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Factors in Graduate School Performance

Reilly, Richard R.
Publication Year:
Report Number:
ETS Research Bulletin
Document Type:
Page Count:
Subject/Key Words:
Graduate Record Examinations Board, Academic Achievement, Factor Analysis, Graduate Students, Higher Education, Performance Factors, Student Evaluation


Critical incidents were used to collect faculty ratings of graduate student performance in the departments of chemistry, English, and psychology. Separate factor analyses in each of three fields produced eight factors that were fairly consistent with respect to item loading across fields. Factors were labeled independence and initiative, conscientiousness, critical facility, enthusiasm, research and experimentation, communication, teaching skills, and persistence. In addition to ratings of students, faculty were asked to rate each incident with respect to its importance or relevance for success importance ratings were most similar for psychology, and chemistry and least similar for chemistry and English. The implications for future studies of graduate student performance are discussed. (31pp.)

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