Examining The Relationship Between Student Learning Habits And Post-Secondary Educational Outcomes: The Missing Component
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DepartmentEducation and Urban Studies
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In high schools across the country, college readiness standards have emerged as an important post-secondary educational outcome. Previous reform efforts have largely focused on “failing schools” versus “failing students” (Weissberg, 2010). This study takes the view that student learning habits might be better determinants of college readiness than previous educational practices have considered. Using the 1992 National Education Longitudinal Study (NELS:88/92), this study analyzed the nine student learning habits that social scientists have discussed as key factors for achieving positive post-secondary educational outcomes. The student learning habits under consideration in this study were: (a) work handed in on time, (b) less absenteeism, (c) taking harder courses, (d) diligence, (e) work habits (time spent on mathematics homework, science homework, English homework, social studies/history homework, and total homework), (f) paying attention in class, (g) participating in class, (h) doing more than what is expected, and (i) preparation for class (Jeynes, 2003). The quantitative research design explored the relationship among nine students learning habits and sought to determine if there is a predictive relationship between student learning habits and post-secondary educational outcomes of public high school students. This study also examined which combination of the student learning habits was the best predictor of post-secondary educational outcomes. Post-secondary educational outcomes were measured on a continuum: (a) did not complete high school, (b) no post-secondary education, (c) no degree, currently working on certification or license, (d) no degree currently working on Associates Degree, (e) no degree currently working on Bachelors Degree, (f) some post-secondary education, other, (g) certificate or license, and (h) Associates Degree. The findings concluded that there is a relationship between the nine student learning habits and post-secondary educational outcomes. Of the nine student learning habits explored, the findings indicated that less absenteeism, taking harder courses, and time spent on completing mathematics homework (work habits) were the most significant predictors of students' post-secondary educational outcomes.