Defining ourselves as Nontraditional Students

Defining the Nontraditional Student (...what others may think, what I think, and what you think...)
This group could be Nontrads! Photo by Ed Schipul, Brian Potter and Sarah Worthy.

OK - we know that nontraditional students are usually older, some have families, and many go part-time, online, or take a combination of all of these back-to-school classes.

Wikipedia defines a nontraditional students using the National Center for Education Statistics' definition.

They have seven separate characteristics of the nontraditional student:

"1. Delays enrollment (does not enter postsecondary education in the same calendar year that he or she finished high school)
2. Attends part time for at least part of the academic year  

3, Works full time (35 hours or more per week) while enrolled  

4. Is considered financially independent for purposes of determining eligibility for financial aid  

5. Has dependents other than a spouse (usually children, but sometimes others)  

6. Is a single parent (either not married or married but separated and has dependents)  

7. Does not have a high school diploma (completed high school with a GED or other high school completion certificate or did not finish high school)"

Some schools define a nontraditional student as being over 24. But I think a nontraditional student COULD be younger.

More of what I think: 
The nontraditional students I have met DO have a high school diploma, but I actually did not ask some of them about having a GED. I think a GED is just as valid as a "regular" diploma.

I also noticed that some of the nontraditional students I knew worked part-time or did not work also (referencing #3 above).

I also met people who were going to school full-time, which takes out #3.

My personal definition is "A person going back to school after a break." This gets to include GED students and students taking other higher education  classes. It's not JUST about college.

What do you think?

Leave a comment and start a conversation. See you next posting, and thanks for stopping by!

Current and Former Nontraditional Student
Former: Education!
Current: Art from self-study, and finishing my books. (HOW could I forget that last time?)

Some Nontrad links: The Nontrad site and blog Join Nontrads on Facebook Nontrads on Yahoo Nontrads on Twitter 

Article links: The National Center for Education Statistics
Non-Traditional Students - on Wikipedia