ECO-250

Volker Grzimek

Regression Analysis of Work Hours in Relation to GPA

This research investigated the affects of working extra hours in a labor position on students’ GPAs each semester at Berea College. It was my belief that students who worked more hours were more likely to have lower GPAs due to their studying abilities and opportunities being compromised as a result of working too long (a negative correlation or trend between GPAs and hours worked each week). For each hour a student worked it was my belief that he or she became more fatigued, more stressed, and lost an hour in which to study. Each student must work at least ten hours here on campus as required by the Berea College Labor Program. Students may select to work more to make more money or to gain experience in a chosen field, or they may have to work more to meet work requirements for state assistance programs which help them financially but require that certain number of hours (usually 20) be worked by the student each week.

In order to test this hypothesis it was important that I collect unbiased samples. I did so by placing a survey in the labor program office where any random student was just as likely as any other to come in during this time of year when all students were turning in forms for their labor positions for the next year. I asked the students to record their classification (freshman, sophomore, etc.), whether or not they were recent transfer students, the number of hours they worked, and their semester GPA. I specifically asked that all of this information be in regards to the last full term, fall semester of 2011, so as not to get incomplete data for the current semester which is not finished. I only asked for their semester GPA and their number of hours they worked each week during that same semester and not for their entire college career.

This was so that I would not need to account for the fact that students can work a different number of hours each semester. Out of 40 surveys I had to exclude six that were completed by freshmen or recent transfers who are all only allowed to work ten hours in their first semester. Had they been included there would have been a large number of students who worked 10 hours which would have shifted the mean and median calculations for hours and would not have given a more accurate view of the entire Berea population. Also, freshmen and transfers are new to their positions and are placed by the program which may put them at a disadvantage in jobs they may not like that stress them out and cause them to experience more fatigue as opposed to upper-classmen who get to pick their positions and work in places they feel more comfortable and are, therefore, less stressed and fatigued before studying.

Having eliminated the freshmen and recent transfers the end result was a sample of 34 students. The minimum semester GPA for the sample was 1.95 while the maximum was a 4.0. I contemplated eliminating to samples that had GPAs of 4.0 to keep them from raising the average too high but the next high GPA was 3.81 which meant that the two numbers did not seem to be outliers and were consistent with the other data. The obvious minimum numbers of hours one can work is the 10 hours required by the college while the maximum in our samples is 20. This could vary in the population but it is very rare that any student would work more than 20 hours because it requires special permission. (Working between 15 and 20 hours requires special permission but is not as hard to get approved and occurs quite frequently.) More of the descriptive statistics are shown in the table 1.

Table 1: Descriptive Statistics

| |Hours Worked Each Week |Semester GPA | |Mean |12.82352941 |2.982647059 | |Standard Deviation |3.468215752...