Academic journal article e-Journal of Business Education and Scholarship Teaching

Factors Affecting Academic Performance of Business Students at the University of Fiji: A Survey

Academic journal article e-Journal of Business Education and Scholarship Teaching

Factors Affecting Academic Performance of Business Students at the University of Fiji: A Survey

Article excerpt


Education plays an important role in acquiring the skills necessary for success in life. Learning and attaining knowledge is crucial for the betterment of one's status in society. Academic education focuses primarily on learning progression. The learning process enhances students' academic performance.

Commonly, grades are considered as a measure for students' knowledge or intelligence level (Wood & Locke, 1987). This measure of students' intelligence is appropriate for professions like law, medicine or finance. Moreover, students' placing effort can also be a sign of academic performance. For instance, some students demonstrate their competency by holding officer positions in the student association body. Indeed, during interviews, employers look favourably on consistent leadership activities on graduates with the underlining assumption that these graduates will bring the same enthusiasm and commitment to their organization.

Furthermore, extracurricular accomplishments add flavour to a student's academic performance. The ability to master a diverse set of skills illustrates intelligence, curiosity and persistence which employers also consider in the recruitment process (Baker, 2008). For example, students having skills in athletics or music apart from their academic performance. It is well observed that some students with average grades are awarded scholarships on the basis of displaying a pattern of achievement by consistently learning new skills.

However, academic performance and the learning process are dependent on many variables surrounding the students. This could range from communication skills, intelligent quotient level, learning resources and socio-economic status of the students. Communication skills and IQ levels are developed over a period of time which plays a significant role in the students' academic performance. One of the effective learning resources that significantly boost students' academic performance is the level of interaction with the facilitators and this is where communication plays a notable role (Palos & Petrovici, 2014). On the other hand, poor communication skills affect students' performance in completing the given task (Cho et al., 2007). To add further, the socioeconomic status of students has a positive relationship with their academic performance.

Thus, the objective of this study is to examine the relationship of the University of Fiji Business and Economics students' academic performance with their student income, communication skills, and IQ score. The study will also provide some recommendations on how student academic performance can be further enhanced based on the factors analyzed. Student income refers to income derived during their tenure of study. For example, pocket expense, book allowance and scholarship money to name a few.

Literature Review

A university is an environment where a systematically coordinated, scientifically conformed education service is provided (Akessa & Dhufera, 2015). Academic performance at tertiary level is influenced by many factors. Existing literature focuses on variables such as communication skills, positive and negative effects of intelligence, study habits, teaching skill of academics, the personal interest of students, learning resources and socio-economic status of a family or the student.

Communication skills of students

Communication has always been one of the relevant variables influencing the teaching-learning process (Palos & Petrovici, 2014). Therefore, the extent to which students are developed in communicating with each other and the teachers play a vital role as good communication skill helps students' to better understand the concepts and write answers as expected. These skills are not acquired in a short span of time but are enhanced from their schools days (McCroskey, Booth-Butterfield and Payne, 1989). It is noted that students who are better able to communicate, engage themselves more in the class, that is, they raise queries when in doubt of a particular concept or idea perform better academically. …

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