After High School, Then What?

A Look at the Postsecondary Sorting-Out Process for American Youth

by Gus Haggstrom, Thomas J. Blaschke, Richard J. Shavelson

Download

Full Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 8.8 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

Purchase

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback145 pages $35.00 $28.00 20% Web Discount

This study examines patterns of military service, college enrollment, and civilian labor force participation among recent high school graduates and dropouts, and the key factors affecting the postsecondary sorting-out process in the 1980s, with special attention to the flows of high school graduates into and out of educational activities and military service. A comprehensive database was compiled for this study, drawing on the High School and Beyond longitudinal study of more than 26,000 high school seniors in the classes of 1980 and 1982. The authors derived estimates and projections of numbers of high school graduates by state, sex, race, and Hispanic origin for the years 1980-2000. The findings indicate that activity patterns during the first year after leaving school have remained remarkably stable since the early 1970s, with some increases in both college enrollment and military enlistment rates in the early 1980s. Analyses of activities during the rest of the five-year period following high school reveal considerable turbulence, much of it into and out of short-term civilian jobs. The findings indicate that a substantial proportion of high school seniors in the 1980s lacked direction when they left school, and that their subsequent activities were marked by false starts and backtracking. The authors conclude that the United States made poor use of its human resources during the 1980s and will be hard put to meet its manpower requirements in the 1990s.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation report series. The report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1993 that represented the principal publication documenting and transmitting RAND's major research findings and final research.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.