ANALYSIS OF THE MARINE CORPS EDUCATIONAL TIER SYSTEM
Holmes, Andrew L.
Eitelberg, Mark J.
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This thesis analyzes the effects of certain demographic characteristics on first-term attrition and fleet attrition from the U.S. Marine Corps. The demographic characteristics studied include age, dependency status, gender, race, the Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT) score, and educational credentials. The Marine Corps currently screens applicants based on educational credential by utilizing the tier system. In 2012, the Marine Corps decided to shift the home school educational credential to Tier I status. Thereafter, analysis was conducted to determine the effects of this shift. Probit regression models were constructed to explain the likelihood of first-term and fleet attrition based on educational credentials. The data draw from the USMC Total Force Data Warehouse for all enlisted cohorts between fiscal years 2003 and 2007. Model results show that educational tiers are inaccurate at predicting first-term and fleet attrition among certain educational credentials and demographics. The model also shows that the tiers become less accurate once the home school education credential is moved to Tier I status. Similarly, the results demonstrate that there are different factors that predict first-term attrition when compared with the survivors of boot camp who attrite after reaching the fleet. Results also show that gender, dependency status, and educational credentials are all significant factors in predicting first-term and fleet attrition.
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