This study examined variables that are within and beyond the control of students in explaining variations in performance in an introductory finance course. Regression models were utilized to consider whether the variables within the student's control have a greater impact on course performance relative to the variables beyond the student's control. Among the particular variables within the student's control were the student's inclination to procrastinate as evidenced by the relative delay the students exhibited in commencing online homework assignments. Also, separate measures were constructed to examine the effect of the accuracy of the homework submitted and the student's actual completion of those assignments. Class attendance was also considered. The variables largely beyond the control of the student examined in this study were a measure of how far along in the undergraduate program the student had progressed when he/she enrolled in the introductory finance course, a measure of the credit load of the student in the semester when the student took the course, the student's gender, the student's overall academic ability and the relative strength of the student in comprehending quantitative versus verbal concepts. For the three measures of student performance studied, average homework grade, the mid-term exam grade and the final exam grade, all of the relevant variables within the student's control demonstrated some impact on the various measures of performance. There was persuasive evidence that the variables within the student's control were more influential in explaining differences in student performance than the variables beyond the student's control.
Englander, F., Wang, Z., & Betz, K. (2015). Predictors of Performance in Introductory Finance: Variables within and beyond the Student’s Control. Higher Education Studies, 5(4). https://doi.org/10.5539/hes.v5n4p119