School of Behavioral Sciences
Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)
academic outcomes, community college, GPA, mental health services program, persistence, telemental health
Rodriguez-Alvarez, Rosa Maria, "Evaluating the Impact of the Southern Community College Mental Health Services Program on Persistence and Academic Performance" (2023). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 4299.
College students presenting with mental health concerns are increasing as is the severity of those issues. Researchers agree that mental health issues are associated with negative academic outcomes. This college student mental health crisis along with decreased enrollments and budgets has caused administrators to examine the return on investment of services programs. The purpose of this non-experimental study was to determine the impact of receiving counseling services on persistence and academic performance measures by grade point average (GPA). This study conducted a quantitative analysis of archival data from the Southern Community Colleges Mental Health Services program. One hundred records were selected from students who requested counseling services between Spring 2019 and Fall 2021. Records were categorized by counseling sessions to determine if completing counseling services had a significant impact on academic outcomes compared to student records who requested but did not receive or complete counseling. Additionally, the records of students who received in-person counseling were compared against students who received telemental health counseling. The results of this study did not find a significant difference in academic outcomes between students who requested and received counseling and those that did not receive or complete counseling. Also, there was not a significant difference in academic outcomes between receiving in-person or telemental health counseling. The findings of this study suggest that the impact of mental health services programs on academic outcomes at the community college may be difficult to interpret. Future research should include mixed research including student narratives, psychological factors, and counselor effectiveness.
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