N. Wesseling

Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (NETHERLANDS)
Research on the success of students in higher education in the Netherlands is highly influenced by Tinto’s integration theory. This paper is part of a broader PhD research, in which I propose adjusting this theory to achieve a better fit with the present generation of students in the developed world. The paper focuses on a limited amount of factors from Tinto’s theory and measures these variables at an ordinal level for a better fit with the evaluation forms used in Dutch Institutes of Higher education. In line with the above-mentioned pedagogical theory and using insights from recent studies on students’ social media use, I also test the influence of the use of social media (Facebook) on student success.

The amount of effort a student makes, the subjected level of the courses and the expected progress are measured as well as use of Facebook by students. All are statistically analyzed and compared with the progress of the students; by grade points and the amount of time they need to pass all exams.

This paper provides insight into the potential use of a simplified version of the integration theory and the role of social media in education – especially by students outside of the classroom.