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ORIGINAL ARTICLE  
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 28-31
Effectiveness of study skills on academic performance of dental students


1 Department of Oral Pathology, Faculty of Dentistry, Melaka Manipal Medical College, Manipal, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Community Dentistry, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal, Karnataka, India

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Date of Web Publication17-Oct-2014
 

   Abstract 

Introduction: Study skills are important for better academic performance. Our study provides the view of the various skills of studying adopted by the dental students and its association with their performance in the Oral Biology subject in university examination.
Material and Methods: A total of 137 students from Faculty of Dentistry, MMMC, Manipal, India participated in the study. A questionnaire consisting of 23 items assessing the study skills and distractions. The responses from the students were recorded on a 5-point Likert scale and the data were analyzed using the chi-square test.
Results: The response rate was 100%. A significant association (P < 0.05) between the students' performance in the subject of Oral Biology in university examination (average of >75% versus <75% marks) and study skills was seen in 6 of 23 questionnaires. The students with high exam scores often showed higher percentage of use of various study skills compared to the students with lower exam scores.
Conclusion: The study techniques used by students are beneficial but not all are effective. Hence the students should be informed of the more effective method of studying.

Keywords: Chi-square test, dental students, study skills

How to cite this article:
Shetty SS, Srinivasan SR. Effectiveness of study skills on academic performance of dental students . J Educ Ethics Dent 2014;4:28-31

How to cite this URL:
Shetty SS, Srinivasan SR. Effectiveness of study skills on academic performance of dental students . J Educ Ethics Dent [serial online] 2014 [cited 2019 Sep 22];4:28-31. Available from: http://www.jeed.in/text.asp?2014/4/1/28/143175



   Introduction Top


Study skills are critical for academic success. [1] Academic competence is associated with the knowledge and application of effective study skills. [2] At the same time little attention is given to the way the students study in the 21 st century, in a world that has more interactive tools and pedagogical approach. [1] There are many different ways to study but not all methods may enhance learning. [3] Sizeable literatures are available on various learning strategies that would likely result in higher achievement. [4] Study skills include the competencies associated with acquiring, recording, organizing, synthesizing, remembering, and using information. [2] These competencies contribute to success in both nonacademic (e.g., employment) and academic settings. [2],[5] In the middle of 1950s, the study skill courses were introduced in the universities for the first time. These courses focused on skills of reading, writing and note-taking skills. [6] In 1980s the researchers believed that these skills could be taught in pre-school level. [7] However the researchers have produced no consistent evidence that any specific techniques are more effective than the passive techniques of learning such as simple reading, rereading. [8] Study skills can be divided into four main categories: Repetition-based (e.g., flashcards and mnemonics), cognitive-based (e.g., studying with a friend, group work), procedural (e.g., time management, organization, scheduling study routines), and metacognitive (e.g., taking quizzes to test self-knowledge). [3] Students are often unaware that some of their habits, such as having music on while studying, may affect their learning. [3] Although there are literatures on how students should study, not much is known regarding how students actually study. [3] Studies comparing these different study skills and the effect of the distractions during study are equivocal and very limited. Hence our study provides the view of the various skills of studying adopted by the dental students and its association with their performance in oral biology subject in the annual university examination.


   Material and Methods Top


A total of 137 students from year 1 and 2, Faculty of Dentistry, MMMC, Manipal University, Manipal, India participated in the study. A questionnaire by Gurung R.A.R [3] was modified and used. The questionnaire was administered after explaining the aim of the study to the students and gaining their consent.

The questionnaire consisted of 23 items assessing the study skills and distractions. Out of these, 17 were positively phrased and 6 negatively phrased. The students were asked about their method of studying and the extent to which they used them on a 5-point Likert scale ranging from 1 (never) to 5 (always/ all the time). Reverse scoring was done for the distractions which were negatively phrased. The total number of hours the student study everyday was also questioned. The students were group as average above 75% and average below 75% based on their performance in Oral Biology subject in first year university examination. The collected data were analyzed using chi-square test.


   Results Top


The response rate was 100%. A significant association (P < 0.05) between the students' performance in the subject of Oral Biology in university examination (average of >75% versus <75% marks) and study skills was seen in 6 of 23 questionnaires. For the question "Do you read both text books and notes?" 48.4% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "often", whereas 42.5% of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "sometimes". The response for the question "Do you repeatedly read each chapter and memorize?", was that about 39.1% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "often", whereas 39.7% of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "sometimes". For the question "Do you highlight the important paragraphs with color pens?" 54.7% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "always", whereas 32.9 % of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "always". When the question "Do you use mnemonics?" was asked, 37.5% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "sometimes", whereas 41.1% of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "sometimes". For the question "Do you draw self-explanatory diagrams/recall suitable examples for remembrance?" 39.7% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "sometimes", whereas 32.9 % of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "often". The response for the question "Do you Test self-knowledge?" was that about 33.3% of the students with exam scores of average >75% marks answered "often", whereas 41.1% of the students with exam scores of average <75% answered "sometimes".

The distractors during the study did not show significant association with exam performance, but it was seen that about 47.4% of students responded as "always" watching television while studying, 34.3% of students "sometimes" listen to music while studying and 35.8% of students "sometimes" chat/instant message friends while studying.

The number of hours of study time by the students varied from 0-4 h; it also depended on whether there was any exam or test nearing, which increased their number of hours of study time.

Statistical analysis was performed using chi-square test. The criterion for statistical significance was P < 0.05. The results were then tabulated which are shown in the [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6].
Table 1: Questionnaire items on study skills and Distractors

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Table 2: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using chisquare test

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Table 3: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using chi-square test

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Table 4: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using chi-square test

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Table 5: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using chi-square test

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Table 6: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using
chi-square test


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   Discussion Top


Study skills are tools that assist students during learning process, to acquire knowledge which is important for successful academic performance. [1] Capable students may experience difficulty in class, not due to lack of ability but because they lack good study skills. [2],[9] Various studies in the literature have hypothesized that the use of wide range of study skills has positive effect on academic performance of the students. [10] In current study, the study skills such as reading or referring both textbooks and notes for the exam, also the use of mnemonics showed significant association with exam scores [Table 2] and [Table 5], in accordance with the study by Gurung R.A.R. [3] The other study techniques such as testing self-knowledge, highlighting the important paragraphs with color pens, drawing self-explanatory diagrams/recall suitable examples for remembrance, repeatedly read each chapter and memorize also showed significant association with exam scores [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 6], [Table 7] but in contrast with results of Gurung R.A.R, [3] suggesting that the method of study by the students is important and has positive impact on academic performance. [3]
Table 7: Percentage distribution of responses and association of study skill with academic performance using
chi-square test


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The study skills such as preparation and following of time tables/study schedule, did not show significant association with exam performance in our study in contrast with the results by Britton B.K & Teaser A, [11] Hattie J. [12]

The study also highlights various habits which students should not adopt while studying. Our study did not show significant association between the distractors while studying and exam scores, which is in accordance with the results by Gurung R.A.R. [3] However the students need to be instructed on avoiding these distractors while studying.


   Conclusion Top


The students with high exam scores are seen to adopt various study skills more frequently than the students with low exam scores. Few study techniques are more beneficial than others. Hence teachers should help students more effectively to prepare for exams by informing students about the techniques and modifying the method of studying, as method by which the students study actually seem to matter. The students must also be made aware of the distractors which affect their process of study and also the performance in the examination.


   Acknowledgement Top


I am grateful to all BDS Batch 3 and 4 students, Faculty of Dentistry, Melaka Manipal Medical College, Manipal, India for their participation in the study.

 
   References Top

1.
Wolfe AM. Student attitudes toward study skills. Marketing Management Association 2009 Proceedings. Chicago: Marketing Management Association; 2009. p. 262-8.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Gettinger M, Seibert JK. Contributions of Study Skills to Academic Competence. School Psychol Rev 2002;31:350-65.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Gurung RA. How do students really study (and does it matter)? Teach Psychol 2005;32:238-40.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Fleming VM. Improving students' exam performance by introducing study strategies and goal setting. Teach Psychol 2002;29:115-9.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Hoover JJ, Patton PR. Teaching students with learning problems to use study skills: A teacher's guide. Austin: Pro ed, 1995.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Hartley J. Improving study skills. Br Educ Res J 1986;12:111-23.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Zimmerman BJ. Self-regulation needs more than meta-cognition: A social cognitive perspective. Educ Psychol 1995;30:217-21.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Wade SE, Trathen W, Schraw G. An analysis of spontaneous study strategies. Read Res Q 1990;25:147-66.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Nicaise M, Gettinger M. Fostering reading comprehension in college students. Read Psychol 1995;16:283-337.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
Fazal S, Hussain S, Majoka MI, Masood S. The Role of study skills in academic achievement of students: A closer focus on gender. Pak J Psychol Res 2012;27:37-51.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Britton BK, Tesser A. Effects of time- management practices of college grades. J Educ Psychol 1991;83:405-10.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Purdie N, Hattie J. The relationship between study skills and learning outcomes: A meta-analysis. Aust J Educ 1999;43:72-86.  Back to cited text no. 12
    

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Correspondence Address:
Smitha S Shetty
Department of Oral Pathology, Faculty of Dentistry, Melaka Manipal Medical College, Manipal - 576 104, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0974-7761.143175

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    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6], [Table 7]



 

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    Abstract
   Introduction
   Material and Methods
   Results
   Discussion
   Conclusion
   Acknowledgement
    References
    Article Tables

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