Can Students' Attitudes and Behaviors be Changed by Educational Interventions?
A Comparative Case Study
This study examined engineering students’ attitudes and behaviors in a first-year Calculus course. Not surprisingly, High School mathematics and physics grades correlated closely with self-reported Calculus grades, and a student survey conducted four years apart demonstrated almost identical attitudes and behaviors despite the introduction of a range of measures aimed to enhance learning. The better the grades, the fairer students deemed it to be, and the less of in-depth learning, the poorer the grades. The higher the ambitions, and the more active and hardworking, the better the grades. Academic success factors included an ability to keep pace with progression, and a commitment to advance learning. The minimal impact of interventions appears as surprising; however, this study brings perspectives to make sense of such data, also capable of producing greater future successes.
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