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school effectiveness individual factors perception of achievement teacher attitude

Student Perception of Academic Achievement Factors at High School

Mustafa Bahar

Measuring the quality of the ‘product’ is elemental in education, and most studies depend on observational data about student achievement .

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Measuring the quality of the ‘product’ is elemental in education, and most studies depend on observational data about student achievement factors, focusing overwhelmingly on quantitative data namely achievement scores, school data like attendance, facilities, expenditure class size etc. But there is little evidence of learner perceptions. 553 students from two different universities, who graduated from 3 high school types, were asked to respond to two fundamental questions to reflect on school and classroom level achievement factors. 2294 responses produced eight categories in question one, teacher factors being the most preferred (n=424), followed by individual factors (n=404) and then family factors (n=395). As for liking towards a course, 1362 responses were produced, most frequent one being teacher’s attitude (n=205). Results indicate student perspective of causes of achievement is somewhat different from those expressed in quantitative studies. Girls attributed more achievement to study habits, family support whereas boys attributed more to school and technology. More emphasis is needed on perceived achievement factors for a sound evaluation of effectiveness in school.

Keywords: School effectiveness, individual factors, perception of achievement, teacher attitude

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