The Transition from High School to College: Parents’ and Students’ Perceptions of Parents’ Helpfulness

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Virginia Social Science Journal


Based on a quantitative study of students at a mid-size public university in the Southeastern United States and their parents and informed by Astin’s input-environment-outcome model, this paper explores how students and parents perceive the transition from high school to college. Statistical analyses show large gaps between students’ and parents’ reports about the number of times parents’ helped their children and the effectiveness of their help during the transition from high school to college. Neither fathers’ nor mothers’ activities had any significant correlation with college grade point average (GPA). The role fathers play in their children’s college education is more complicated than it first appears.


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