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ERIC Number: ED553727
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 149
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3031-1016-0
Predicting College Students' First Year Success: Should Soft Skills Be Taken into Consideration to More Accurately Predict the Academic Achievement of College Freshmen?
Powell, Erica Dion
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Middle Tennessee State University
This study presents a survey developed to measure the skills of entering college freshmen in the areas of responsibility, motivation, study habits, literacy, and stress management, and explores the predictive power of this survey as a measure of academic performance during the first semester of college. The survey was completed by 334 incoming freshmen at a large university in Tennessee. Analyses showed that the survey was a reliable measure (a = 0.72). Reliability indices for the individual constructs were mixed: Responsibility (a = 0.54), coping with stress (a = 0.44), study habits/skills (a = 0.72), motivation (a = 0.38), and literacy (a = 0.71). To determine the construct validity of the survey as an assessment measure predictive of college academic performance during the first semester of college, we conducted correlations with ACT score and high school GPA. The total score on the survey showed significant correlation with both HS GPA (r (248) = 0.28, p < 0.01) and ACT (r (249) = 0.17, p < 0.01) demonstrating that the survey is likely tapping into some of the same skills as other measures highly regarded as estimating college readiness. In addition, analyses were conducted to consider whether the skills measured by the survey contributed to the variance in first semester college GPA above and beyond high school GPA and highest ACT score. The total score on the survey predicted variance above and beyond high school GPA and ACT score (1.2%). Finally, analyses conducted to determine which soft skill was the strongest predictor of first semester college GPA revealed that responsibility was the construct most highly correlated with first term college GPA. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: ACT Assessment