Graduation Year

2004

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ph.D.

Degree Granting Department

Measurement and Evaluation

Major Professor

Jeffrey Kromrey, Ph.D.

Keywords

Enrollment motives, Teaching evaluation, University image, Validity, Construct validity

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the construct validation of an instrument based on students university choice and their perceptions of professor effectiveness and academic reputation at the University of Los Andes (ULA). Moreover, a comparative analysis was carried out to determine how the selected factors that influence the students decisions and perceptions differ according to student demographic factors such as: gender and university campus. This instrument was developed with items based on the three domains formulated: university choice process, professor effectiveness, and university academic reputation. To determine the instruments appropriateness to measure the students decisions in university choice process and their perceptions about professor effectiveness and university academic reputation at the ULA, this research examined the reliability of scores by domains and factors across domains.

The participants were undergraduate students who were registered in the second semester of 2002 and enrolled in the different courses by college within the ULAs main campus, which consists of ten colleges throughout the city of Merida, and within the other two university branch campuses in Tachira and Trujillo. For purposes of this research, a stratified probability sample was used to select the participants. The data show that the instrument designed has adequate internal consistency reliability estimates (all the domains exceeded .70). The confirmatory factor analysis shows that the overall fit indices revealed values at or close to the acceptable range .90, even when the model has statistically significant chi-square and demonstrates significant problems with some of the standardized residuals, which indicates that the fit of the model could possibly be significantly improved.

The modified model revealed a relatively small improvement in the overall goodness of fit. These results provide supportive evidence of construct validity. Finally, the multivariate analyses of variance using gender and university campus as the predictor variables revealed a nonsignificant gender effect and a significant university campus effect, respectively. The Tukey multiple comparison test used to determine university campus differences across the domains showed approximately similar results, although they are separate and distinguishable. ULA-Merida established the highest mean scores when they are compared on the factors that influence their decisions in university choice process and their perceptions about professor effectiveness and university academic reputation, and the campus 1 (NURR-Trujillo) show the smaller mean scores.

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