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Skills, learning styles and success of first-year undergraduates

[journal article]

Goldfinch, Judy; Hughes, Moira

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Abstract This study investigates the relationships between students' confidence in their generic skills on entry to university, their learning styles and their academic performance in first year. Research based on a large cohort of Scottish undergraduates found that students generally entered university feeling very confident that they already possessed good skills, and there was a suggestion of over-confidence in that those who failed the year entered with slightly higher confidence than other students. However, those students who withdrew during the year had significantly less confidence. The most significant combination of factors in explaining success in first year were a low score on the activist learning style scale and high initial confidence in the skills of self-reliance, time management and teamwork, together with lower initial confidence in written communication skills. The implications of this research are discussed and some suggestions made for improving educational practice.
Free Keywords academic performance; business undergraduates; generic skills; learning styles; retention;
Document language English
Publication Year 2007
Page/Pages p. 259-273
Journal Active Learning in Higher Education, 8 (2007) 3
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)