Examining the differences of perceived family support, self-esteem, self-efficacy, academic performance, and academic help-seeking on college adjustment among Hispanic first-year college students
Barrera Gonzalez, Jeremy
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The present study aimed to evaluate academic performance, academic help-seeking, college adjustment, perceived family support, self-efficacy, and self-esteem among Hispanic and non-Hispanic first-year students attending a university and to determine the differences between the two populations. A focus was placed on Hispanic students in an attempt to address the low retention rates documented among Hispanics attending college (Lee et al., 2011). First-year students attending a Hispanic-serving university in South Texas were voluntarily recruited to participate in this quantitative study using a non-experimental, correlational design. Correlational designs evaluate the relationships between two or more variables and allow researchers to make predictions based on their past findings (Heppner et al., 2008). The rising number of students studying at U.S. colleges and universities (Hussar & Bailey, 2013; U.S. Department of Education [USDE] & National Center for Education Statistics [NCES], 2020) and their lack of preparation for adjusting to college (Tirpak & Scholosser, 2015) create a significant need for exploration into this issue. Participants in this study included 117 first-year Hispanic (n = 55) and non-Hispanic (n = 62) college students. The data were collected during the fall 2020 semester at a Hispanic serving institute in South Texas and utilized the Help-Seeking Scale-Avoidance to Help-Seeking Subscale (HSS-AHSS; Karabenick, 2003), grade point average (GPA) , Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES; Rosenberg, 1965), General Self-Efficacy Scale (GSES; Schwarzer & Jerusalem, 1995), Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support-Perceived Family Support Subscale (MSPSS-PFSS; Zimet et al., 1988; Zimet et al., 1990), and the Student Adaptation to College Questionnaire (SACQ; Baker & Siryk, 1989). Descriptive statistics and a multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) were used to investigate the variables included in this study. To determine the extent to which GPA, self-esteem, perceived family support, self-efficacy, and academic help-seeking predicted college adjustment, a hierarchical multiple regression analysis was utilized. Lastly, a Fisher’s z-transformation was conducted to evaluate significant differences in the two regression models. The results showed no significant differences between first-year Hispanic and non-Hispanic college students in their levels of college adjustment, GPA, self-esteem, self-efficacy, perceived family support, or academic help-seeking. Further investigation led to the discovery of a significant relationship between the predictor variables and the outcome variable. Academic performance, self-esteem, self-efficacy, and family support significantly explained 18% of the variance in college adjustment. Additionally, a comparison of the fit of the model from Hispanic and non-Hispanic students revealed no statistically significant differences between these groups. The study findings have practical implications for college counselors, college administrators, and college educators. The findings may provide additional insight for those wishing to provide support to first-year Hispanic college students and their unique needs. Perhaps through an improved understanding of these needs, syllabi can be better tailored for a more beneficial college experience. Ultimately, the results of this study could promote the development of supportive services and programs to improve student academic success and retention.
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