Education | Psychology


The focus on academic success starts early for many students. For example, many high school students have clear career goals and may take steps to ensure success at the collegiate level in order to achieve their goals (McWhirter, Torres, Salgado, & Valdez, 2007). Studies have shown that students who rate high on academic self-efficacy while in high school continue to succeed in their postsecondary education (Eccles, Vida, & Barber, 2004; Eccles & Wigfield, 2002). One method in which high school students can be better prepared for postsecondary education and increase their academic self-efficacy (Margolis & McCabe, 2004) is by participating in programs that offer collegelevel curriculum at the high school level, such as dual enrollment (DE) programs. Method: Two hundred and eight undergraduate students responded to questionnaires assessing factors that may help DE students succeed in college, including higher self-efficacy, academic hardiness, perfectionism, and expectations of success. Results: DE students did in fact possess higher GPAs than did non-DE students. Results showed the most important factor affecting GPA in DE students was facilitating anxiety. For those students that did not take dual enrollment courses, the main factors related to GPA were academic hardiness, general self-efficacy, and organizational skills. Conclusion: College administrators may wish to emphasize different factors for success based on students’ academic backgrounds.

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Dr. Mary Pritchard