Degree Granting Department
Gert-Jan de Vreede, Ph.D.
Robert W. Hammond, D.B.A.
Sajeev Varki, Ph.D.
Doug Hughes, Ph.D.
Broaden and Build Theory, Efficacy, Hope, Optimism, Resilience, Social Cognitive Theory
This research study expands upon the body of research seeking to define the effect of Academic Psychological Capital (Academic PsyCap) and student Participation in Experiential Learning on one success measure of students, Academic Performance, as measured by grade point average (GPA). It also seeks to investigate the moderating effect of Experiential Learning on the relationship between Academic PsyCap and Academic Performance. The study argues that Social Cognitive Theory and Broaden and Build Theory supported a reciprocal relationship between Academic PsyCap and Participation in Experiential Learning Activities and the positive relationship between both constructs and Academic Performance.
The study was conducted at a regional university located in the south where juniors and seniors enrolled in the College of Business were surveyed. The survey contained questions regarding their Academic PsyCap, their participation in Experiential Learning Activities, and their GPA. The study found a statistically significant positive correlation between Academic PsyCap and GPA as well as a statistically significant positive correlation between Academic PsyCap and participation in Experiential Learning. An interesting note was there was not a statistically significant difference between participating in one, two, or three or more activities, indicating that it is not the intensity of participation but rather that they participated in at least one activity. Lastly, the study did not find evidence of an interaction effect of Participation in Experiential Learning on the relationship between Academic PsyCap and Academic Performance.
This research is important for institutions of higher learning as they seek to differentiate themselves, increase their impact, and improve the success of their students during college and after graduation. It is also an important consideration during social isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in that institutions of higher learning need to ensure that they continue to provide avenues for students to participate in Experiential Learning in the era of social distancing.
Scholar Commons Citation
Kutz, Diane, "Exploring the Association of Academic Psychological Capital and Experiential Learning with Academic Performance" (2020). USF Tampa Graduate Theses and Dissertations.