Group Differences in the Achievement-Related Cognitions of Australian High School Students

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Kouzma, Nadya M (2005) Group Differences in the Achievement-Related Cognitions of Australian High School Students. PhD thesis, Victoria University.


The aims of this study were to gain a more highly defined understanding of academic achievement by examining possible demographic differences in students' achievement-related cognitions; and provide information that may allow future researchers to design programs aimed at improving students' academic achievement within specified demographic strata. More specifically, the aims of the present study were two-fold, (a) to investigate sociodemographic differences in students' achievement-related cognitions and (b) to examine the role of identity status in students' achievement-related cognitions. The participants were 325 students (122 males and 203 females) recruited from five large secondary schools from across Metropolitan Melbourne. The results showed that most of the significant differences in students' achievement-related cognitions were grade and identity status related. This suggests that much of the variability in achievement-related cognitions measured in this study may be environmental (i.e., grade differences) and/ or developmental (i.e., age differences and maturation) in nature. These results are important in order to identify at-risk groups (i.e., at-risk of achievement problems) and to better structure learning environments and support systems for these students, in an effort to enhance or facilitate their achievement prospects. Continued research in the area will help provide evidence-based practices in Australian schools.

Item type Thesis (PhD thesis)
Subjects Historical > RFCD Classification > 330000 Education
Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Social Sciences and Psychology
Keywords academic achievement; demographic differences
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