Graduate Program

College Student Affairs

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Catherine L. Polydore


This qualitative study examined how a provisional admission program (Gateway) at a mid-sized institution in the rural Midwest impacts students' college self-efficacy. Participants were five students who were successfully released from the Gateway Program at the end of the 2016 - 2017 academic year, and were in their sophomore year at time of study. Data was collected from one-on-one semi-structured interviews. The findings suggest that the program's services, with a high emphasis on intrusive advising by program advisors, positively impact students' college self-efficacy. The researcher concludes that students are more efficacious in their abilities after being provided the structure of the program, including: intrusive advising, attendance in campus workshops and required courses, and limited participation in high-demand social activities such as Greek life, modeling and dance teams. Recommendations for the institution and other student affairs professionals are included.