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Some Biographical and Attitudinal Characteristics of Entering College Freshmen: A Summary Report of a Questionnaire Survey CSQ

Peterson, Richard E.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Bulletin
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Biographical Inventories, College Freshmen, College Student Questionnaires (CSQ), Student Attitudes, Student Characteristics


The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief review of selected results of a questionnaire survey of some 13,000 entering freshmen at 23 colleges and universities. The survey provided information bearing on educational and vocational orientations, secondary education, family background, and certain personal attitudes. That colleges differ in the average intellectual ability of their students is well known. As is shown by these survey data, however, there are also large differences from one student body to another in typical social backgrounds, educational purposes, and personal qualities. An individual with a given background and personality pattern may find a congenial interpersonal environment at one college but not at another--a circumstance which could be of major consequence for his or her well-being as a college student. These data also have implications for the organization and administration of American higher education, which would seem to be rapidly assuming a mass character.

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