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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

"Self matters": Self-concept and higher education: An exploration of student self-concept and motivations within a community college
by Riordan, Kevin M., Ed.D., University of Pennsylvania, 2015, 93; 3721063
Abstract (Summary)

This study investigates the different levels of confidence, motivation, and self-concept of several student populations at one community college. The existing literature on the subject of self-concept describes a multi-dimensional and complex phenomenon that is sometimes overlooked when assessing students’ higher education needs. Student self-perceptions and motivations, however, are based on the sum total of experiences a student’s experiences. They represent a measurement of aptitude not currently addressed by most standardized instruments. What self-concept offers is a better understanding of what students believe their capabilities are and possible pathways to success.

Through the use of mean comparisons and blocked-entry regression models, several differences in motivations, ability, and self-concept levels among various group comparisons were identified. Differences in mean cumulative G.P.A. performance were examined by gender, race/ethnicity, college readiness, and other student success categories. An interesting case of possible variable suppression was found in one of the models examining student leadership self-concept, and this should be examined in future studies of the concept.

Understanding individual academic and social self-concept levels could improve the success of tailored or customized curricula and student services in higher education. A combination of individual and custom approaches is recommended in order to address the unique needs of individuals and targeted populations. Self-concept variables provide educators data that could be extremely powerful in assessing the academic needs of minorities, first-generation, traditional, non-traditional, and at-risk students.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Moneta, Larry
Commitee: Armacost, Mary-Linda, Joseph, Harriet
School: University of Pennsylvania
Department: Higher Education Management
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 77/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Higher education
Keywords: Academic self-concept, Self-concept, Self-perception, Student motivation
Publication Number: 3721063
ISBN: 978-1-339-02315-1
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