconfidence as students, in acquiring or refreshing study skills, and in managing their time and other resources while in school. In addition, adult students benefit from opportunities to interact with their peers and need to be actively involved in the educational process through sharing their relevant work and life experiences (Muench, 2007). Clayton and Smith (2007) identified eight primary motivations for nontraditional women students' decisions to pursue an undergraduate degree: self-

17 improvement; self-actualization; vocational; role; family; social; humanitarian; and, knowledge. Many of these women (56%) cited multiple motives for returning to school. In a study of married re-entry women students, Hooper (2009) found that: the longer the woman had been a successful student, the higher her self-esteem; the longer the woman had been in school, the higher the anxiety experienced by the husband; and, the more traditional the roles and responsibilities within the family, the greater the guilt the woman experienced about her student role. Other developmental issues for women who return to school (Terrell, 2000) include: feeling guilty about not "being there" for their children; concerns about quality and expense of childcare; \ feelings of responsibility for maintaining their role within the family; making compromises in careers due to family considerations; minimal individual free time; perceived lack of credibility when returning to college; insufficient support from family for returning to school.

Research on nontraditional male students is limited. Muench (2007) found that both sexes experienced fears of failure and self-doubt. Men, however, suffered more from lack of self-confidence, while women experienced more guilt. Among the nontraditional students studied by Bauer and Mott (2000): men were changing careers while women were looking to advance within the same career field; women more than men experienced competing pressures of child care, financial, and school responsibilities;

18 men more than women tended to be frustrated about loss of time and money in returning to school. Coley (2000) asserts that there are seven demographic factors that put students at risk of not attaining a degree or completing a program. These factors include delayed entry, part-time enrollment, full-time work, financial independence, dependents, single parenthood, and community college attendance without a high school diploma. These risk factors are common characteristics of adult students, which leads one to the assumption that adult students are destined to drop out of college programs. Yet they often leave programs before completion due to factors other than those cited by Coley. Academic failure, social isolation, and family responsibilities are also factors that put adult students at risk of giving up before program completion. Adult students juggle several roles everyday. Fitting in time to study and complete assignments can present major difficulties for students and may lead to academic failure. Though time constraints are one cause of academic failure, a more likely reason for adult students is their approach to learning versus the teaching styles of their instructors. Adult students are influenced by prior academic and life experiences and may differ from traditional students in their metacognitive knowledge and abilities (Donaldson &. Graham, 2008). Older students are inclined to adopt a comprehensionfocused approach to learning aimed at comprehending content material instead of using study strategies aimed at rote recall (Richardson, 2005). Students required to take developmental courses are also at risk of academic failure. They entered college at academic levels below their peers and are less likely to persist than other students.

19 Assessments performed after students complete general education coursework can alert student service professionals to students who continue to be at risk of failure Jalomo, 2000). Married students and those responsible for the care of children have family responsibilities before enrolling in college. The responsibilities are not lessened after enrollment. The pressure to provide for families and concentrate on coursework is overwhelming for some students. Women are often laden with a disproportionate burden of household tasks and caregiver responsibilities when enrolled in college courses (Carney-Crompton &L Tan, 2002). Managing multiple roles is a source of stress for female students. Parents feel guilty about being unavailable when their children need them, with mothers of children under thirteen reporting the most conflict (Terrell, 2000). Women with older children may persist to graduation, whereas those with younger children may interrupt their education to fulfill family responsibilities (Carney-Crompton & Tan, 2002). A synthesis of literature reviewed indicates that adults---among them, single parents--- pursue higher education for various reasons including personal enrichment, change of career, or a requirement for promotion. The majority of adult students enroll in colleges to fulfill educational and training needs. Adult students may face barriers when attempting to enroll in college. Program planners must understand characteristics of adult students, recognize social issues, and identify with cultural issues to effectively develop training and degree programs that not only attract students, but also encourage student retention. Colleges have the ability to reduce or eliminate student barriers and subsequently prepare adults for the workforce.

20

CHAPTER III
RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

The research methodology used by the researchers will be presented in this section. The discussion will include the research design, population and sample,

locale of the study, instrument used to collect the data, procedures for conducting the research and analysis of data.

RESEARCH DESIGN This study is a non-experimental, descriptive study. Such a design provided an accurate portrayal of characteristics of a group by discovering a description of what characteristics exist and determining the frequency with which they exist. The goal is to examine relationships between variables. Descriptive research involves collecting numerical data to test hypotheses or answer questions concerning current status. The use of descriptive research was felt appropriate for this study because of the nature of the research instrument, a questionnaire. This descriptive study was designed to assess the effect of single parenthood on the academic performance of single-parent nursing students.

RESEARCH LOCALE This study was undertaken in the Lucena City campuses of the Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) and the Manuel S. enverga University

21 Foundation (MSEUF). The choice of this particular research localeswas due to the

fact that the researchers are student nurses in Lucena City, thus the proximity and accessibility of the respondents. Further, this study will primarily benefit CEFI and nursing schools in the city by contributing to the development of strategies that will address the unique needs of the emergent population on non-traditional students on campus.

SAMPLE AND SAMPLING PROCEDURE The 56 respondents of this study was selected and qualified from the total population of student nurses of Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc. (CEFI) and Manuel S. enverga University Foundation (MSEUF). Purposive sampling was used, as it is a method often employed when a researcher has knowledge of the universe and the sample. To the extent possible, an equivalent ratio of single-parent students and married students or students with live-in arrangements were asked to participate in this study so that comparisons can be made and conclusions drawn.

RESEARCH INSTRUMENT A self-devised questionnaire was the main tool of the study. The

questionnaire had three parts. Part I collected demographic information of the nurse such as age, gender, civil status, number of children, living arrangements, It was felt necessary to address these

educational level and grade point average.

issues to establish whether any of these demographic variables had any association with the academic performance of the respondents.

22 Part II investigated the self-rated perceptions of adequacy of respondents for the academic experience. Where appropriate, questions scored on a four-point Likert-type scale were presented to respondents, with the following values: 3.26 4.00 2.51 3.25 1.76 2.50 1.00 1.75 = = = = Very Prepared (VP) Prepared (P) Not Very Prepared (NVP) Not Prepared (NP)

Part III shall examine the perceptions of patients about their own academic performance. Where appropriate, questions scored on a four-point Likert-type scale shall be presented to respondents, with the following values: 3.26 4.00 2.51 3.25 1.76 2.50 1.00 1.75 = = = = Strongly Agree Agree Disagree Strongly Disagree

DATA GATHERING PROCEDURES The researcher first pilot-tested the instrument on five (5) student nurses who will not participate in this study. Pilot-testing is sought to assure readability and comprehension of the research instrument. After at least 56 potential respondents were selected and located, questionnaires were delivered to them personally, along with a verbal request for

23 their participation in the study while assuring that their responses would be treated in strict confidence.

STATISTICAL TREATMENT Data from the interviews were analyzed, using several statistical methods. Thus: 1. What is the demographic profile of the respondents in terms of: a) age b) gender c) civil status d) number of children e) living arrangements f) educational level g) grade point average Statistical Tool: Simple Percentage

P=

__ n

x 100

where P is the simple percentage

is the number of responses n is the total number of respondents

2. How adequately prepared perceive themselves to be?

for the college experience do the respondents

Statistical tools: frequency count and weighted arithmetic mean

24 Weighted Arithmetic Mean Wam = f w N Where wam is the weighted arithmetic mean

fw is the sum of the product of the frequency and the weight


n is the total number of respondents

5. What factors do respondents perceive affect their academic performance? Statistical tools: frequency count and weighted arithmetic mean Weighted Arithmetic Mean Wam = f w N Where wam is the weighted arithmetic mean

fw is the sum of the product of the frequency and the weight


n is the total number of respondents

6. Is there a significant difference in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile? Statistical tool: Pearsons Chi-Square Test

25 where: Oi = an observed frequency Ei = an expected (theoretical) frequency, asserted by the null hypothesis

7. Is there a significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile?

Statistical tool: Pearsons Chi-Square Test

where: Oi = an observed frequency Ei = an expected (theoretical) frequency, asserted by the null hypothesis

26

CHAPTER IV

PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF DATA


This chapter presents the results of the study and corresponding discussions. As is usually the case, it begins with the demographic profile of the respondents who participated in this study.

I. Demographic Profile of Respondents A total of fifty-six (56) respondents were selected for this study. Of this number, all returned the questionnaires given them, with satisfactorily complete answers. These 56 respondents, therefore, constituted the sample of the study. Table 1.1. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Age
Age Number Percentage

18 25 26 33 33 - 40 41 and above N=

35 14 6 1 56

62.5 25 10.71 1.79 100.00

The sample was relatively young. Of the 56 respondents, 35 or 62.50% were 18-25 years of age; 14 or 25% were 26-33 years old; six (6) or 10.71% were 33-40 years old; and only one (1) or 1.79% was 41 years old or older. These figures agree with a census-based population report in calendar year 2000 that observed that the current age structure of students reflects a relatively

27 young population, with the proportion or share of young persons (15 to 24 years old) to total population already at 31.3%. Table 1.2. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Gender Gender Male Female N= Number 12 44 56 Percentage 21.43 78.57 100.00

There are more females than male in this study. In terms of gender, 44 or 78.57% of respondents were female nursing students while 12 or 21.43% were males. These figures appear to support the National Statistics Offices report (NSO, 2004) that women outnumber men in certain fields of study, including health sciences (64%), business (67%), and engineering and technical (56%). Table 1.3. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Civil Status
Civil Status Married Single Separated/Marriage annulled Number 13 30 13 56 Percentage 23.21 53.57 23.21 100.00

N=

When grouped according to civil status, most or 33 of 56 respondents (or 58.93%) were single. Married respondents numbered 13, constituting 23.21% of the sample while those who claimed they were separated or that their marriages had been annulled also numbered 13 (23.21%).

28

Table 1.4. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Number of Children


Number of Children No. Of Respondents Percentage

None 1 2-3 4 or more N=

36 9 11 0 56

64.28% 16.07% 19.64% 0% 100%

In terms of number of children, the highest number of respondents were those who indicated they had no children (36 or 64.28%). This was followed by those who said they had two to three (2-3) children (11 or 19.64%). Nine (9) respondents, or 16.07%, declared they had one (1) child. None of the respondents indicated that they had four (4) or more children. Table 1.5. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Living Arrangements
Living Arrangements living with no other parent in the home living with husband/parentpartner living with parents or other family Number 7 14 35 56 Percentage 12.5% 25.0% 62.5% 100.00

N=

29 When grouped according to living arrangements, 35 or 62.5% of respondents indicated that they lived with their parents or other family, while 14 or 25.0% said they lived with their husband or other parent-partners. Seven (7) others said they lived with no other parents in the home.

Table 1.6. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Education Level of Education First Year Nursing Student Second Year Nursing Student Third Year Nursing Student Fourth Year Nursing Student Total Number 03 03 15 35 56 Percentage 5.35% 5.35% 26.79% 62.50% 100.00

In terms of level of nursing education, majority or 35 of 56 respondents (62.5%) said they were in fourth year; while 15 or 26.79% indicated they were in third year. Only three (3) or 5.35% of respondents said they were in second year and another three (3) or 5.35% indicated they were in first year (see Table 1.6). Table 1.7. Percentage Distribution of Respondents According to Grades Point Average GPA for Last Completed Semester (1-4 with 1 as the highest) 1.00 1.75 1.76 2.50 2.51 3.25 3.26 4.00 Total Number 5 19 26 6 56 Percentage 5.35% 33.93% 46.43% 10.71% 100.00

30

The respondents were asked to indicate thee grade point average (GPA) they obtained during the last semester that they completed within a scale of 1-4, with 1 being the highest. In terms of grade point average, majority or 26 of 56 respondents (46.43%) said they obtained a GPA of 2.51-3.25; while 19 or 33.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.76 2.50. Only six (6) or 10.71 % of respondents said they obtained a GPA of 3.26 4.00 and another five (5) or 8.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.00 1.75 (see Table 1.7).

II. Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience The respondents in this study were presented with 11 statements to help them assess their own degree of preparedness for a nursing education. The respondents were asked to respond to each statement and a continuous scale was used as a tool of analysis, where: 4 3 2 1 = = = = Very Prepared (VP) Prepared (P) Not Very Prepared (NVP) Not Prepared (NP)

Tables 2.1 on the succeeding page summarizes the responses of the single and married respondents. Table 2.2 summarizes the answers of those respondents who indicated that they were separated from their parents or that their marriages had been annulled.

31

Table 2.1. Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience (Single & Married Respondents)
SKILLS f
1. Financial resources for schooling 2. Adequate time for schooling 3. Network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling 4. Refreshed study skills 5. Self confidence 8. Interacting with mostly unmarried classmates 7. Emotional stability 8. Physical health 9. Have firmly established learning or career goals 10. Communication skills 3.26 4.00 2.51 3.25 1.76 2.50 1.00 1.75 = = = =

VP (4) WV 108 100 96 128 88 112 48 64 60 64 f 16 18 17 6 20 19 26 26 25 25

P (3) WV 48 54 51 18 60 57 78 78 75 75 0 0 2 0 1 1 5 2 3 2 f

NVP (2) WV 0 0 4 0 2 2 10 4 6 4 F 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

NP (1) WV 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Total

Mean

WV

QD

27 25 24 32 22 23 12 16 15 16

156 154 151 146 150 171 136 146 141 143

3.63 3.58 3.51 3.39 3.49 3.98 3.16 3.39 3.28 3.32

VP VP VP VP VP VP P VP VP VP

Very Prepared (VP) Prepared (P) Not Very Prepared (NVP) Not Prepared (NP)

As may be gleaned from Table 2.1, single and married nursing students in this study rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience in practically all indicators, the highest of which included skills

32 that allowed them to interact with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.98); financial resources for schooling (WM = 3.63); adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.58); network of moral and emotional support while schooling (WM = 3.51); and self confidence (WM = 3.49). In all these indicators, along with four (4) others, staff nurses considered themselves very prepared. The only self-rated skills indicators for which single and married nursing students indicated a lower degree of preparedness (or a rating of prepared), was in emotional stability (WM = 3.16). The self-rated lower degree of preparedness in emotional stability indicated by single and married respondents in this study is supported by Ely (2007) who has pointed out that social integration is very important because of the level of emotional stability of students, and since most of this socializing occurs in the context of the classroom, faculty play a crucial role in the process. In addition, active and collaborative learning approaches are highly valued. Table 2.2 Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience (Separated & Annulled Respondents)
SKILLS f
1. Financial resources for schooling 2. Adequate time for schooling 3. Network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling 4. Refreshed study skills 5. Self confidence 6. Interacting with mostly unmarried 9 8 4 4 8 7

VP (4) WV
36 32 16 16 32 28

P (3) F
4 4 7 7 4 5

NVP (2) f
0 1 2 2 1 1

NP (1) f
0 0 0 0 0 0

Total

Mean

WV

QD

WV
12 12 21 21 12 15

WV
0 2 4 4 2 2

WV
0 0 0 0 0 0 48 46 41 41 46 45 3.69 3.54 3.15 3.15 3.54 3.46 VP VP P P VP VP

33
classmates 7. Emotional stability 8. Physical health 9. Have firmly established learning or career goals 10. Communication skills 3.26 4.00 2.51 3.25 1.76 2.50 1.00 1.75 = = = =

7 4 4 10

28 16 16 40

5 7 7 3

15 21 21 9

1 2 2 0

2 4 4 0

0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0

43 41 41 49

3.31 3.15 3.15 3.77

VP P P VP

Very Prepared (VP) Prepared (P) Not Very Prepared (NVP) Not Prepared (NP)

Table 2.2 shows the degree of preparedness for the academic experience of respondents who indicated that they were separated or annulled. In this Table, we observe that separated or annulled students rated themselves very highly on the scale as well, indicating a rating of very prepared in a total of 6 out of 10 indicators. The areas which rated highest were communication skills (WM = 3.77); financial resources for schooling (WM = 3.69), self confidence (WM = 3.54);

adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.54); and interacting with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.46). The lowest ranked indicators (but still indicated nevertheless as knowledge factors for which separated and annulled students were prepared) were network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling, refreshed study skills, physical health and having firmly established learning or career goals (WM = 3.15 for each). The low rank indicated for network of moral and emotional support finds some support in literature. Coley (2000) says that among others, social isolation is a factor that places adult students at risk of giving up before program completion. Self confidence, refreshed study skills and interacting with mostly unmarried classmates were also identified by nurses in this study as an area for which they felt

34 less prepared. The evidence from other studies indicate that adult students may have adjustment difficulties when they return to an educational setting. "Adult students are intimidated upon initial return to college" (Carlin, 2001 p. 10). They may worry about not competing well with traditional age students, have perceptions of inadequate study skills, or have concerns about fitting in with younger students in class.

III. Academic Performance As a method of determining academic performance, the researcher used 10 declarative statements on a Likert-like scale (see Table 3.1). Table 3.1. Indicators of Academic Performance

35
Factors f1 7 SA (4) f2 5 wv 48 A (3) f1 f2 22 4 wv 78 f1 11 D (2) f2 4 wv 30 f1 3 SD (1) f2 0 wv 3 Total wv 159 mean QD

1.

All in all, I have received good grades in my subjects. I have been able to attend my classes regularly I have enough time for study, after classes. Generally speaking, I have been able to comply with projects, assignments and other academic requirements on time I have been able to participate in extracurricular activities organized by the school I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class I feel that I fit in with other students in the class and in the entire college I feel that I am more quick to learn than others I perceive no difference between the academic performance of traditional students and non-traditional single parent students 10. I have no difficulty managing my time and priorities
= = = =

2.84

2. 3. 4.

1 0 7 7

5 0 0

60 28 28

27 16 16

4 5 5

93 63 63

6 18 18

4 8 8

20 52 52

0 2 2

0 0 0

0 2 2

173 145 145

3.09 2.59 2.59

A A A

5.

24

11

39

17

44

15

122

2.18

6.

24

11

39

17

44

15

122

2.18

7.

44

26

93

24

163

2.91

8.

6 1 1

0 5

24 64

14 24

2 8

39 96

17 8

5 0

44 16

9 0

6 0

15 0

122 176

2.18 3.14

D A

9.

1 0

56

28

10 2

16

174

3.11

3.26 4.00 2.51 3.25 1.76 2.50 1.00 1.75

Strongly Agree (SA) Agree (A) Disagree (D) Strongly Disagree (SD)

The respondents were asked to respond to each statement and a continuous scale was used as a tool of analysis, where: 4 = Strongly Agree; 3 = Agree; 2 = Disagree; and.1= Strongly Disagree.

36 Respondents expressed the highest degree of agreement to statement # 9, I perceive no difference between the academic performance of traditional students and non-traditional single parent students (WM = 3.14). In literature, this is supported by Strage (2000) who argues that relatively little is known and much is assumed about differences in college students' experience and success as a function of their age, the route they travel to arrive at the university, and their general experience with college. As this study has shown, contrary to popular assumptions, students perceive no real differences between and among regular and non-traditional students. A high degree of agreement was also expressed to statement #10, I have no difficulty managing my time and priorities (WM = 3.11); and to statement #2, I have been able to attend my classes regularly (WM = 3.09). The barriers that such time management poses challenges to non-traditional students is well supported by literature. Competing demands for time and attention

may place adult students at a disadvantage in completing their degrees (Jacobs and King, 2002). However, students in this study seem to disagree with this notion by indicating that they have no problems attending class regularly nor with managing their time and priorities. Respondents likewise expressed agreement that Generally speaking, I have been able to comply with projects, assignments and other academic requirements on time; and that All in all, I have received good grades in my subjects. While some studies indicate that non-traditional students face barriers to retention and learning, Bauman et al., 2004 suggests that evidence offered thus far is

37 non-conclusive. Thus, it is important to investigate the link between circumstances of nontraditional students thought to be associated with difficulties in an academic setting and actual use of services that may address problems of older students. Respondents expressed disagreement to only three (3) statements presented to them, that: I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school, I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others. These disagreement expressed to the statement I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school, finds support in literature. According to Fairchild (2003), institutional barriers impede non-traditional students' participation. These barriers may include inconvenient class times and office hours, inadequate career planning for adults, and a lack of opportunities for campus involvement that accommodate interests and needs of nontraditional students (Fairchild, 2003). Disagreement expressed to the statements I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others indicated that students, whether regular or non traditional, do not feel superior to other students.

IV. Null Hypotheses Testing T-Tests for Independent Samples were performed to examine the studys null hypotheses. These tests measured how closely the researcher's hypotheses matched the observations collected during the study.

38 The first hypothesis of this study is: There is no significant difference in the

self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile. Table 4-1. T-Test Results for Finding the Significant Difference Between Demographic Characteristics and Adequacy of Preparedness for Academic Experience
VARIABLES Age 18 -25 & 26-33 18-25 & 33-40 18-25 & 41 and above 26-33 & 18-25 26-33 & 33-40 26-33 & 41 and above Civil Status Single & Married and Separated/Annulled Nursing Year Level First Year & 4th Second Year & 4th Third Year & 4th Fourth Year & 2nd Gender Male & Female df 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 X1 3.49 3.49 3.49 3.17 3.17 3.34 3.49 X2 3.17 3.34 3.63 3.31 3.63 3.63 3.43 Computed t-value 4.88 1.47 1.01 1.32 3.38 1.83 0.92 Critical t-value 2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042 Decision Reject Ho Accept Ho Accept Ho Accept Ho Reject Ho Accept Ho Accept Ho Impression at 0.05 Level Significant Not Significant Not Significant Not Significant Significant Not Significant Not Significant

30 30 30 30 30

3.38 3.38 3.61 3.61 3.48

3.61 3.04 3.04 3.04 3.44

3.72 3.21 5.5 5.5 0.55

2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042 2.042

Reject Ho Reject Ho Reject Ho Reject Ho Accept Ho

Significant Significant Significant Significant Not Significant

(Note: These refer to the declarative statements in Tables 2.1 to 2.2) Significance is at .05 or more. The results, as seen in Table 4.1., indicate that there was a significant difference in perceptions about adequacy of preparedness for decision making among age groups, particularly between those in the 18-25 year-old bracket and 26-30 yearold bracket (p = 4.88). The same significant differences were prevalent when the respondents were grouped according to year level in nursing (p = 3.72, for instance, between registered first year and fourth year students).

39 Based on the above findings, Hypotheses #1 was rejected. The second null hypothesis of this study is: There is no significant difference in academic performance when respondents are grouped according to their demographic profile. T-tests for independent samples were performed to examine the relation between the assessment made about adequacy of preparedness for the academic experience, and whether the respondents separated/annulled. Table 4-3. T-tests on Finding the Significant Difference Between the Assessment Made by Married & Single and Separated/Annulled Students Variables Compared Df Mean Compute d t-value Critical t-value Decision Impression at 0.05 Level Significant were single and married or

Assessment of single and married 22 X1 = 3.38 students versus X2 = 3.16 separated/ annulled Significance is at .05 or more.

3.62

2.074

Reject H0

There was a significant difference between these variables. The assessments made by single and married students versus separated/annulled (p = 3.62), and knowledge, and attitudes and qualities (p = 4.88), bore significant differences . Thus, the second null hypothesis was also rejected. Table 4.3 shows details of how the test on the second null hypothesis was conducted.

40

CHAPTER V

SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

41 This chapter discusses the summary, conclusions and recommendations of the study based on data collected by the researcher from a sample of 56 nursing students in Lucena City who served as the studys respondents. This study sought to assess adequacy in preparedness for the academic experience among students as well as the impact of such perceptions about adequacy on the academic performance. Differences between single and married students

(considered traditional in this study) and separated or annulled (considered nontraditional) were given focus.

Summary of Findings 1. Demographic Characteristics of Respondents 1.1. study. 1.2. The sample was relatively young. Of the 56 respondents, 35 or A total of Fifty-Six (56) respondents were selected for this

62.50% were 18-25 years of age; 14 or 25% were 26-33 years old; six (6) or 10.71% were 33-40 years old; and only one (1) or 1.79% was 41 years old or older. 1.3. There are more females than male in this study. In terms of

gender, 44 or 78.57% of respondents were female nursing students while 12 or 21.43% were males. 1.4. When grouped according to civil status, most or 33 of 56

respondents (or 58.93%) were single. Married respondents numbered 13, constituting 23.21% of the sample while those who claimed they

42 were separated or that their marriages had been annulled also

numbered 13 (23.21%). 1.5. In terms of number of children, the highest number of

respondents were those who indicated they had no children (36 or 64.28%). This was followed by those who said they had two to three (2-3) children (11 or 19.64%). Nine (9) respondents, or 16.07%, declared they had one (1) child. None of the respondents indicated

that they had four (4) or more children. 1.6. When grouped according to living arrangements, 35 or 62.5%

of respondents indicated that they lived with their parents or other family, while 14 or 25.0% said they lived with their husband or other parent-partners. Seven (7) others said they lived with no other parents in the home. 1.7. In terms of level of nursing education, majority or 35 of 56 while 15 or

respondents (62.5%) said they were in fourth year;

26.79% indicated they were in third year. Only three (3) or 5.35% of respondents said they were in second year and another three (3) or 5.35% indicated they were in first year. 1.8. In terms of grade point average, majority or 26 of 56

respondents (46.43%) said they obtained a GPA of 2.51-3.25; while 19 or 33.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.76 2.50. Only six (6) or 10.71 % of respondents said they obtained a GPA of 3.26 4.00

43 and another five (5) or 8.93% indicated they obtained a GPA of 1.00 1.75 2. Adequacy of Preparedness for Academic Experience 2.1. Single and married nursing students in this study rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience in practically all indicators, the highest of which included skills that allowed them to interact with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.98); financial resources for schooling (WM = 3.63); adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.58); network of moral and emotional support while schooling (WM = 3.51); and self confidence (WM = 3.49). In all these indicators, along with four (4) others, staff nurses considered themselves very prepared. 2.2. The only self-rated skills indicators for which single and married nursing students indicated a lower degree of preparedness (or a rating of prepared), was in emotional stability (WM = 3.16). 2.3 Separated or annulled students rated themselves very highly on the scale as well, indicating a rating of very prepared in a total of 6 out of 10 indicators, namely: communication skills (WM = 3.77); financial

resources for schooling (WM = 3.69), self confidence (WM = 3.54); adequate time for schooling (WM = 3.54); and interacting with mostly unmarried classmates (WM = 3.46). 2.4. The lowest ranked indicators (but still indicated nevertheless as knowledge factors for which separated and annulled students were

44 prepared) were network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling, refreshed study skills, physical health and having firmly established learning or career goals (WM = 3.15 for each). 3. Academic Performance 3.1. Respondents expressed the highest degree of agreement to statement # 9, I perceive no difference between the academic performance of traditional students and non-traditional single parent students (WM = 3.14). 3.2. A high degree of agreement was also expressed to statement #10, I have no difficulty managing my time and priorities (WM = 3.11); and to statement #2, I have been able to attend my classes regularly (WM = 3.09). 3.3. Respondents likewise expressed agreement that Generally speaking, I have been able to comply with projects, assignments and other academic requirements on time; and that All in all, I have received good grades in my subjects. 3.4. Respondents expressed disagreement to only three (3) statements

presented to them, that:

I have been able to participate in extraI believe I have

curricular activities organized by the school,

performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others. 4. Hypotheses Testing

45 4.1. Significant differences were found in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience, when respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile. 4.2. Significant differences were found in academic performance when respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile.

Conclusions From the summary of findings, the researcher has arrived at the following primary conclusions. 1. Single and married (traditional) students in this study rated themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience. 2. Separated or annulled (non-traditional) students in this study also rated

themselves very highly in terms of degree of preparedness for the academic experience. 3. High rating notwithstanding, the single and married (traditional) students in this study indicated a lower degree of preparedness (or a rating of prepared), in emotional stability 4. Separated or annulled (non-traditional) students in this study also

collectively identified lower-rated areas (for which a rating of prepared was given). These included: network of moral and emotional support

while I am schooling, refreshed study skills, physical health and having firmly established learning or career goals

46 5. Respondents in this study agreed that they had excellent academic performance in almost all indicators. The only statements to which they expressed disagreement in this regard were: I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school, I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class and I feel that I am more quick to learn than others. 6. All in all, significant differences were found in the self-perceived adequacy of preparedness for the college experience and in academic performance, when respondents were grouped according to their demographic profile, but this were in regard to age and year level in nursing. Marital status did not seem to play a significant role in the difference in perceptions.

Recommendations: Based on the findings and conclusions of this study, the researcher submits the following recommendations: 3. Although research on single parents as non-traditional students has proliferated in the past decade, findings addressing the relationship between single parenthood and academic performance have been inconclusive. Our research supports this observation. Single parenthood was not correlated to a student's performance. Thus further research is recommended, with a larger sample size and a more refined research tool. 4. Other frequently cited factors influencing academic achievement are maturity and life experiences This research suggests that older students have acquired

47 some adaptive skills, in both behavior and judgment, that reduce the chance of poorer grades. These skills, being positively correlated to motivational and cognitive abilities, tend to be linked positively with age. The researcher, therefore, recommend that educators consider adopting an expanded method of cooperative learning involving older students who act as models of maturity, confidence, and rational thinking in small group instructional activities.

Implications of this Study One of the primary implications for instruction is the expanded use of cooperative learning. This method of instruction, using peer tutoring and group activities, enhances interactive social skills as well as comprehension of subject matter. Nelson, and Skon (2005) found cooperative learning to be more academically beneficial than traditional learning techniques. Further research by Soldier (2007) reports that cooperative learning helps students to accept differences among themselves, helps them to develop more positive attitudes toward school, and promotes the idea that students have greater control over their lives in school. Vertical grouping is an example of an expanded method of cooperative learning involving older students who act as models of maturity, confidence, and rational thinking in small group instructional activities. Older, nontraditional students serve a leadership function in addition to possible tutoring roles. Traditional collegeage students benefit from vertical grouping by being exposed to more mature levels of cognitive interaction and to the older students' increased experience with effective

48 coping strategies. In return, older students will likely appreciate the recognition and the opportunity to display their advanced maturity and their more experienced social and personal skills. In fact, they learn by teaching. The literature and current research concerning student age provides educational institutions with information about achievement differences among traditional and nontraditional groups. This information provides higher education an underused educational tool to assist with the development of its traditional students. As education increases the dimensions of its mission, the nontraditional student is an overlooked, often untapped, resource.

49 BIBLIOGRAPHY

BOOKS Coley, R. J. (2000). The American community college turns 100: A look at its students, programs, and prospects. Princeton, NJ: Educational Testing Service, Policy Information Center. Fairchild, E. (2003) Multiple roles of adult learners. In D. Kilgore and P. Rice (Eds.), Meeting the special needs of adult student, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Pp. 11-16. Raisman, N. (2002). Embrace the oxymoron: Customer service in higher education. Horsham, PA: LRP Publications. Schunk, D.H., (2001) "Learning Theories: An Educational Perspective", Prentice Hall. Tinto, V. (2003) Leaving college: Rethinking the causes and cures of student attrition. Chicago, IL: Chicago University Press. Weidman, J. (2000) The world of higher education: A socialization-theoretical perspective. In K. Hurrelmann & U. Engel (Eds.) The social world of adolescents: International perspectives. (pp. 87-105). New York: De Gruyter.

PERIODICALS/PAPERS Bauer, D., & Mott, D. (2000). Life themes and motivations of re-entry students. Journal of Counseling and Development, 68, 555-560. Bauman, S., Wang, N., DeLeon, C., Kafentzis, J., Zavala-Lopez, M., & Lindsey, M. (2004) Nontraditional students' service needs and social support resources: a pilot study. Journal of College Counseling, 7, 13-17. Beaumont-Walters, Yvonne and Kola Soyibo (1998). An Analysis of High School Students' Performance on Five Integrated Science Process Skills Research in Science & Technical Education, Volume 19, Number 2. Benshoff, J. M. (2001). Nontraditional college students: A developmental look at the needs of women and men returning to school. Journal of Young Adulthood and Middle Age, 3, 47-61.

50 Bowl, C. (2000). Adult leaning in America: Why and how adults go back to school. New York: The College Board. Bundy, A. & Smith, T. (2004) Introduction to the special section--breaking with tradition: effective counseling services for nontraditional students. Journal of College Counseling, 7, 3-4. Carlin, P. (2001) Adult students and community college beginnings: examining the efficacy of performance on a university campus. College Student Journal, 35, 169-182. Carney-Crompton, S., &. Tan, J. (2002). Support systems, psychological functioning, and academic performance of nontraditional female students. Adult Education Quarterly, 52(2), 140-154. Clayton, D. E., & Smith, M. M. (2007). Motivational typology of reentry women. Adult Education Quarterly, 37, 90-104. Cross, K. P. (2000). Our changing students and their impact on colleges: Prospects for a true learning society. Phi Delta Kappan, May, 630-632. Donaldson, J. F., &. Graham, S. (2008). A model of college outcomes for adults. Adult Education Quarterly, 50, 24-40. Dweck, C.S., & Leggett E.L. (2008). A social-cognitive approach to motivation and personality. Psychological Review, 95 256-273. Endler, N.S., & Parker, J.D.A. (1990a). The multi-dimensional assessment of coping: a critical evaluation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 42 207-220. Ely, E.E. (2007). The non-traditional student. Paper presented at the American Association of Community Colleges annual conference, Anaheim, CA. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED411906). Eppler, M.A., & Harju, B.A. (2007). Achievement motivation goals in relation to academic performance in traditional and nontraditional college students. Research in Higher Education, 38 (5), 557-573. Hansen, Joe B. (2000) Student Performance and Student Growth as measure of success: A evaluators perspective. Paper presented at annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, Louisiana, April 25, 2000 Hooper, J. O. (2009). Returning women students and their families: Support and conflict. Journal of College Student Personnel, 20, 145-152. Hoyt, J. (2002) Remedial education and student attrition. Community College Review 27 (2), 51 - 71.

51 Jalomo, R. J. (2000). Assessing minority student performance. New Directions for Community Colleges, 112, 7-17. Mercer, D. (2003) Older coeds: predicting who will stay this time. Journal of Research and Development in Education, 26, 153-163. Muench, K. E. (2007, October). A comparative study of the psychosocial needs of adult men and women students in an adult degree program. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Adult and Continuing Education, Washington, DC. National Center for Education Statistics (2008). Descriptive summary of 2005-06 beginning postsecondary students. Washington, D.C.: Kojaku, L.K., Nunez, A.M., & Malizio, A.G. Roedel, T.D.; Schraw, G., & Plake, B.S. (2004). Validation of a measure of learning and performance goal orientations. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 54 (4), 1013-1021. Sibal, Jorge V., Maragtas S.V. Amante and Ma. Catalina Tolentino, Globalization and Changes in Work & Employment Conditions in the Philippines, 2002. Strage, A. (2000). Predictors of college adjustment and success: Similarities and differences among Southeast-Asian, Hispanic and White students. Education, 120, 731-740. Terrell, P. S. (2000). Adapting institutions of higher ed to serve adult students' needs. NASPA Journal, 27, 241-247. Thon, A. J. (2004). Responding to the non-academic needs of adult students. NASPA Journal, 21, 28-34. Ursua, Alvin (2009). My Baby and Me, Cougar, Volume 11, ISSN-2. Calayan Educational Foundation, Inc., Lucena City.

ELECTRONIC PUBLICATIONS Callister, Paul and Burks, Stuart (2006) "Two Parents, Two Households: New Zealand data collection, language and complex parenting" Family Commission. Retrieved from http://www.nzfamilies.org.nz/files/blueskies-callister.pdf.

52 Millar, Jane and Ridge, Tess (2001)"Families, Poverty, Work and Care: A review of literature on lone parents and low income couple families" (DWP Research Report No.153. Retrieved from http://www.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd5/153summ.asp.

53

Annex A: Letter to Respondents Bachelor of Science in Nursing CALAYAN EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION, INC. (CEFI) Lucena City

Dear Respondent, In relation to our thesis requirements, we are conducting a study entitled, THE SINGLE PARENT AS A NON-TRADITIONAL NURSING STUDENT: EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE. May we invite you as one of our respondents inasmuch as we believe that you can answer the questions provided in the survey. Your candid answers will contribute meaningfully to the completion of this study. Rest assured that your responses will be treated with utmost confidentiality. Thank you very much. Yours truly, MARIA AMELIE S. RICAFORT JULIE ANN PRODIGO WINCHELL PIANA

54 Annex B: Research Instrument


THE SINGLE PARENT AS A NON-TRADITIONAL NURSING STUDENT: EFFECTS OF SINGLE PARENTHOOD ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

Thank you very much for participating voluntarily in this study. Please be assured that your responses will be kept strictly confidential. I. Demographic Information Age: 18 25 years old 26 33 years old 33 - 40 years old 41 years old and above Gender: Civil Status: Male Female Single none one child 2-3 children 4 children or more Living Arrangements: living with no other parent in the home living with husband/parent-partner living with parents or other family Level of Education: First Year Nursing Student Second Year Nursing Student Third Year Nursing Student Fourth Year Nursing Student Grade Point Average During the Last Completed Semester (please indicate in values between 1-4, with one being the highest): ___________________________ II. Adequacy of Preparedness for the Academic Experience Please respond to the following checklist of skills by checking the appropriate column, where: Separated/Marriage Annulled

Married

Number of Children:

55 4 3 2 1 = = = = Very Prepared (VP) Prepared (P) Not Very Prepared (NVP) Not Prepared (NP)

To what degree are you prepared for the academic experience or for a nursing education in terms of the following indicators? INDICATORS
1. Financial resources for schooling 2. Adequate time for schooling 3. Network of moral and emotional support while I am schooling 4. Refreshed study skills 5. Self confidence 6. Interacting with mostly unmarried classmates 7. Emotional stability 8. Physical health 9. Have firmly established learning or career goals 10. Communication skills

Degree of Preparation VP P NVP NP (4) (3) (2) (1)

III. Academic Performance Please indicate whether you agree to the following affirmative statements about your performance in school as a nursing student, where: 4 3 2 1 = = = = Strongly Agree Agree Disagree Strongly Disagree
SA A D SD

SELF-RATED ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE


1. All in all, I have received good grades in my subjects. 2. I have been able to attend my classes regularly 3. I have enough time for study, after classes. 4. Generally speaking, I have been able to comply with projects, assignments and other academic requirements on time 5. I have been able to participate in extra-curricular activities organized by the school 6. I believe I have performed better in academics than most students in my class

56 7. I feel that I fit in with other students in the class


and in the entire college

8. I feel that I am more quick to learn than others 9. I perceive no difference between the academic
performance of traditional students and nontraditional single parent students 10. I have no difficulty managing my time and priorities

Thank you very much!

57

Annex C: Curriculum Vitae of the Researchers PERSONAL DATA NAME: ADDRESS: DATE OF BIRTH: PLACE OF BIRTH: NAME OF FATHER: NAME OF MOTHER: CIVIL STATUS: Maria Amelie S. Ricafort 34 Riverside Subd., Red V. Lucena City January 19, 1975 Lucena City Magno P. Ricafort Felipa Nery S. Ricafort Single

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND TERTIARY: Calayan Educational Foundation Inc. 2005-2009 New York University 1991-1993

SECONDARY: Interlake High School 1991

ELEMENTARY: Sacred Heart College

ORGANIZATIONAL INVOLVEMENT Red Cross 2008-2009 SNAQP 2007-2009 DUKHA, CEFI 2006

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