ERIC Number: ED297785
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Apr-14
Reference Count: N/A
Who Are We Missing? Why Some Students Are Failing Freshman Composition...and How Others Are Succeeding.
Loucks, Scott D.
A study was conducted at Shoreline Community College (SCC) to determine the differences in the personal characteristics and attitudes of students who excel in freshman composition courses and those who fail. Telephone interviews were conducted with 25 students who obtained a B+ or higher and 25 students who received an F in freshman composition between winter 1986 and spring 1987. Students were asked to provide information on their personal characteristics, history of success in English classes, college enrollment goals and influences, expected course grade, and evaluation of the instructor and instructional method. They were also asked about the reasons for their achievement level, activities competing with academic studies, strategies for studying and writing, attitudes toward college in general and English specifically; and awareness of resources for assistance in English. Study findings included the following: (1) over half of the "F" students were no longer enrolled at SCC, and most of them had no plans to return; (2) nearly 33% of the "A" students said that the primary reason for their success was that they consistently sought out the instructor for guidance and feedback; (3) among the "A" students, "the teacher" was listed most frequently as the "greatest hindrance to higher achievement," while "F" students were more likely to cite "lack of motivation"; and (4) 24% of the "F" students had taken and failed freshman composition a second time. (EJV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Shoreline Community Coll., Seattle, WA.