Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Roger R. Ries


The predictive ability of mathematics and reading placement tests used as a prerequisite for entry into the introductory level of accounting principles was investigated in a case study conducted at Thomas Nelson Community College in Hampton, Virginia for students enrolled during the 19-month period beginning with June 1988 and ending with December 1989. The entire population of 1353 students was used in the study which tested for the independence of two variables, assessed or non-assessed students and their success (or non-success) in the course. In addition, the scores on the placement tests were compared with the final grade of the students to establish any possible correlation between the scores and grades. Other variables such as gender, age, day or evening student status, full- or part-time status of the student or faculty, and/or curricula were also tested for their predictive qualities. The study used Chi-square statistics and stepwise multiple regression analysis to evaluate the results.;The study confirmed that although there appears to be a positive correlation between some of the reading and mathematics placement tests used in the study, students who have been subjected to placement testing did not score better than the students who had not been assessed. In the area of mathematics, arithmetic skills appear to be a more significant predictor of final grade outcome than does the placement test on elementary algebra. Both reading placement tests investigated showed significant, though limited, predictive value.;Further study should include re-evaluation of the placement tests being used for their validity as a predictor of success. The level of cut-off scores which are deemed to be acceptable should also be examined. Also, further study might explore the impact that factors other than adequate entering skills, such as teaching methodology, textbook materials, accounting laboratories, and use of computers have on the success rate of accounting students.



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