According to a report published in the associated press in the year 2011, a total of 54% of the students who enter four year colleges within the US do successfully complete their studies (2011). In addition, the reports from the National Centre for Statistics show that the number of adult learners who were entering post secondary education in the country is on the increase. The reports show that the number of adult students who were joining the system had risen from 27.3 to 30.6 million adults between the years 2000 to 2010 which represented an increase of 8% (2011). Consequently, Ziegler & Durant explain that for adult learners to achieve success, they require to first and foremost recognize their reason for getting instructions and their involvement in the designing along with the assessment of their instructions (2007). However, Tinto reports that in the traditional courses offered in various universities approximately 40% of the adult learners who enroll for higher education in the universities eventually failed in the achievement of their desired academic goals (2008).
In the year 2008, Jones suggested that adult learners can be affected by various barriers which could range from the situational, dispositional along with institutional barriers. According to him, the situational barriers come about due to the learner’s situation which may include issues like inadequate time, their work responsibilities along with childcare. On the other hand, the author describes the institutional barriers as the issues that affect the students within an institution. This includes issues like the number of hours they are required to be operating, the inadequacy of resourceful information. Finally, the author describes the dispositional barriers as internal barriers that result from the feelings of alienation that a person may be suffering from (2008). In light of these barriers, Ziegler & Durant come out to suggest that adult education mostly encounters situational barriers due to the inadequacy of time (2007). Jones additionally suggests that these barriers have in turn made the universities and colleges to introduce programs which have not previously been a part of their past curriculums. The programs are flexible and enable adult located in far away distances to acquire education (2008). This research study will aim at ascertaining the relationship that exists between the student’s age, gender, transfer credits along with their ethnicities and their persistence in achieving their set academic goals. Problem Statement The research problem will mainly aim at establishing the relationship that exists between age, gender, transfer credits and ethnicity and the academic persistence among adult learners. Previous researches like Cook and King, did study the existing relationship between the characteristics of adult learners along with their involvement in the pursuit of higher education (2009). However, the researcher’s studies only dealt with the high school students who had cleared school and were in the first years of post secondary education. The studies did not also indicate the existing patterns