Nursing Innovation for the Future ™

Nursing Innovation for the Future ™

As technological advancements continue to spring forth, they bring with them a promising outlook for innovative technologies and the future of Nursing. This is a welcome change arriving just in time to meet the ever-increasing educational demands of non-traditional students. According to the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES), non-traditional students account for a significant portion of all student enrollments.


                                                Nontraditional characteristics
                                                                                                   GED/2 or
                            Percent with   Older  Attend    Work                 Have           high school
                                  any NT    than    part    full   Independ-  depend-  Single    completion
                  Year   characteristics typical    time    time       ent/1     ents  parent   certificate
All                 86              64.6    53.9    37.8    25.6        46.3     19.9     6.5           7.0
undergraduates      89              68.6    56.2    38.7    32.7        48.6     22.2     7.2           4.9
                    92              69.6    59.2    42.2    27.6        48.3     20.0     6.9           4.0
Nontraditional        Total percent
undergraduates:              with status
Minimally           86              13.8    37.6    34.4    12.3        11.3      0.0     0.0           4.4
nontraditional      89              15.1    36.1    24.7    31.1        10.9      0.0     0.0           1.5
                    92              15.1    48.4    32.5    12.0        11.1      0.0     0.0           0.9
Moderately          86              24.8    89.0    44.5    24.8        73.0     12.0     0.8           8.2
nontraditional      89              27.5    89.8    48.3    30.3        74.6     13.5     1.5           4.5
                    92              31.1    93.9    56.3    25.9        73.4     11.3     2.1           3.3
Highly              86              26.0    99.3    83.2    69.5        99.6     63.1    22.8          19.5
nontraditional      89              25.9    99.4    83.6    72.6        99.9     66.5    24.6          13.0
                    92              23.4    99.0    83.7    68.4        99.9     68.9    27.1          12.2

Fig. 1: Composition of undergraduates according to nontraditional (NT) characteristics among all undergraduates: Fall 1986, 1989, and 1992

NOTE: Nontraditional status is based on the presence of one or more of seven possible nontraditional characteristics: minimal=1, moderate=2 or 3, highly=4 or more.

SOURCES: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, National Postsecondary Student Aid Study: 1986-87 (NPSAS:87), 1989-90 (NPSAS:90), 1992-93 (NPSAS:93), Data Analysis Systems.


Nevertheless, the question begs to be asked: have adequate measures been taken to sufficiently meet the needs of nontraditional students? As we know, "traditional schools" cater to "traditional" students. What, then, does this mean for the opportunities and resources available for professional realization of all others?


According to the NCES, nontraditional students are often over the age of 24, may be (single) parents, ethnic minorities, woman, and other demographic groups faced with family responsibilities and financial constraints. Others that may be included in this group would be those living in rural areas where traditional schooling simply is not available.

In their (NCES') own words:

Overall, students who are identified as nontraditional according to these criteria are more likely to be women, to belong to a racial-ethnic minority group, and to have less educated parents than traditional students. However, as previously noted, rather than focusing on background characteristics, the criteria chosen to identify nontraditional students in this study are ones that are subject to intervention or change at various stages of a student's academic life. For example, high school students who are prepared to enter postsecondary education but who are uncertain about whether they should attend immediately or delay their enrollment, could be encouraged to do the former. Alternatively, adults who make the commitment to return to school or enroll for the first time later in life could be offered assistance in a number of ways to help them persist and attain their educational goals. Such assistance might be flexible class scheduling, child care arrangements, part-time job placement, and so on.

Erudite Nursing Institute ™  has sought to rise to the challenge of ensuring that all students--regardless of race, creed, ethnicity, disability, gender, or other personal quality--be given equal opportunity and equal access to technological advancements that may be implemented for the benefit of nontraditional students.


The innovative use of technology to help bridge disparities between traditional and nontraditional students' educational resources and opportunities will play a key role in ensuring that all qualified persons--be they in rural areas lacking access to traditional education and/or full-time working adults whom are also full-time parents--are guaranteed the opportunity to attain their educational goals without having to leave their home or family behind.


The truth is: not everyone has the luxury of putting their life on hold or altogether leaving their life behind for educational pursuits. Erudite Nursing Institute's™ innovative program structures, ample curriculums, and supportive staff work to make certain that nontraditional students can be equally trained and prepared to take leadership roles in the future. Erudite Nursing Institute is Nursing Innovation for the Future ™.


Note: The foregoing article is copyrighted and may not be reproduced in part or entirety without advance written permission. For permissions or editorial corrections, contact: Ms. Kelsey Hanna,