Students’ experiences of the factors affecting their study progress: Differences in study profiles

Research output: Contribution to journalReview Articlepeer-review

Abstract

Many factors influence students’ progress in higher education. However, the students’ own voices are seldom heard. Using a qualitative approach, the study explored students’ own experiences of the factors that have influenced their studying. Research has indicated that students’ experiences are often related to their approaches to learning. Therefore, experiences of enhancing and impeding factors were explored here in relation to different study profiles. Altogether 736 open-ended answers were analysed by qualitative context analysis. After establishing the categories of enhancing and impeding factors and creating the student profiles, the differences between the profiles were examined using chi-square tests. The results revealed that the students had experienced a broad variety of factors that influenced their studying. These experiences varied widely with regard to the students’ study profiles. In particular, those in the Students applying a surface approach and Unorganised students applying a deep approach profiles appeared to experience more obstacles in their studies than the students in other profiles. Characteristic of these two profiles was the students’ low ability to organise their studies, that is, manage their time and effort. The study suggests that at least part of the variation in students’ experiences of the factors influencing their progress is explainable by the students’ learning profiles. Whether it would be useful to identify different student profiles rather than concentrate on asking the students directly about their experiences of enhancing and impeding factors is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Further and Higher Education
Volume42
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
ISSN0309-877X
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA2 Review article in a scientific journal

Fields of Science

  • Higher education
  • study progress
  • approaches to learning
  • mixed method research
  • TEACHING-LEARNING ENVIRONMENT
  • UNIVERSITY-STUDENTS
  • PERCEPTIONS
  • OUTCOMES
  • SUCCESS
  • 516 Educational sciences

Cite this