Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

First Advisor

Steven A. Freeman


This study investigated the role of demographic characteristics and employment variables in predicting adult learners' academic success as defined by their cumulative grade point average (CGPA). The impact of work experience on students' academic success was further examined. The sample consisted of 614 part-time students from four polytechnic institutions in Malaysia.

Demographic characteristics studied included respondent's age, gender, marital status, number of children, first-generation status, and financial resources. Employment variables assessed were number of years working, job relatedness to the program, job satisfaction, and monthly salary. The study identified six factors to measure the students' perceived influence of work experiences--positive belief, negative belief, intrinsic motivation, learning orientation, deep learning approach, and surface learning approach.

Results indicated that being an older student, being female, paying for their own education, and having high job satisfaction were statistically significant predictors of part-time students' academic success. Academic success was affected moderately by the negative belief and weakly by intrinsic motivation. Positive belief was significantly influenced by deep learning approach, intrinsic motivation, and learning orientation. Negative belief was influenced by surface learning approach.

Understanding the effects of demographic characteristics, employment variables, and the perceived influence of work experience on students' academic success might help administrators and educators to effectively design teaching and learning strategies, assessment methods, and motivational and intervention programs to enhance part-time students' academic success.


Copyright Owner

Norhayati Ibrahim



Date Available


File Format


File Size

146 pages