ERIC Number: EJ1062134
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 42
Who Leaves, Who Stays? Psychological Predictors of Undergraduate Chemistry Students' Persistence
Shedlosky-Shoemaker, Randi; Fautch, Jessica M.
Journal of Chemical Education, v92 n3 p408-414 Mar 2015
The number of undergraduate students completing degrees in STEM disciplines has been declining over the last few decades. With a growing body of research considering what predicts persistence in STEM fields, one approach is to consider individual differences as predictors of attrition in the major. The current study utilized a variety of individual difference measures related to perceptions of ability and performance, motivation, and identity as predictors of which undergraduate students would change from the initially declared chemistry major within their first two years. Results indicated that students who left the chemistry major tended to have higher self-doubt and greater desire to avoid failure (i.e., performance-avoidance orientation). Additionally, the degree to which competition and academic competence impacted participants' self-worth related to persistence. Results are discussed in the context of the growing body of research linking individual differences to student persistence in STEM.
Descriptors: Predictor Variables, Undergraduate Students, Chemistry, Academic Persistence, Individual Differences, Measures (Individuals), Student Motivation, Self Efficacy, Academic Ability, Social Influences, Academic Achievement, Intention, Achievement Need, Majors (Students), Student Characteristics, Statistical Analysis, Grade Point Average
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Need for Cognition Scale