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Calidad en la educación

On-line version ISSN 0718-4565


BLANCO, Christian; MENESES, Francisco  and  PAREDES, Ricardo. Beyond dropouts: academic trajectories in higher education in Chile. Calidad en la educación [online]. 2018, n.49, pp.137-187. ISSN 0718-4565.

This research addresses the dynamics of graduation, retention, desertion and readmission in higher education in Chile, from 2007 to 2015. Characteristics and behavior patterns appeared, differentiated by the distinct trajectories. This study confrms previous findings on desertion and graduation and offers the unprecedented contribution of exploring academic trajectories of readmitted students. We present descriptive statistics and multinomial logistic regression models to evaluate the influence of socioeconomic and educational factors on the diverse trajectories in higher education. We observe that about half of college dropouts re-enter the higher education system, and we note high rates of graduation among readmitted students. Moreover, over half of readmitted students change their area of study. These results indicate that the inclusion of readmittance as a possible academic trajectory, challenges the idea that desertion equates to “academic failure”, and thus requires greater complexity in the theoretical and methodological frameworks on desertion, to revisit the mismatch hypothesis and an increased recognition of the importance of information, career orientation, and to refect on how public policies address desertion in higher education.

Keywords : academic trajectories; attrition; dropout; graduation; higher education; retention; persistence; readmission..

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