ATTRIBUTES AND CHARACTERISTICS OF CONTEMPORARY HIGHER EDUCATION STUDENTS
Students attending universities throughout the United States are classified in many different ways and for many different purposes. The following discussion uses a classification of categories based upon several key demographic variables. The overwhelming majority of students enter universities immediately following secondary education programs.
They are most often referred to as traditional students or students at the developmental stage of late adolescence. Another critical mass of students is characterized as “non traditional” or” mature learners.” This group of students is typically made up of individuals who have elected to seek higher education degrees following post secondary full-time employment and, for the most part, individuals who have delayed higher education to rear families. This group presents a diverse chronological age range from mid -twenties to mid- forties.
Within the categories of traditional/late adolescence students and non-traditional students are several distinct classifications of students that have become increasingly more prominent in higher education. These students are characterized as culturally and linguistically diverse and sensorily and cognitively disabled.