More Student Trends…

Here’s some more trends from our friends at Ivy Jungle

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Video Games and Behavior: A new study has shown a correlation between college students who play video games and several undesirable behaviors such as drinking and drug use. The study, published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, showed that most men played video games at least weekly. Women did not play much. Of all who did play, regardless of gender, the study showed a correspondence to higher use of alcohol, drugs, and to poor quality relationships with family and friends. Men who played violent video games showed a greater tendency to violent acts as well. The author of the study would not state the relationship as causal, but sees warrant for listing video games as a risk factor for young adult development. (LA Times January 27, 2009)

Dropping Out for Video Games? FCC Commissioner, Deborah Tate has drawn attention after stating, “One of the top reasons for college drop-outs in the US is online gaming addiction.” Tate made the statement in a speech in December, citing the 11 million people who now play World of Witchcraft. Video game makers have objected to her statement and continue to push for a source to back up her claim. (Wired December 11, 2008

College Degrees Mean Fewer Lay-offs: Not only do college graduates earn more than those who did not complete a degree, but they are less likely to lose their jobs. While the national unemployment rate hit 7.2% in December, the rate for those with a college degree was only 3.7%. However, that number is expected to surpass the historic all time high of 3.9% achieved in 1983. (AP January 11, 2009)

Colleges and Credit Card Debt: Most college students are inundated with credit card offers as soon as the set foot on campus. More than 700 schools have contracts with major banks to provide credit cards with logos and other branded promotional tie-ins. The schools make millions of dollars in these deals and the banks receive hundreds of thousands of names and addresses of potential customers. However, as consumer debt has skyrocketed a number of consumer groups are challenging the ethics of such a relationship between the school and the banks. The average college graduate who carries a balance owes more than $2500 to the card companies – an amount that exceeds the stated introductory limit for college students. (New York Times January 1, 2009)

The Real Story of Virginity Pledges: A number of news outlets have reported on the ineffectiveness of virginity pledges (see CMU July 05). The stories are based on research by Janet Elise Rosenbaum of Johns Hopkins University. However, many neglect to state that her findings showed that those who make virginity pledges have sex at the same rate as their peers – who share their conservative, religious views, but did not take the pledge. The study was published in the January 1 edition of the journal Pediatrics. Dr. Bernadine Healy, former heat of the Red Cross noticed the inconsistency in reporting. In fact, teens who took the pledge were much less risky than the overall teenage population. 25% of pledge takers remain chaste until marriage. Most do not lose their virginity until age 21 or later. Overall they had less sex and less risky sexual behavior than the general population. (WJS.com January 6, 2009)

Churches More Diverse: US congregations have become more diverse over the last 10 years. The number of churches stating no minority participants dropped from 20% in 1998 to just 14% in 2008. More than 1/3 of churches report the presence of black congregants and nearly as many report Hispanic participation. In addition, the use of drums in worship jumped by 70% during that time. High energy worship services tend to correlate with more diverse congregations. (USA Today December 21, 2008

Leaving the Church: According to some reports, 3 out of every 5 teens in a typical church will walk away from the church in the next 10-15 years (Enrichment Journal 10/08 as reported in the January 2009 Mission America Coalition Update)

Choosing a Religion: Historically, most people born in the US would have been “Christian.” However, a recent study by the Barna group indicates that half of all adults now see Christianity one of several options that Americans can choose from when it comes to identifying with a faith. Overall, half said that Christianity was no longer the faith that Americans automatically accept as their personal faith. An even higher percentage (64%) of evangelicals believes that Christianity is no longer the default faith. At the same time, almost ¾ of all Americans say their faith is becoming even more important to them as a guide for making moral choices. (Barna.org January 12, 2009)

Spiritual Generation: According to a Lifeway report, 82% of twenty-something’s believe a person’s spirit exists in an afterlife following death. Only 69% of thirty-something’s believe so. (Mission America Coalition Update January 2009)

Remedial Courses: A study in Colorado indicates as many as 30% of incoming college students require remedial courses in math, reading, and writing. Education experts fear that too much time spent addressing remedial classes will discourage students from continuing their education (December 28, 2008

Co-ed Dorm Rooms: The University of Chicago has joined the ranks of schools offering college housing allowing male and female students to share the same room. The school says it discourages romantically involved couples from rooming together. Freshmen are not allowed to participate in the program. (KSPR News December 22, 2008

Fake Facebook Groups: College Prowler, a publisher of college guide books, has come under scrutiny for reportedly founding dozens of “Class of 2013” Facebook groups for different schools. Many high school seniors join a Facebook group and begin getting to know their classmates long before they set foot on campus. A Butler University admissions officer discovered that one person had begun dozens of such groups across the country and became suspicious. The internet response was swift, with many group administrators dropping out and blogs and twitter abuzz about the practice. College Prowler has confessed and apologized for a viral marketing tactic that went too far. (Inside Higher Ed December 22, 2009)

Ben Stein Not Speaking: Graduates from the University of Vermont will no longer have economist, author, actor Ben Stein as their commencement speaker. Stein withdrew from the role after controversy surrounded his selection. Stein had given a well received lecture series on campus previously. However, students and faculty objected to his outspoken critique of evolutionary theory, particularly in the movie Expelled. (Inside Higher Ed February 4, 2009)

Freshmen Looking for Funds: Financial aid plays a significant role for many students selecting college. This year a record 43% of freshmen stated that their financial aid offer was a “very important” or “essential” factor in their school choice. Nearly 70% report receiving some financial aid through grants and scholarships. Even as more students receive financial aid packages, the number taking loans has not decreased. Most students rely on a combination of sources and almost half (49.4%) plan to get jobs while in school in order to make ends meet. (Inside Higher Ed January 22, 2009)

The Growing Tuition Bubble: For years, people have expressed concern about the rising cost of college tuition. People see college as more important than ever, with 55% believing a degree is necessary to “be successful in today’s world” – up from just 31% in 2000. However, most people (63%) believe college prices are rising faster than other things. 35% believe college tuition costs outpace healthcare. And two-thirds believe students are forced to borrow too much money to attend college. Almost a quarter of respondents strongly disagreed that almost everyone can get financial aid if they need it. In addition, 52% said that colleges are more like businesses concerned about the bottom line. Only 42% said colleges are mainly focused on a quality educational experience. (Inside Higher Ed Feb 4, 2009)

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~ by Shea Sumlin on February 10, 2009.

3 Responses to “More Student Trends…”

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