2004 College Student Inventory of Retention Management System
Executive Summary:

Jean Chen
Carmen Williams
Office of Institutional Research

April 18, 2005

The College Student Inventory (CSI) of the Noel-Levitz Retention Management System is a measurement tool that asks students to reflect on academic, personal, and social experiences and perspectives. The University of North Dakota administered the CSI Form B to incoming freshmen during the summer orientation since 2002 for three consecutive years. The overall number of freshmen who participated in this survey have been: 1,722 in 2002, 1,998 in 2003, and 1,687 in 2004. Freshmen provide their cognitive and affective attrition indicators through the survey. There are three CSI reports produced by Noel-Levitz. The first report is for each individual student, second for each student’s academic advisor, and, the third is an overall institutional report.

CSI contains 100 Likert-type items. Each item uses a Likert scale of 1 to 7 with 1 equaling “Not At All True” and with 7 meaning “Completely True”. Principal component factor extraction with Varimax rotations was used to simplify the resulting factor structures along with maximizing the loadings. In order to be accepted in the rotated matrix, each factor required an eigenvalue greater than one for the determination of the common factors. This process yielded seventeen orthogonal factors. Factor scores were generated for these 17 variables and were converted to a standard score with a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10. Student responses to these items are therefore summarized within 17 different scales. To check the internal consistency and to determine the reliability of the 100 items as a group and each of the subscales, Cronbach’s alpha was calculated. The scales include: 1) Study Habits, 2) Intellectual Interests, 3) Verbal Confidence, 4) Math and Science Confidence, 5) Desire to Finish College, 6) Attitude Toward Educators, 7) Sociability, 8) Family Emotional Support, 9) Opinion Tolerance, 10) Career Closure, 11) Sense of Financial Security, 12) Academic Assistance (receptivity), 13) Personal Counseling (receptivity), 14) Social Enrichment (receptivity), 15) Career Counseling (receptivity), 16) Financial Guidance (receptivity), and 17) Internal Validity.

These 17 factors are then organized generally under three categories: Academic Motivation, General Coping Skills, and Receptivity to Support Services. The CSI also weighs the above scales to construct four compound scales, each designed to summarize any given student’s Academic Motivation: 1) Dropout Proneness, 2) Predicted Academic Difficulty, 3) Educational Stress, and 4) Receptivity to Institutional Help. The focus in this study will be on the first scale: Dropout Proneness. The Dropout Proneness scale is designed to measure a student’s overall inclination to drop out of college before completing a degree. The students included on the list of “Students with High Dropout Proneness” as part of Summary and Planning Report are those with percentile scores on dropout proneness of 65 or higher.

Based on the overall motivational assessment results, UND respondents are below the national norm for dropout proneness, predicted academic difficulty, educational stress, and receptivity to institutional help. This suggests that our freshman students are less likely to drop out, have academic difficulties, experience educational stress, or ask for institutional help.

  • Want to see the report for the longitudinal study, please click Here