Examining the Relation Between High School Science Coursework and Performance in College Chemistry

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Title: Examining the Relation Between High School Science Coursework and Performance in College Chemistry
Author: Clark, LaKisha Rhea
Abstract: Recent studies have demonstrated a clear gap between the skills that high school graduates obtain by the completion of high school and those that are necessary for success in college as well as the workforce. Demands for more rigorous preparation at the high school level have prompted some states to make changes to state standards and high school graduation requirements. This dissertation used a prediction study to examine the coursetaking patterns of high school students in science and their subsequent success in chemistry 1A at the college level. Analysis of obtained data using a two-way ANOVA was used to estimate the main effects of (a) number of semesters of science courses and (b) the type of science courses and (c) the interaction effect on college performance as indicated by the final course grade. The results of this study indicate that the main effect of type and the main effect of number of semesters are both significant statistically. Taking more semesters of science in high school is positively associated with the final grade in first-year college chemistry. Taking higher level science coursework in high school is also positively associated with final grade. The interaction of type by number of semesters is not significant, however. Taking more semesters of higher level science coursework does not increase the likelihood of doing well in college chemistry, as there is no observable significant influence on final grade in chemistry, beyond the main effects described previously.
Description: xi, 73 p. : ill.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1794/11966
Date: 2011-09


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