Native American* postsecondary education students encounter several barriers to academic persistence including cultural assimilation issues, limited access to career information services, and an individual sense of duty and responsibility to remain tied to traditional spiritual values and beliefs systems, joined with family pressure to stay home. While the presence of Native American students in postsecondary education has increased, the number of students persisting through to graduation remains alarmingly low. Much of the research on Native American academic persistence has focused on acculturation and assimilation issues, leaving the influence of family largely unexplored. To help enrich this aspect of Native American academic persistence research, this study analyzed semi-structured qualitative interviews of 25 Native American postsecondary students. Themes resulting from the hermeneutic analysis of transcribed texts that describe the influence of family on persistence were (a) transportation challenges, (b) financial challenges, (c) experiences of familiarity while at college, (d) pressure to succeed academically, (e) pressure to navigate two worlds—school and family, and (f) academic endurance.
College and Department
David O. McKay School of Education; Counseling Psychology and Special Education
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Fox, Lisa Jeannette, "Influence of Family on Native American Students" (2012). All Theses and Dissertations. 3299.
family, influence, persistence, academic experience, Native American, American Indian, postsecondary education