Higher Education Learner’s Academic Performance Is Affected by Multiple Factors.

Topics: Education, Higher education, Educational psychology Pages: 5 (1048 words) Published: September 29, 2011

Higher education learner’s academic performance is affected by multiple factors. Discus 50[marks]


Student academic performance is one of the major determinants in assessing the quality of Education. Students at higher education are mature enough to mention the influential and hindering factors towards their academic performance. Identifying factors that influence students’ learning and thus academic perfomance continues to be an important objective of educators at all levels (Carrotte, 1999).

Analysis revealed that certain elements contribute towards student’s academic performances, which are categorized into six major factors: Academic, Personal, Media, Facilities, Guidance Services and Organizational Climate.

Academic Factor

Academic factors are those factors affecting student academic performance pertaining to content, methodology, assessment system, teaching learning environment and attending educational events.

Students’ attitude towards a particular subject has a positive relation with achievement (Bos & Kuiper, 1999). Cognitive as academic performances, motivational factors, teaching methodology and classroom-contextual factors exercise a significant influence. Cognitive factors including cognitive capabilities, previous knowledge, and, to some extent, subject-specific self-concept are important for student academic performance (Von Rhöneck, Grob, Schnaitmann, & Völker, 1998).

Personal Factor

Personal factors include the elements which are subjected to individual traits, abilities, psychosocial conditions and opportunities and constraints affecting their academic performance.

Various factors affect student academic performance at higher education level like personal confidence and a feeling of competence in learning; hopeful but realistic projection into the future occupational roles and social roles; emotional stability; temperamental tendency towards introversion; relative independence from teachers and a tacit acceptance of the of the curricular and work demands arising within the structure of tuition (Wankowski, 1991). Self-efficacy has been identified as a positive predictor of academic performance (Lee & Bobko, 1994).

Academic performance is affected by students’ personal characteristics, attitudes, activities and most of all students’ interest and engagement. Students with low academic self-esteem and the students that are not interested and actively engaged are at a significantly higher risk of low academic performance.

Along with these factors pertaining to the students’ personalities, family background is also very important. Research indicates that students from lower socio-economic background in terms of parents’ occupational status faced a higher risk of low achievement. Home educational background and parents’ educational attainment greatly influences the quality of education for their children. Student academic performance was found to be directly proportional to the education of their parents (Bos & Kuiper, 1999, Rainey & Murova, 2004). The cultural factors of the home were another family characteristic that proved significant in predicting low academic performance (Linnakyl et. al, 2004).


The factor facilities refer to the different types of facilities either provided by the institute or available at home and these have an effect on student academic performance. Most Students in higher education have positive influence of facilities on their academic performance. However, they rate the scholarships as highest to be followed by the library access and other financial support by the institute. Access to the internet facility, facilities at home and the provision of transport by the institute are also contributing towards their academic performance.


Along with physical facilities, guidance services provided by the institute play a significant role in academic performance. Guidance services have significantly positive...

References: 1. Bos, K. & Kuiper, W. (1999). Modeling TIMSS Data in a European Comparative Perspective: Exploring Influencing Factors on Achievement in Mathematics in Grade 8. Educational Research and Evaluation, 5 (2), 157 — 179.
2. Carrotte, P. (1999). Turning academics into teachers. In S. Rowland et al. Teaching in Higher Education, 4 (3), 411–14.
3. Linnakyl, P., Malin, A. & Taube, K. (2004). Factors behind low reading literacy achievement.
4. Packham, G. & Miller, C. (2000). Peer-Assisted Student Support: A new approach to learning. Journal of Further and Higher Education, 24, (1), 55-65.
5. Papanastasiou, C. (2002). Effects of Background and School Factors on the Mathematics Achievement. Educational Research and Evaluation, 8 (1), 55 — 70.
6. Von Rhöneck, Christoph, Grob, Karl, Schnaitmann, Gerhard W. & Völker, B. (1998). Learning in basic electricity: how do motivation, cognitive and classroom climate factors influence achievement in physics? International Journal of Science Education, 20 (5), 551 — 565.
7. Wankowski, J. (1991). Success and failure at university, in: K. Raaheim, J. Wankowski & J. Radford. (1991). Helping Students to Learn: teaching, counselling, research, pp. 259–267, London, Society for Research into Higher Education & OUP.
8. Wankowski, J. (1991). Success and failure at university, in: K. Raaheim, J. Wankowski & J. Radford. (1991). Helping Students to Learn: teaching, counselling, research, pp. 259–267, London, Society for Research into Higher Education & OUP.
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