Academic and non-academic characteristics of successful and non-successful college science students

Yantis, Mary Ann
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title

This study examined the relationship between selected academic and non-academic variables and academic success of college science students. Subjects were 45 volunteers who completed the research questionnaire, and 19 of these subjects were interviewed for additional descriptive information related to their learning experiences in their college science classes. The non-academic variables of self-esteem, self-concept of ability, and social support were found to be related to science student success. The academic variables of cumulative science course grade point average, Texas Academic Skills Program test math scores, and Texas Academic Skills Program test reading scores were found to be related to science student success. There were no differences found between minority and non-minority students with respect to any of the research variables. The best set of predictor variables for success in college science students consists of: (a) Texas Academic Skills Program test reading scores, (b) number of hours employed per week, (c) total loss score, (d) cumulative grade point average, (e) number of miles commuted per week to attend class, (f) loss quality score, and (g) loss quantity score. These findings have implications for college science course educators and administration. An effort should be made to support and to enhance student reading skills. Since student losses were shown to be related to lower grades in science courses, an effort should be made to identify student losses early, so that prompt intervention may be offered. Available support services should be widely communicated and promoted to all students and those services expanded, where necessary. Faculty should engage in activities which promote positive self-concept of ability and positive self-esteem in students. Colleges also should continue to make financial aid available for needy students.

Academic success, College students, Texas Academic Skills Program, Science education