Ineffective learning strategies: a significant barrier to post-secondary perseverance

Article de revue


État de publication: Publiée (2016 )

Nom de la revue: Journal of Further and Higher Education

Intervalle de pages: 1-18

Résumé: Study programme withdrawal and student perseverance in post-secondary education are major challenges for post-secondary institutions, especially in view of the increasing difficulty of retaining the student clientele during the first year of university studies. To analyse the challenges students face in terms of learning strategies, we asked students to identify the cognitive and self-regulatory strategies that they would like to enhance in order to succeed in their education. We conduct a descriptive analysis of 824 respondents from 7 university accounting programmes to highlight the main learning strategies that failed to work for our sample, mainly for time management, listening, and reading, and attention, concentration, and memorisation management. The students report that they are unable to effectively manage their time (balance family, work, and studies) or estimate the time they need to devote to their studies. They mention being unaware of strategies for easily retaining the information they read in books or texts and for listening to teacher presentations, doing exercises to apply the procedures that they are required to learn, or problem solving. They also report difficulties with concentration and recall. Learning difficulties, lack of project writing skills, and thinking about dropping out are found to be positively related to study withdrawal. Gaps in information search strategies and feeling dissatisfied with results despite the effort expended negatively affect student academic performance and thus increase the likelihood of student withdrawal.