Status of Postsecondary Vocational Education

Vocational Education Journal, May 1995 | Go to article overview

Status of Postsecondary Vocational Education


The NCES and MPR update of Vocational Education in the United States: 1969-1990 also will contain national data on postsecondary vocational education. These two pages highlight the postsecondary findings from some of the data to be included in the new publication.

*PARTICIPATION IN VOCATIONAL EDUCATION

In 1990, nonbaccalaureate postsecondary students were twice as likely to report majoring in a vocational program area as they were to report either majoring in an academic area or taking personal or avocational courses.(1) About half of the students reported vocational majors, whereas one in four either had an academic major or were regarded as "casual coursetakers."

*INSTITUTIONS PROVIDING VOCATIONAL EDUCATION

In 1990, community colleges served the majority of nonbaccalaureate postsecondary students reporting a vocational major. Private proprietary institutions were the second largest vocational education provider. The rest of the students were served by other types of postsecondary institutions, including public 4-year; public vocational-technical; private, nonprofit 4-year; and private, nonprofit less-than-4-year institutions.

*COMMUNITY COLLEGE OCCUPATIONAL PROGRAMS WITH THE LARGEST GENDER GAPS

Among 1990 community college students, women were more than twice as likely as men to report majoring in health (15 percent compared with 5 percent). On the other hand, men were more than twice as likely as women to report majoring in engineering and science technologies (10 percent compared with 1 percent), and trade and industry (8 percent compared with 1 percent). Men were also more likely to major in protective services.

*COMPARISON OF ACADEMIC AND VOCATIONAL MAJORS

In 1990, nonbaccalaureate students with vocational majors were more likely than their peers with academic majors to be enrolled full time and to be seeking a formal degree or certificate rather than casually taking courses. Those with vocational majors were also more likely to be economically independent from their parents. …

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