Frontiers in Psychology
The present study addressed concerns over the high risk of university students’ academic failure. It examined how perceived academic control and academic emotions predict undergraduate students’ academic success, conceptualized as both low dropout intention and high achievement (indicated by GPA). A cross-sectional survey was administered to 883 undergraduate students across all disciplines of a German STEM orientated university. The study additionally compared freshman students (N = 597) vs. second-year students (N = 286). Using structural equation modeling, for the overall sample of undergraduate students we found that perceived academic control positively predicted enjoyment and achievement, as well as negatively predicted boredom and anxiety. The prediction of dropout intention by perceived academic control was fully mediated via anxiety. When taking perceived academic control into account, we found no specific impact of enjoyment or boredom on the intention to dropout and no specific impact of all three academic emotions on achievement. The multi-group analysis showed, however, that perceived academic control, enjoyment, and boredom among second-year students had a direct relationship with dropout intention. A major contribution of the present study was demonstrating the important roles of perceived academic control and anxiety in undergraduate students’ academic success. Concerning corresponding institutional support and future research, the results suggested distinguishing incoming from advanced undergraduate students.
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Respondek, Lisa; Seufert, Tina; Stupnisky, Robert; and Nett, Ulrike E., "Perceived Academic Control and Academic Emotions Predict Undergraduate University Student Success: Examining Effects on Dropout Intention and Achievement" (2017). Education, Health & Behavior Studies Faculty Publications. 46.