Back to School? What Adults Without Degrees Say About Pursuing Additional Education and Training

Back to School? What Adults Without Degrees Say About Pursuing Additional Education and Training

Nearly half (46 percent) of the 60 percent of working-age Americans who do not have a college degree believe they need further education and training to advance their careers, a report from the Strada Education Network and Gallup finds. Based on the Strada-Gallup Education Consumer Survey, the report, Back to School? What Adults Without Degrees Say About Pursuing Additional Education and Training (12 pages, PDF), found that 42 percent of respondents with a high school diploma or GED, 59 percent of those without, 51 percent of those with a technical or vocational degree, and 44 percent of those with some college credits saw a need for additional education and training. While young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 were most likely to say they required more education to advance their careers (55 percent) and would likely enroll in courses or training in the next five years (74 percent) — with both percentages falling steadily with age — even among respondents between the ages of 55 and 64, 31 percent saw the need for and 26 percent said they would likely enroll in courses or training. The survey also found that respondents of color saw the need for and were likely to pursue further education at higher rates — including Latinx (65 percent and 63 percent), African Americans (56 percent and 64 percent), and Asian Americans (51 percent and 67 percent) — than were "other" (43 perecent and 55 percent) and white respondents (36 percent  and 49 percent). In terms of where respondents were "extremely likely" or "likely" to seek further education or training, employers topped the list (33 percent), followed by community colleges (23 percent), trade schools or programs (21 percent), professional associations (18 percent), and four-year institutions (17 percent), and the factor most likely to affect enrollment was a guaranteed employment outcome (57 percent), followed by free community college tuition (55 percent) and courses and training that fit their schedule (54 percent).

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