EUROPEAN CREDIT, WORKLOAD AND ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF UNIVERSITY STUDENTS
University of Balearic Islands (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:The purpose of this study consists of describing the workload in European credits recorded in a sample of university students and comparing it with the work estimate made by teaching staff. We also aim to analyze the relationship between workload and academic performance achieved through the grade obtained in the subject. Thus, the data from the Teaching Innovation Project (Proyecto de Innovación Docente) carried out at the University of the Balearic Islands (UIB) during academic year 2007-2008 was used. The general aim of the Project was to carry out experiences in educational innovation in order to improve quality in the field of teaching in the face of the challenge presented by the EHEA (European Higher Education Area). The project took into account, among other actions, the implantation of the European credit in subjects or in whole courses of the official degrees taught at the UIB. In these experiences, 1 European credit considered equivalent to 25 hours overall student work.
In this study, the sample was made up of a total of 174 students enrolled in the first year of the five participating degrees: 102 in Psychology, 18 in Chemistry, 17 in Mathematics, 27 in Technical Agricultural Engineering and 10 in History of Art.
The results obtained allow us to conclude that, on the whole, there is an overestimate of students’ work hours predicted by teaching staff. This overestimate occurs especially in the case of non class activities or private study. With respect to the relationship between students’ volume of work and grade, it was seen that a third of the subjects analyzed show a relevant relationship at a practical level between both variables. For this set of subjects, it was seen, for instance, that the effective effort made by students during the course influences the grade in the subject. In this sense, it can be said that students obtain a better performance the greater the number of hours they study.
The results obtained in the study provide information which is of interest to Spanish universities in designing and implanting the official degrees, Master’s degrees and Doctorate degrees adapted to the EHEA, in accordance with Royal Decree 1393/2007, of 29 October, which establishes the organization of official university teaching.
Keywords: European credit, workload, academic performance.