Faculty Research at Morehead State University


Predicting Student Performance in a College Self-Paced Introductory Psychology Course: The Role of Motivational Orientation, Learning Strategies, Procrastination and Perception of Daily Hassles

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This study examined the effectiveness of using selected self report measures assessing motivational orientation, learning strategies, procrastination, and perceptions of daily hassles to facilitate the prediction of student engagement in a self-paced introductory psychology course. Research has shown these factors to be associated with academic success. Four surveys purporting to measure the constructs were chosen, and a demographic survey was also administered. The course used a local area network of personal computers to administer all materials and to collect relevant data for each participant. Students agreeing to participate were administered the surveys during the first three class sessions of the semester. The course was self-paced, with students determining their rate of engagement. A criterion level of accumulated points determined course letter grade and course completion. Data were collected on 149 students, 122 of whom completed the course. For students completing the course, engagement was determined relevant to the number of days to course completion. A median split was used to determine early finish versus late finish groups. Non finishers made up a third group. Discriminant function analysis to discover and interpret combinations of predictors determined that group membership could be predicted reliably. Implications for using these surveys to predict student engagement, as well as instructor intervention, are discussed.