The Influence of Educational Psychology Variables on Student Grades in an Introductory Economics Course


Abstract. In the two principles of microeconomics classes that I taught during the 2013 academic year, one hundred seventy students participated in the completion of five questionnaires. The first questionnaire covered determinants of student performance recognized in economic education and they include GPA, student classification, employment status, gender, age, race, and attendance. The other questionnaires were developed by well known scholars in the field of educational psychology and they describe the following educational psychology variables: a 29-item Locus of Control Scale, a 12-item Achievement Goal Scale, a 19-item Test Anxiety Scale, and a 16-item Procrastination Scale. A t test was conducted to show the psychological profile of students who outperformed others. A correlation matrix was used to estimate the degree of association between various variables with student grades, while regression analysis was conducted to show the influence of economic education and educational psychology variables on student grades. The regression equation with only economic education determinants shows that GPA and gender are the only significant variables on student grades, with GPA having a positive effect and males outperforming females. When psychological variables are added to the initial equation, regression results show that GPA, mastery approach, and debilitating test anxiety are the only significant variables on student performance, with both GPA and mastery orientation variables having a positive effect, while debilitating test anxiety has a negative effect on student performance. The implication of these results for educators is discussed in the paper.

Author Information
Ahmad Kader, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, United States

Paper Information
Conference: ECE2017
Stream: Education for interdisciplinary thinking

This paper is part of the ECE2017 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon