Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Michael F. Burnett

Second Advisor

Vincent F. Kuetemeyer


The purpose of this study is to identify and describe selected perceptual, academic, and personal demographic characteristics of transfer students that transfer from four-year to four-year institutions to facilitate implementation of policies, intervention procedures for retention, and recruitment. The population was students currently enrolled in one public funded, Carnegie Class Masters-II, four-year university in the southern region of the United States who have transferred from another four-year institution within the previous year. Data for the study was collected as part of a two-stage process, and includes both primary and secondary information. Primary data collection was the information provided by the respondents to the questions listed on the Transfer Student Survey. Secondary data was obtained from the official records of the university student information system and served as a source for verification of academic and demographic information. The demographic findings described the respondents as 69.2% female; a majority were single (55.8%); had a sophomore classification status; a reported educational level of fathers was 51.2% with no college; expected to earn a bachelor or post graduate degree in their lifetime (75%); had little or no campus involvement; and had an annual income of less than $19,999. The respondents perceived "Quality of Instruction" the most important factor a university could provide and "Quality of Academic Programs" at the highest perceived rated educational service provided by their prior and current institution. Discriminant analysis was used to identify a model that explained 19.4% of the variance of the factors affecting whether a student will transfer. In addition, the model correctly classified 80.8% of the cases. The researcher recommended that student development professionals, administrations, and state agencies enhance their effort to better understand the perceived "quality" of instruction and academic programs. It is recommended that the admission application serve as an identification tool for targeting potential transfer students for intervention purposes. Further research is recommended to replicate and expand this study to include testing of the classification model. And finally, further research is recommended to determine whether these finds are generalizable to other college/university settings.