This report sought to test the hypothesis that living on campus fosters cognitive growth by estimating the relative freshman-year gains in reading comprehension, mathematical reasoning, and critical thinking of resident and commuter students at an urban university. Data were collected from 210 college freshmen students at a large research university in Chicago, of which 170 lived off campus. The study involved a pretest-posttest, quasi-experimental design in which comparison groups (residents versus commuters) were statistically equated on salient fall 1991 precollege variables. The data collected included a precollege survey that gathered information on student demographic characteristics and background data, and the Collegiate Assessment of Academic Proficiency, which assesses selected general skills typically obtained by students in the first 2 years of college. Controlling for precollege cognitive level, academic motivation, age, work responsibility, and extent of enrollment, resident students had significantly larger freshman year gains in critical thinking than did commuters. Contains 39 references. (GLR)
Collegiate Assess Acad Prof Crit Think Test
1 - Available on microfiche
National Center on Postsecondary Teaching, Learning, and Assessment, University Park, PA.
Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.