Entry Qualifications of Students as Predictors of Academic Performance in Various Degree Programs in Distance Education setting in Pakistan

Nauman A. Abdullah, Munawar S. Mirza

Abstract


Academic performance of students has always been the area of concern for educational institutions as it is a key indicator of institutional quality. In order to have a better quality output the higher education institutions set some admission criteria such as scores on specified international standardized tests, previous academic qualifications, and admission tests of students or a combination of such scores. Virtual University of Pakistan (VU) is a technology-based distance learning institution that facilitates students who are unable to attend traditional institutions of higher education for a variety of reasons. It was of interest to the researchers to study the entry qualifications of students i.e. the admission criteria, as predictor of their academic performance in various degree programs at VU. For that purpose, the data of 5825 graduates in different two years masters programs in 2015-16 were taken as sample. The entry qualifications of students, and cumulative scores of their previous academic qualifications were taken as predictors of their performance i.e. cumulative grade point average (CGPA,) in relevant degree program. Descriptive (range, percentage) and inferential (pearson r, multiple regression) statistics were applied after grouping the students into low, average and high achievers on cumulative scores as well as entry qualification scores. The results showed significant differences in the predictions and their implications are useful for policy makers and relevant departments of the university as well as for other distance learning educational institutions.


Keywords


Entry qualifications; academic performance; distance education; cumulative scores; Pakistan

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.10.3.848

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