Increase Student Retention and Decrease Attrition


The purpose of this chapter is to provide a summary as well as an interpretation from research findings of the secondary data, by books, journal articles, reports, electronic databases and websites in order to drown the literature. In addition, an in-depth analysis of the roles and purpose of the HR in organizations in general will be included, how different institution like Manchester university, Maharashi, Kingston and Sydney Universities assists in the increasing of retention and how they help to decrease attrition. Moreover, the research is concentrated on the motivation approaches in universities. Finally, some information about the retention and attrition in student growth will be given.

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This chapter is very helpful in increasing the knowledge relative to the studying area since the results and the findings of the primary data will be related with the literature review. Therefore, the knowledge from literature review is going to provide a more professional research that will focus on the purpose of this research. Also, the purpose of this is to offer an overview of significant information published on the topic in order to narrow down the research questions to a specific, suitable form.

Community College Increase Student Retention and Decrease Attrition

According to the educationist group widening contribution is a key UK college strategy in which students are taken in from social groups or communities that have not customarily entered higher education. Whilst mainly institutes will welcome an innovative source of students, they distinguish that these students are likely to have dissimilar learning skills/expectations and research suggests they are probable to require additional support if they are to achieve something. As a key Loughborough University target is to get better retention rates, there has to be a commitment to ensuring high-quality student sequence. The main aim for the programme is to have 50% of 18-30 years olds in higher teaching (Loughborough University, 1).

The major aim is categorized into three sublimations:

  1. To make quantifiable growth towards widened participation, with no increasing student non-completion, as maintaining standards of excellence and recognising and construction on institutional strengths and variety.
  2. To encourage new sources of student demand and regulate supply accordingly.
  3. To develop opportunities for all students during lifelong learning.

Departments will require suitable learning, teaching and evaluation strategies as well support systems to deal with the increasing variety of the student intake. For instance the Engineering academics, at Loughborough University, have already had to deal with the deteriorating maths skills of students. It is clear that widening contribution should not associate to a lowering of standards. Higher education institutes will have to face the increasing confrontation of educating an increasingly assorted student group efficiently whilst maintaining the productivity standards that the occupation demands.

Increasing retention is not about reducing standards. The Higher Education Funding Council for England aim to maintain standards by enabling higher teaching institutes with a chiefly tough commitment to increase retention to build and strengthen their activities, by ensuring that they obtain enough funding to cover the supplementary costs of these and of supporting student achievement. In 2003-04 the Higher Education Funding Council increased the whole allocation to institutions for increase retention and prerequisite for disabled students to $265 million. In 2005-06 they committed $282 million, and if funds are available they will seek to increase this in future years. (HEFCE, 2)

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Increased retention is not simply a matter of provided that more places. The Loughborough University will have to labour to augment demand for Higher Education, and to support improved sequence from schools and further teaching into the sector. This is being tackled in teamwork with the Learning and Skills Council and other partners. Schools, colleges and Higher education institutes crossways England are working together to help raise aspirations and achievement under the Aimhigher brand.

Foundation degrees are playing a significant part both as the major vehicle for continuing growth and in increasing retention. The aim is to make these programmes accessible, elastic and relevant to career needs, with smooth change onward to honours degrees. The Loughborough University wish to encourage participation by part-time and mature students. They are working by means of the Learning and Skills Council, expert bodies, and others to endorse wider participation by adults in lifelong learning, counting from end to end vocational qualifications and agency learning. (HEFCE, 2)

There are lots of higher teaching institutes, like Mid-Kent college and the University of Kent, that have already started to put into practice the increase retention strategy by focusing on one or more of the aspire discussed. Mid-Kent College has as one of its key tactical aims the increase of retention by increasing enrolment in identified target groups by means of low participation. No doubt, the College runs a project purposeful on consciousness raising of key personnel in community and voluntary groups. The College works in business with assorted organisations in order to increase retention in education: in exacting it is a member of the Partnership with Purpose initiative aimed at the improvement of learning in the community from fundamental skills level to higher teaching entry. (Mid-Kent College Strategic Plan 2001-2004). The University of Kent and Mid-Kent College are partners in the growth of a Higher Education campus in Medway (University of Kent, p. 4).

There is also a fear that the beyond aims do not go as planned, the key risks for attaining this tactical objectives are:

  1. That there is inadequate extra demand for higher education places from 18-30 year-olds to meet the contribution target by 2010, through aspirations and achievement not being raised adequately.
  2. That the participation objective can be achieved by 2010, but that there is no, or inadequate, boost in representation from the under-represented socio-economic groups.
  3. That the supply of places shaped to meet the contribution target does not match the demand from students, in terms of height or mode or location. So there is a fifty-fifty chance that the widening participation plan will fail or succeed. Though the key question to ask is that do we really require this policy in place?

The strategy has its pros and cons, the optimistic points would be that there would be additional participation in higher teaching, consequently a more “educated” community. Though by doing so the standards and prospect from Trainer’s would turn out to be more demanding, i.e. people will require a degree to have any group of job, from being a doctor working at a rehearsal to working at your restricted book store, Waterstones. I believe that policy as good as its intentions are, will cause a financial crisis, as Trainer’s demands increase, student’s demands would also augment (pay raise). This in turn would cause prices to soar and increase at an exponential rate.

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Retention an overview

No doubt, young generation today is confronted with an environment of constant modifies and rapid shifts. Technology has distorted the extremely nature of trade and this had really influenced the career market. Jobs requiring proficiency and technological skills are growing in nearly each sector of the financial system. The continuous modify in what students require to know and be talented to handle suggests that learning, training and teaching will occur over the length of a vocation and, in fact, a life span. In light of this, adults have had to turn into life-long learners by every time challenging themselves to pursue learning occasion.

Furthermore, thus, a large and growing segment of the education industry extra so for the post graduate courses are made of “non-traditional” students. These are operational adults who are interested in ornamental their job skills, retooling for new positions and careers, and pursuing additional customised learning experiences. By means of the changing trend in the career market, higher learning institutions are knowledge increased demand for a better variety of rapid paced instructive resource alternative for the adult learning community.

Though, one of the greatest challenges faced by advanced learning institutions is identifying instructional or release methods that enhance adult learning procedure. Thus the objective of any higher learning institutions ought to be to provide and establish learning objectives which are within reach by students and to use the appropriate instructional method in order that these objectives are met. This paper will discover the opportunities obtainable for functioning adults to further their studies and also recognize the instructional methods in delivering lessons.

From an academic perspective, retention is still a relatively new term that is struggling to gain credibility and sit alongside more established disciplines. Nowadays, the college departments are necessary for each student. By having student comunity, organisations can increase their performance and create competitive advantage. It is often contrasted with ‘industrial relations’ and ‘personnel management’, the former laying claim to represent the theoretical basis of the subject while the latter is viewed as the practical and prescriptive homeland for issues concerning the management of career.

As readers of this research, you are a diverse group with varied backgrounds and goals. Some of you are beginning your education at a college or university like California university, Harvard, oxford, Kingston and Columbia University, whereas others of you have selected community colleges. Some of you may have taken college courses last term, whereas others are returning to school after an absence. Some of you are taking a learning and study skills course because it is required, whereas others are enrolled in the course as an elective. Some of you are looking forward to taking the course, whereas others may doubt its usefulness. Although I recognize the wide range of interests, motivation, and abilities of those of you reading this research, I have one goal: to help all those who read this volume become more successful learners. Once you learn “how to learn,” you can apply these skills to any academic or work setting in which you participate.

Who is a successful learner? Most of us know, read about, or have observed successful and expert individuals in some field or profession (e.g., a plumber, musician, athlete, teacher, or artist). These individuals have special knowledge and skills in a particular field. Similarly, successful learners also possess special knowledge and skills that differentiate them from less successful learners.

Successful students are not simply individuals who know more than others. They also have more effective and efficient learning strategies for accessing and using their knowledge, can motivate themselves, and can monitor and change their behaviors when learning does not occur.

What Is Academic Self-Management in UK Universities?

At one time it was thought that intelligence was the main factor determining academic success. After years of research in learning and motivation, educators have found that students can learn how to become more successful learners by using appropriate strategies to manage their motivation, behavior, and learning.

The word management is a key term in understanding successful learners. They self-manage or control the factors influencing their learning in such institutions. They establish best conditions for learning and take away obstacles that get in the method with their learning. Educators use a variety of terms to describe these students. No matter what term is used, the important factor is that these students find a way to learn. It does not matter if the instructor is a poor lecturer, the text research is confusing, the test is difficult, the room is noisy, or if multiple exams are scheduled for the same week; successful learners find a way to excel.

Steps for Increasing Retention

Adults today are confronted with an environment of constant modify and rapid shifts. Technology has altered the extremely nature of commerce and this had deeply influenced the career market. Jobs requiring proficiency and technological skills are growing in nearly each sector of the financial system. The incessant change in what students require to know and be clever to handle suggests that learning, training and learning will occur over the length of a career and, in fact, a lifetime. In light of this, adults have had to turn into life-long learners by time after time challenging themselves to follow learning opportunities.

Thus, a great and growing segment of the teaching industry additional so for the post accommodate courses are made of “non-traditional” students. These are operational adults who are interested in ornamental their job skills, retooling for new location and careers, and pursuing additional customised learning experiences. By means of the changing tendency in the career market, higher learning institutions are experiencing increased insist for a larger diversity of express paced instructive resource options for the adult learning community.

Though, one of the most challenges faced by higher learning institutions is recognize instructional or release methods that get better adult learning procedure. Thus the objective of any higher learning institutions is supposed to be to give and establish learning objectives which are within reach by students and to use the suitable instructional method in order that these objectives are met. Moreover, this paper will travel around the opportunities obtainable for working adults to further their studies and also recognize the instructional methods in delivering lessons.

Appraisal for Performance

The move to make appraisal a required part of teachers and head teacher’s specialized duties should come as no surprise to the occupation. Rather appraisal ought to be viewed as:

  • A positive procedure intended to raise the excellence of education in schools by providing teachers by means of improved job satisfaction added suitable in-service training, and improved career growth.
  • A continued and methodical procedure intended to assist teachers with their own professional growth and career planning, and a means of ensuring the in-service training and growth of teachers matches the balancing needs of individual teachers and schools.

Goals and Goal Setting

Have you used terms such as aim, aspiration, purpose, or intent? These are terms we often hear that imply goal setting. Goals have been defined simply as “something that the person wants to achieve” ( Locke & Latham, 1990, p. 2). “Goal setting theory assumes that human action is directed by conscious goals and intentions” (Locke & Latham, 1990, p. 4). There is an important distinction flanked by goal setting theory and goal compass reading (chap. 3). Goal setting refers to a exact outcome that an entity is striving to achieve, while goal orientation refers to a type of goal direction or underlying purpose behind the strived-for goal (Dweck, 1992). The focus of this research is on the importance of goal setting for achievement outcomes.

A coach would not think of starting a season without emphasizing both team and individual goals. Goals are a standard component of many, if not most, student evaluation criteria. What about goal setting in classroom learning? Although teachers have goals in mind, how often are these made explicit? How often are students encouraged to set goals for themselves? From a motivational viewpoint, goals and goal setting play a central role in self-regulation (Schutz, 1991). Goal setting influences learning and motivation by providing a target and information about how well one is doing. This research describes types of goals, the motivational effects of goals, the properties of goals that enhance motivation, the relationship between goals and feedback, and applications of goal setting to the educational settings.

Developing Student Self-Regulatory Capabilities

The content of this research focuses on the personal ability wanted for motivation to learn. Empowerment, self-agency, self-motivation, and self-determination are terms used to describe the personal capabilities that facilitate students to be self-governing learners and develop a core of resiliency. A framework for the growth of personal capabilities is self-regulation. This refers to the degree to which persons are energetic participants in their own information, characterized by their goal-directedness and self-initiated actions that connect self-control (Zimmerman, 1994).

Self-Regulatory Capabilities and Academic Success

How much do capabilities such as concentration, self-discipline, effort, determination, and patience contribute to a student’s academic success? To what extent does the absence of these qualities contribute to a student’s academic failure? The contrast between two first-grade students illustrates the importance of these qualities for school success (Greenspan & Lodish, 1991).

Teacher Motivation: Expectations and Efficacy

How does a teachers’ self-assurance affect their teaching put into practice and student motivation and attainment? This research focuses on two related areas that reflect teacher confidence: teacher prospect and teacher effectiveness. Teacher expectations deal with what teachers wait for students will be able to achieve. Teacher effectiveness refers to a teacher’s self-assurance about teaching in a way that can bring concerning student attainment.

Teacher Expectations

Since the publication of Robert Rosenthal and Lenore Jacobson’s ( 1968) Pygmalion in the Classroom, the topic of teacher prospect and self-fulfilling prophecy has been of great attention and argument. The Rosenthal-Jacobson research was designed to influence teacher expectations and settle on if these manipulations exaggerated student achievement. Students were given a general attainment test, but teachers were told that it was a test that would recognize certain students as late bloomers students who would make big attainment gains during the year.

Transition from Kingston High School and College

One of the major differences in the transition from Kingston high school to college classrooms is the change from a teacher-directed to a student-directed environment. In high school, many teachers tend to guide students’ learning by telling them what, when, and how to learn. For example, when assignments are given, high school teachers frequently help students manage the tasks necessary to complete the assignment such as requiring outlines or drafts of papers. In college, students are on their own! They can ask questions and obtain more information about an assignment, but rarely does a college instructor monitor students’ progress. In college, students are expected to manage their own learning.

Dissimilarity between high school and college is that high school teachers often spend considerable time attempting to motivate students to learn, whereas college instructors generally expect students to be self-motivated. Although students are told about the demands of college, a lot of freshmen experience “culture shock” when they enter learning environments that differ from their history experiences.

Steps for Decreasing Attrition

The hypothesis that defines the relationship linking social class and instructive achievement is frequently misinterpreted by many. It is frequently perceived that there is only the black and white theory that defines this association. This hypothesis claims that; the additional advantaged families will send their children to non-government schools, and the less privileged families will send their children to government schools. Though current studies have offered a new stance on the matter, proving this black and white viewpoint to be incorrect to a sure extent. In 1994, it was recorded that 22% of families in the smallest income quintile, were able to send their own children to a non-government school. Similarly, an astounding 60% of families in the uppermost income quintile were sending their children to government schools. This point to social morbidity

It was recorded that 23% of parents who get hold of expert occupations (such as doctors in addition to lawyers), were in fact sending their child to a government school. Only 28% of that expert was sending their child to a non-government, broad school. The other 45.7% were sending their child to one more private school. In spite of the fact that 41% of parents who worked as physical labourers sent their youngster to a government school, there was an elevated 27.6% who were sending their child to a non-government school, which is only 1% inferior to those of the uppermost quintile. This proves that approximately as lots of students from a lower class family have the occasion to attend a non-government school.

It is an understandable, well known fact that the mainstream of elite non-government schools is tremendously costly, and much more expensive when compared to government schools. Though the price of private schooling isn’t as costly as many observe it to be, on average, it still costs approximately $3,500 to send one student to a non-government school per year. Considering that the proportion of students attending non government schools are from fairly rich backgrounds, it seems as although this would be a great disadvantage for students from a lower class communal background, as this kind of money may well be near not possible for the mainstream of lower class families.

Current studies offer the statistics that, private school students have a five percent higher graduation rate than public schools students, and are 1.5 times as likely to apply for entry to post-secondary teaching.

No doubt, private schools tend to choose their pupils. This may be done in advance via the fees that not everybody can afford, while state schools must, by law, enrol all who seek entry. By means of governments eager to use schools to disguise constant youth uncareer, it is tremendously hard for them to rid students whom they would not rather have.

The mainstream of elite, non-government schools, recruit their students mostly from the top section of social class, and are seen as trail into such prestigious professions such as Law and Medicine. usually, turnout at a best private school has meant that a pupil is much more likely to attend university and to be conventional into prestigious faculties, compared to a student who be present at a state school.

Attribution Beliefs and Motivation

When students like Sylvia lack confidence, a common response by teachers is to help them attain success on a task, as in the example. Although Sylvia has a successful experience, she still lacks confidence. What is the explanation for Sylvia’s continuing low confidence? The motivation theory that can provide insight into Sylvia’s response is attribution theory. Attribution is a cognitive theory that considers a person’s beliefs about causes of outcomes and how those beliefs influence expectations and behavior.

Concepts of Ability and Motivation can Decrease Attrition

The main concern of this research is students’ perceptions and evaluations of their ability and how it affects their motivation. In every feature of life, whether people are thinking about trying out for a play or an athletic team, perturbing concerning taking a test, applying for a job, comparing themselves to additional people, or deciding what courses to take, they are evaluating their ability. How students evaluate their aptitude has important implications for their expectancies for success in prospect tasks.

Why Are Some Students Less Successful Learners?

When I discuss reasons for low achievement, I am not including students who have serious learning disabilities, poor language skills, or who have experienced an inadequate education due to factors beyond their control. Instead, I am referring to students who should be achieving higher than their present performance. In many cases, more than one explanation may be appropriate for a given student.

Why Are Some Students Less Successful Learners?

When I discuss reasons for low achievement, I am not together with students who have solemn learning disabilities, poor language skills, or who have experienced an insufficient teaching due to factors beyond their control. As an alternative, I am referring to students who should be attaining higher than their present performance. In many cases, more than one clarification may be suitable for a given student.

They Hold Faulty Beliefs About Their Ability, Learning, and Motivation

Students’ beliefs regarding learning and motivation pressure their behaviors. The subsequent beliefs can impact attainment: If students consider they are less able than others, they may spend substantial time using failure-avoiding policy in the classroom (e.g., trying not to be called on; copying material from friends; and appearing to be trying hard, when they actually are not). Other students who believe they can attain are more likely to spend their time using well-organized learning and study strategies, and tend to persevere longer on hard tasks.

Some students consider that ability or cleverness is fixed. That is, people are born by means of a certain amount of aptitude and there is not much that can be done concerning it. This misperception often causes some students to believe their low attainment or to turn out to be satisfied with a “B” or “C” average, thinking that only the brightest students get an “A.” Psychologists have found that cleverness is the result of how much information students know and the strategies they use to manage their thoughts and learning. In other words, “smart students” do not possess aptitude that additional students cannot learn. “Smart students” study more efficiently than additional students. If other students learn and use these similar methods, they turn out to be “smart!”

It is unlucky that many students go from side to side school thinking they are not good learners and that little can be done to get better their attainment. This faulty faith often remains with individuals all through their lives and limits their goals and ambition. The difficulty is not that these students are unable of being winning learners, they simply have not been taught how to study and learn efficiently.

They Are Unaware of Their Ineffective Learning Behavior

Many students believe that if they simply spend a good deal of time studying, they will be successful. Successful learners do work hard, but they realize that how they study is more important than how much time they spend studying. For example, many college students report that they spend considerable time reading a research many times before an examination. Some students are not aware that the practice of underlining (highlighting) words and phrases in text researches and simply rereading are generally unproductive learning strategies because they are comparatively passive activities linking little thinking. It is possible to spend considerable time underlining or rereading a research and still not remember many of the important ideas presented. Reading and remembering are two different tasks. Unless students are actively involved in outlining, organizing, questioning themselves, and/or summarizing the material while they read, much of the time is wasted ( Cortina, Elder, & Gonnet, 1992).

They Fail to Sustain Effective Learning and Motivational Strategies

Students usually take more exams and quizzes in high school. Therefore, if they score well on most of the evaluations, but low on one or two, they can still maintain a high grade. In college, the situation is different. Fewer evaluations are given throughout the term. For example, a course may require a paper, two exams, and a final; each evaluation may involve 20% to 30% of the final grade. Students who want high grades cannot afford to let down during the semester.

Many students demonstrate the knowledge of how to learn and do well at times, but fail to attend class regularly, do not keep up with their assignments, and in general, get behind in their work. Although these students have the potential for doing well, they cannot sustain their motivation and effort throughout the term. The end result is lower academic performance.

Motivation Approaches by Manchester University

“Each semester I write down goals that I want to attain.” “When I feel down, I talk to myself to motivate me to keep on task.”

Although there are a lot of dissimilar ways to define motivation, the approach taken in this research views motivation as the interior processes that give behavior its energy and direction. These internal procedures comprise your goals, beliefs, perceptions, and expectations. For instance, your perseverance on a task is often related to how competent you consider you are to total the task. Also, your beliefs about the causes of your successes and failures on present tasks pressure your motivation and behavior on future tasks. For instance, students who attribute failure to lack of aptitude behave in a different way from students who attribute breakdown to lack of effort.

A number of significant motivational self-management techniques can be used to develop and maintain these significant beliefs. The first is goal setting. Educational research indicates that high achievers report using goal setting more often and more time after time than low achievers ( Zimmerman & Martinez-Pons, 1986). When individuals set up and attempt to attain personal goals, they are more attentive to instruction, expend better effort, and increase their confidence when they see themselves making development. It is difficult to be motivated to attain without having specific goals.

More elaborate self-talk preparation programs are available to help individuals control nervousness, mood, and other touching responses (e.g., Butler, 1981; Ottens, 1991). These programs are based on the faith that what one says to one’s self is an significant factor in determining attitudes, feelings, feeling, and behaviors. This speech or self-talk is the organization dialogue within our heads. a number of our speech motivates us to try new tasks and persist in hard situations; other self-talk is infertile and inhibits our motivation to succeed. The goal of these programs is to change unenthusiastic self-talk to positive self-talk. Research 5 describes this process in more feature.

One more motivational self-management technique is position or imagining rewards or sentence for success or breakdown at an academic task. Students who control their motivation by giving themselves rewards and sentence outperform students who do not use this control method.

In summary, to control your motivation, you need to set goals; develop positive beliefs about your ability to perform academic tasks; and maintain these beliefs while faced with the many disturbances, distractions, occasional failure experiences, and periodic interpersonal conflicts in your life. You will have difficulty managing your behavior if you do not have confidence in your ability to succeed. In turn, you develop confidence in your ability by learning how to use different learning and study strategies that lead to academic success.

Methods of Learning

Another term for methods of learning is learning strategies. Learning strategies are the methods students use to acquire information. Higher achieving students use more learning strategies than do lower achieving students ( Zimmerman & Martinez-Pons, 1988). Underlining, summarizing, and outlining are examples of learning strategies. You will learn in research 2 that different learning strategies serve different purposes.

Self-Efficacy Influences In Academic Tasks

Self-efficacy judgments, whether accurate or inaccurate, help determine (a) which activities to take on and which to keep away from, and (b) how much attempt we will use and how long we will persist in the face of obstruction ( Bandura, 1986). We are more likely to undertake tasks we consider we have the skills to handle, but avoid tasks we believe need greater skills than we possess. For instance, students who have doubts about their math aptitude are likely to avoid taking math courses at whatever time possible. In addition, the stronger the self-efficacy, the harder individuals will try to accomplish a task. This is chiefly significant when facing difficulties ( Bandura, 1986). Individuals with physically powerful self-efficacy are less likely to give up than are those who are paralyzed with doubts concerning their capabilities. How the belief one holds about aptitude influences strategies was illustrate in a study by Collins (as cited in Bandura, 1993). Collins chosen children at low, medium, and high levels of math aptitude and gave them hard problems to solve. In each aptitude group, there were children who were confident about their math ability and those who had self-doubts. Children’s beliefs about their capability, not their actual ability, proved to be the factor that differentiated the problem solving strategies used by children in each group. Confident children chose to rework more problems and were quicker to abandon ineffective strategies than were children who had doubts about ability. In fact, perceived self-efficacy was a better predictor of positive attitudes toward mathematics than was actual ability. This confirmed that self-efficacy is not just a reflection of one’s ability, but the beliefs one holds about that ability. As Bandura ( 1993) pointed out, people may perform poorly either because (a) they lack the skills, or (b) they have the skills, but lack the confidence that will allow them to use them well. The level of self-efficacy is a key aspect in self-regulatory strategies used by students. Examples of research findings are:

  • Students with advanced self-efficacy set higher goals and expend additional attempt toward the attainment of these goals ( Zimmerman, Bandura, & Martinez-Pons, 1992).
  • Academic self-efficacy augment in subject areas as student’s progress through school ( Zimmerman & Martinez-Pons, 1990).

Think concerning the large array of tools a plumber brings to every job. If he arrived at jobs by only a few wrenches or pliers, he would not be able to total many jobs. Just like there are different tools for dissimilar jobs, there are dissimilar learning strategies for dissimilar academic tasks ( Levin, 1986). Triumphant learners also require a large number of “tools” to make schoolwork easier and to augment the likelihood of their success. For instance, knowing how to use maps or symbol to organize information and generate and answer questions from notes and textresearchs are significant learning tools. Many students who have complexity learning in school attribute their difficulty to a lack of ability when the difficulty actually may be that they have never been correctly taught how to learn. Some students use one or two main learning strategies for all tasks in all courses. These students frequently do not have the necessary tools to learn the multifaceted material they encounter in the courses they are necessary to take. For instance, on exams, a lot of instructors ask questions relating to topics that they did not in a straight line discuss in lectures. Students must be able to organize and look at notes so they are prepared to answer questions such as: “How does the government consequence the allocation of resources through tax policy?” or “Why does the temperature of the water influence the speed of sound?”

The plumbing instance can be used to provide a practical instance of understanding the relation flanked by learning and motivation. I am going to admit amazing: I don’t have confidence in my aptitude to do many household chores. So, I procrastinate, fail to buy tools that could help me total tasks, and don’t pay much attention when friends try to give details how I can be a winning handyman.

You cannot become a successful learner merely by acquiring new learning and study skills. You also must deal with your motivation (i.e., beliefs and perceptions) regarding a task. Even if you know how to use an effective strategy, you may not be motivated to use it. Some educators (e.g., Paris, 1988) describe these two important components of learning as the skill (i.e., learning strategies) and will (i.e., the motivation to use strategies).

Strengthening Self-Efficacy

What is known about strengthening self-efficacy? A range of strategies that can be used by teachers to enhance self-efficacy have been identified ( Schunk, 1991a). Strategies that teachers can use to influence self-efficacy include: (a) goals and feedback, (b) rewards, (c) self-instruction for verbalization of strategies, (d) participant modeling, and (e) various combinations of these strategies. Keep in mind that self-efficacy, skill development, and strategy use go hand in hand whether it be math problem solving, soccer skills, or expository writing. Students learn strategies that enable them to develop skills resulting in greater than before self-efficacy.

Goals, Feedback, Rewards, and Verbalization

Because task accomplishment is the most powerful source of self-efficacy information, an important approach is to use strategies that can strengthen task accomplishment. The strategies of goal setting, feedback, rewards, and self-talk or verbalization were used in various combinations to help students categorized as learning disabled or remedial to strengthen self-efficacy.

According to Schunk and Cox ( 1986) investigate the combination of policy verbalization and effort feedback on the presentation and self-efficacy of students with learning disabilities. While solving subtraction problems, students verbalized or said the task steps aloud to themselves; they were then given feedback that their successes were due to their effort. The combination of verbalization and effort-feedback led to problem-solving successes, higher self-efficacy, and totaling skills. The authors consider the two strategies verbalization and attempt feedback serve dissimilar purposes. Verbalization was useful for preparation students to methodically use the task strategy. Giving students feedback that effort is accountable for success communicated that they are mounting skills and that they can carry on to perform well with hard work.

The importance of feedback for enhancing self-efficacy may sometimes be overlooked by a teacher. Pajares and Johnson ( 1994) conducted a study in a language arts course for preservice teachers. The students received feedback from their teacher on attempting and implementation writing tasks, but they did not take delivery of feedback on their specific writing skills. The end of course appraisal revealed that although the students better on writing skills, their self-efficacy

The Six Components of Academic Self-Management

The following example is how one student, Josh, exhibited self-management behavior in each of the components just discussed: Josh’s goal was to join the debate team during the second term of his freshman year. He believed he could attain his goal by expending effort (motivation) in preparing for the tryouts. He first decided to study the topics that would dominate the debate season by reading magazine and newspaper articles (methods of learning). He then decided to practice his arguments with another friend (social environment) who also was interested in joining the team. They decided to reserve space at the speech clinic two evenings each week (time management) and use the available recording equipment (physical environment) to videotape their presentations and spend time critiquing themselves (performance).

Would Josh and his friend be successful if they failed to manage one or more factors influencing learning? Perhaps so, but we really do not know. For example, could they have been as successful practicing their arguments in their dorm rooms or whenever they found some time to meet, or without the recording machine? Could Josh have been as successful preparing by himself?

Although it is possible to self-manage behavior in all six of the areas discussed, not all students do so. A reasonable goal is to manage as much of one’s behavior and thoughts as possible. In the example discussed, Josh and his friend believed they would be better prepared to make the debate team following their plan of action. If you were in the same situation, you may have approached the task differently.

Remember the example I provided earlier in the research about Robert’s study behavior for his history exam (pp. 4-5). Return to the description of his learning and studying behavior and identify how he managed each of the following factors: motivation, methods of learning, use of time, physical environment, social environment, and performance.

Throughout this research, you will be asked to set goals and develop a plan of action to attain them. During this process, you will learn how to manage different aspects of your academic learning that will affect your level of success.

Self-Worth Theory: Self-Protection of Perceived Ability

The self-worth motive is based on the premise that a central part of all classroom achievement is the need for students to maintain a positive image of their ability ( Covington, 1992). Students often believe that ability is the primary element for achieving success and lack of ability is the primary reason for failure. Their motive then becomes avoiding failure and protecting their self-worth from the perception that they have low ability. This self-protective motive is more prevalent during the adolescent years. Attributional explanations are important components for the selfprotection of ability. When students attribute a failure to putting forth little effort, the attributions serve to protect them from the explanation that they failed because of low ability. This explains why Kevin, after making a good grade, claimed he did not study, when, in fact, he did. Kevin believes that if people were aware that he had to study to receive a good grade, they might think that he lacked ability. Ability and self-worth are often seen by students as synonymous. It is ability, often in the absence of accomplishment, which defines self-worth for them. For students who believe success is unlikely, the main priority is to avoid failure that is linked or attributed to ability through the use of failure-avoiding strategies.

Classroom Practices and Failure-Avoiding Strategies

The negative motivation patterns of failure avoidance are often fostered by school and classroom practices. Perhaps the most prevalent practice is the competitive learning game ( Covington, 1992). The competitive game refers to situations that force students to compete with one another for grades and rewards. The following are classroom practices that force students to play the competitive game:

  • offering inadequate rewards that force students to fight or give up,
  • rewarding student aptitude and not effort,
  • basing grades on how each student compares to other students, and
  • forming groups based on similar ability of students.


In the learning condition, the teachers stressed short-term goals, individual challenge, and trying to improve over previous trials. A competition ladder was used in the performance condition, and the teachers stressed moving up the ladder and surpassing classmates. Students in the learning condition finished a higher number of hard trials per minute and students worked harder by means of better practice habits. In the performance condition, teachers reported evils such as cheating, arguments, and off-task behavior. The proof demonstrates the effects of the goal compass reading structure on students’ motivation. The learning structure obviously supported more positive knowledge effects for students and teachers.

What do we know concerning the growth of self-concepts of ability? Young children tend to misjudge their likelihood of success, but their assessment of capability changes with age and experience. The overestimation of success by younger children may be reasonable as they grow older and turn out to be more realistic. There is a number of evidence that self-perceptions of academic capability declines with age. These declines are assumed to be a consequence of together developmental changes and the classroom environment.

The main issue influencing the efficiency of your learning these skills is your ability to manage the variety of elements of your behavior. I group goal setting and manage of mood and attempt under motivational strategies, and time management and control of bodily and social environment under behavioral strategies. It is significant to note that behavioral and motivational self-control are unified.


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