Factors Influencing Postgraduate Students’ Performance: A high order top down structural equation modelling approach
Year: 2019 Vol: 19 Number: 2
Given the influx of new courses and programmes, an increase in the number of local and international students, as well as an upsurge in the number of universities in Malaysia, higher education has become a significant sector. Therefore, this study seeks to identify the factors affecting postgraduate research students’ performance. For this purpose, we identified and statistically analysed 41 indicators and 112 valid responses using exploratory factor analysis. We found the existence of higher-order factors, which were statistically evaluated and validated using variance-based structural equation modelling. The study found positive and significant relationships between research students’ performance and institutional factor, student’ personal factor, and supervisor-related factor. Additionally, our results indicated that students’ personal factor had a crucial influence on research students’ performance, followed by institutional factor, and supervisor-related factor. Thus, the study provides empirical evidence in support of student development theory and social learning theory. In the larger picture, the study offers a comprehensive model for future research.