Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership

First Advisor's Name

Thomas G. Reio, Jr.

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Tonette S. Rocco

Third Advisor's Name

Paulette Johnson

Fourth Advisor's Name

Benjamin Baez

Keywords

validity, GRE General Test Scores, undergraduate GPA, prediction, success in graduate school, race, ethnicity, diverse, public university, Southeast Florida

Date of Defense

11-8-2012

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to determine the degree of relationships among GRE scores, undergraduate GPA (UGPA), and success in graduate school, as measured by first year graduate GPA (FGPA), cumulative graduate GPA, and degree attainment status. A second aim of the study was to determine whether the relationships between the composite predictor (GRE scores and UGPA) and the three success measures differed by race/ethnicity and sex.

A total of 7,367 graduate student records (masters, 5,990; doctoral: 1,377) from 2000 to 2010 were used to evaluate the relationships among GRE scores, UGPA and the three success measures. Pearson’s correlation, multiple linear and logistic regression, and hierarchical multiple linear and logistic regression analyses were performed to answer the research questions.

The results of the correlational analyses differed by degree level. For master’s students, the ETS proposed prediction that GRE scores are valid predictors of first year graduate GPA was supported by the findings from the present study; however, for doctoral students, the proposed prediction was only partially supported.

Regression and correlational analyses indicated that UGPA was the variable that consistently predicted all three success measures for both degree levels. The hierarchical multiple linear and logistic regression analyses indicated that at master’s degree level, White students with higher GRE Quantitative Reasoning Test scores were more likely to attain a degree than Asian Americans, while International students with higher UGPA were more likely to attain a degree than White students. The relationships between the three predictors and the three success measures were not significantly different between men and women for either degree level.

Findings have implications both for practice and research. They will provide graduate school administrators with institution-specific validity data for UGPA and the GRE scores, which can be referenced in making admission decisions, while they will provide empirical and professionally defensible evidence to support the current practice of using UGPA and GRE scores for admission considerations. In addition, new evidence relating to differential predictions will be useful as a resource reference for future GRE validation researchers.

Identifier

FI12121002

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