Predicting school achievement in Zimbabwean multiracial schools using Biggs' Learning Process Questionnaire

Mpofu, Elias; Oakland, Thomas
September 2001
South African Journal of Psychology;Sep2001, Vol. 31 Issue 3, p20
Academic Journal
Biggs' (1987) Learning Process Questionnaire (LPQ) is a widely acknowledged measure of student approaches to learning. However, its utility in predicting actual school achievement and in multi-cultural contexts is unknown. This study investigated the validity of Biggs' LPQ and its underlying theory in predicting academic achievement in Zimbabwean multiracial schools. Three hundred and seventy-six Zimbabwean black (157) and white (219) students (mean age = 12.3 years; SD = .7) attending six racially integrated schools took part in the study. Students who reportedly used a surface approach to learning achieved lower levels of academic achievement compared to those who reportedly used deep and achieving approaches. Compared to white students, black students who reported higher use of a deep approach had lower academic grades. Students who reported a higher use of a surface strategy and taught by female teachers displayed significantly lower academic achievement than those who reported use of deep approaches. Support was found for the LPQ and its underlying theory. They appear to have some potential as research tool for use in Zimbabwean multiracial schools.


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