Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


College of Human Sciences and Education

Document Type



The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore the perceptions of first-year students who experienced intrusive advising and retention initiatives in the College of Agriculture at Louisiana State University (LSU). Research participants consisted of 20 first-year students enrolled in the college in the fall of 2018. One-on-one, face-to-face interviews with first-year students were conducted to gain insight and understand student experiences with intrusive advising and retention initiatives within the College of Agriculture. College student retention and factors that contribute to understanding retention have been extensively studied (Astin, 1993; Braxton, Hirschy, & McClendon, 2004; Habley, Bloom, & Robbins, 2012; Kuh, Schuh, Whitt, & Kinzie, 2010; Tinto, 2012), but researchers have found few solutions to address this unique and detrimental problem. For land-grant colleges of agriculture, not only is recruitment consistently a challenge (Dyer & Breja, 2003), but retention of those agriculture students becomes an even more crucial issue to address. The results of this study suggest that the environment created within the LSU College of Agriculture reflects the tenets of Tinto’s model of institutional action (2012). As perceived by the students, expectations to succeed and ask for help were established by the college. Students described their first-year experience as one filled with support from faculty and staff. The intrusive advising assessment was positively received by students and provided additional direction of how to provide support to address student needs. Students were encouraged to get involved and provided with many opportunities to develop social and professional networks, which from their perception, made their first-year experience different from that of their peers outside of the college.



Committee Chair

Blanchard, Joy