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Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement: The Mind-Body Connection

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Children's wellbeing has been of utmost concern to society, and recently this topic has taken a particular focus in both health and achievement. As the focus shifts towards promoting a healthier and more academically successful youth, the relationship between the

Children's wellbeing has been of utmost concern to society, and recently this topic has taken a particular focus in both health and achievement. As the focus shifts towards promoting a healthier and more academically successful youth, the relationship between the two warrants investigation. Specifically, the relationship between physical fitness and academic performance (i.e. grades) in 4th grade students was assessed. A cross-sectional design was used to assess physical fitness of children (M=9.39 years) by means of the FITNESSGRAM assessment tool. Third-quarter grades were used to measure academic performance. Relationships between the variables were determined through bivariate plots, Pearson product moment correlation analysis, independent t-tests, and a three-step regression analysis. The results show a significant relationship between students' aerobic fitness and academic performance. Furthermore, the findings of this study suggest incremental validity between aerobic fitness and academic performance, thus implying predictive value associated with increased physical fitness and academic achievement.

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2012-12

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Parental Expectations and Future Pathways to Success

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Expectation for college attendance in the United States continues to rise as more jobs require degrees. This study aims to determine how parental expectations affect high school students in their decision to attend college. By examining parental expectations that were

Expectation for college attendance in the United States continues to rise as more jobs require degrees. This study aims to determine how parental expectations affect high school students in their decision to attend college. By examining parental expectations that were placed on current college students prior to and during the application period, we can determine the positive and negative outcomes of these expectations as well as the atmosphere they are creating. To test the hypothesis, an online survey was distributed to current ASU and Barrett, Honors College students regarding their experience with college applications and their parents' influence on their collegiate attendance. A qualitative analysis of the data was conducted in tandem with an analysis of several case studies to determine the results. These data show that parental expectations are having a significant impact on the enrollment of high school students in college programs. With parents placing these expectations on their children, collegiate enrollment will continue to increase. Further studies will be necessary to determine the specific influences these expectations are placing on students.

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2021-05

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The failure project: self-efficacy, mindset, grit and navigating perceived failures in design and the arts

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Artists and designers are preparing for rapidly changing and competitive careers in creative fields that require a healthy dose of resiliency to persevere. However, little is known on how students within these fields become more self-efficacious, gritty, situated toward a

Artists and designers are preparing for rapidly changing and competitive careers in creative fields that require a healthy dose of resiliency to persevere. However, little is known on how students within these fields become more self-efficacious, gritty, situated toward a growth mindset, and persistent over time. This mixed-method action research study investigates how undergraduate arts and design college students approach and navigate perceptions of failure as well as incorporates an intervention course designed to increase their self-efficacy, growth mindset, and academic persistence. Participants were eighteen arts and design students representing a variety of disciplines from an eight-week, one-unit, 300-level course that utilized arts-based methods, mindfulness, and active reflection. After the course, students had significant changes in their self-efficacy and academic persistence as well as moderate significant change in their fixed mindset.

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2018

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The power of instructor-student and peer rapport in post-secondary student achievement

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This paper addresses a local problem of practice at Arizona State University regarding the support for potentially underprepared students. The overarching goal of this study was to better understand the role rapport plays in student achievement. This study examines how

This paper addresses a local problem of practice at Arizona State University regarding the support for potentially underprepared students. The overarching goal of this study was to better understand the role rapport plays in student achievement. This study examines how the LEAD Project (Learn, Explore, Advance, Design), in particular student relationships with instructors and their peers, may or may not influence student achievement. LEAD students complete three courses as a group – Introduction to Human Communication (COM 100), Critical Reading and Thinking (UNI 110), and The LEAD Project (ASU 150). The innovation was designed to give students the opportunity to build relationships with their instructors and with each other, so class sizes are limited to 40 students. Additionally, instructors work together outside of class to develop curriculum, instructional plans, and how to best support individual students.

Guiding literature for this study included Self-Determination Theory (SDT) as well as related studies (Deci & Flaste, 1995). This theory describes human motivation as a factor of the extent to which one feels autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Though relevant in many contexts, past researchers used SDT as a tool for understanding students’ motivation to learn (Black & Deci, 2000; Freiberger, Steinmayr, & Spinath, 2012; Reeve & Jang, 2006).

The study used a concurrent mixed-method action research design including interviews, questionnaires, and institutional data. Over 400 first-year students participated in the study. Students shared their perceptions of their rapport with their instructors and peers, and their perceived learning in each of the three LEAD courses.

Data were analyzed using correlation and linear regression approaches. Significant relations occurred between many instructor-student rapport scales, peer rapport, perceived learning, and course grades. Additionally, instructor-student rapport scales significantly predicted perceived learning.

Qualitative and quantitative findings were aligned with each other, and were consistent with previous studies. This study advances the body of knowledge about instructor-student rapport by extending the findings around its role in student achievement. Results also suggested the need to further explore the role of peer rapport and its influence on student achievement. Results from the study show instructor-student rapport was mediators of student achievement.

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2018