Date of Award

Spring 5-12-2023

Document Type

Dissertation (799 registration)

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership


Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Boyd Bradbury


first-generation, rural, college search, college students, barriers


First-generation college students (FGCS) continue to be one of the largest growing groups of students across higher education. Being a FGCS comes with a unique set of challenges when facing the choice of a college or university. This research aims to identify barriers that FGCS face in the college search process to provide student support professionals with information and recommendations on how to effectively support FGCS in the college search process. Previous research has often focused on the matriculation, retention, and graduation of FGCS. It is important to understand how FGCS select an institution of higher education to improve retention and graduation rates by providing a more supportive and effective college search process, allowing students to feel fully connected and fit to their institution.



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