A review of the ‘First-year college performance’ research article
A review of the ‘First-year college performance’ research article. When students join colleges and universities, various issues affect their performance. Their performance may either improve or deteriorate. Parents are faced with the problem of choosing between home education and public school education. This research article discusses the various issues that contribute to each decision made by various parents and guardians. It begins with the recent past, within the past thirty years, whereby there has been a significant growth of parents opting to educate their children at home than enrolling them to public schools (Gloeckner, 2007). The research points out the estimated number of these students was 1.6 million and is estimated to grow by seven percent by the end of the year. it means that by 2010, the number had grown to about three million. It is possible to review the truth behind this research, including any failures and accomplishments involved. The research method used, the research beneficiaries to education, as well as its role in educational psychology, will be analyzed as well.
The research background talks of past difficulties in education that are related to the current trends in education, such as the legal issues in education and the pressure behind parents’ choice to train their children at home. It also talks of the statistics on facts such as the initial state and the associated growth in the number of children enrolled in public schools versus those educated at home (Gloeckner, 2007). There is also a discussion on the legal issues associated with such trends in education throughout the United States. There is a subject of home advocates challenging the existing regulations by both the school board officials and the state police officials. The irony is that the same advocates had passed through public colleges and universities but are centrally advocating something they have no experience in (Gloeckner, 2007). There is no religious point of view on the subject.
The research goes on to point out other studies that prove home school students and graduates to be better than their public school counterparts. Such evidence argues that home schoolchildren do better in several exams that are nationally standardized than their peers in public schools. Such generalized exams include Iowa basic skills test and Stanford Achievement Tests. This happens at almost all grade levels. These are late use of the primary variable of the research (Bartle, 2012).
The first-year performance in academic exams was a significant subject in the research. Conducting three empirical studies, it focused on correcting the fact that policymakers in education and the higher education board had little knowledge about the home education positive side. An instance is the outperformance of public school college students by their peers in home-schooling colleges in an ACT English subject. In another aspect of the empirical studies, home college students performed better than Fulltime College students in mathematics and reading. This was done in an Academic Skill Program in Texas. The third empirical test was based on insignificant differences between home college students and their peers in traditional schools, both in public and private colleges. A test done on an English test showed all poor and excellent performance extremes in both categories (Gloeckner, 2007).
The study was mainly purposed to determine the differences between traditional high school graduates and home school graduates (Gloeckner, 2007). The primary tools used were measures in grades, point averages, credits, ACT Scores, and point averages.
It was a descriptive qualitative type of research that would describe the strengths and weaknesses of each side of the argument. It generated various null hypotheses that would determine the differences between the home school graduates and the high school graduates. The null hypotheses were based on grade point averages, college retention for the first-year students, credit hours earned, and ACT Tests scores in English, mathematics, reading, science, and reasoning, and first-year grade average points. It consisted of a random sample of 53 students from Colorado and 53 students randomly chosen from homes schooling students. This means it incorporated some quantitative research methods (Bartle, 2012).
In data collection, test scores were used. This included tests in English, Mathematics, reading, Science, and reasoning, as well as basic skills tests. This was done in phases, with the first phase consisting of first-year students and their academic performance. This was done by measuring their point averages first, seconded by cases of retention, and then the credits earned. The ACT score was the most effective (Bartle, 2012). This was as well evident in past research.
In analyzing the research finding, a thorough comparison was made between the performance of the home-schooling students and students in the traditional high colleges sampled from Colorado College. The four dependent variables used to measure the findings were grade point averages, ACT scores, retention, and credits earned. This was done on the sampled students during their first college education year. The variables were used to give any statistical evidence of the differences between the two groups of students (Bartle, 2012). The secondary variables established in the study were people diversity such as gender, religion, race, and ethnicity, and the type of college, university, or middle-level college.
Results of the research
The research found that there were no significant differences between home school students and college students concerning the primary variable, which included point averages, retention rates, and credit scores. It was also found that race never affected students’ performance, whether in traditional colleges or schooling at home. At some point, the home students showed statistical significance in performance in the science and reasoning tests. It means that despite the study location, a student may not be affected very much by the environment, although socializing with other students of various diversities is essential.
The findings stand as an encouragement to students who do their schooling at home. Parents of these students should also gain the courage that their children are not absorbing inferior education. The research results were found to show higher scores by home-schooling students in almost all categories (Tynjälä, 2012). There could be reasons behind these, especially moral issues such as peer influence and involvement in bad ethical practices. The home school graduates were proven equally ready for college as high school graduates. Therefore, it is necessary to support homeschooling religiously and politically (Tynjälä, 2012).
Research plays a major role in educational psychology. People’s minds concerning education quality and student performance are doomed in the research. Most researchers had no clue of the possibility that home-schooling students could be at any aspect better than it is the case with those in traditional schools and colleges. Their perspective of thinking forgets about other disadvantages associated with the traditional schooling system, such as poor moral practices such as drug abuse and sexual immorality, among others that could result in poor academic performance. The research shows that education requires a settled mind that is fully set for acquiring knowledge and innovations (Tynjälä, 2012). A student can get educational knowledge from any environment provided they are willing to absorb such kind of knowledge. This is the major reason behind the existence of no significant difference between traditional high school graduates in the United States and home school graduates of the same category in the same country.
Bartle, P. (2012, July 13). RESEARCH METHODS:Various Kinds. Retrieved October 25, 2012, from Kinds of Research Methods: http://cec.vcn.bc.ca/cmp/modules/rsh-krm.htm
Gloeckner, P. J. (2007). Sample Article from the Mensa research Journal. Retrieved October 25, 2012, from MRJ Sample Article: http://www.mensafoundation.org/what-we-do/mensa-research-journal/mrj-sample-article/
Tynjälä, P. (2012). Educational Research Review. The Journal of the European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI) Volume 7, Issue 2 , 79-164.