Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


The primary purpose of this investigation was to determine the relationship between college entrance test scores and evaluations made by college freshmen of their college preparatory backgrounds in English composition, in reading, and in study skills. Following the establishment of a valid and reliable relationship between the two measures, a secondary objective was to learn where the students indicated that their preparatory backgrounds could have been strengthened. To conduct the investigation, a writer-designed Rating Scale Evaluation was used by the students in appraising their backgrounds. Evaluations made by 263 freshmen enrolled in Freshmen English Composition at Fort Hays Kansas State College were compared with their entrance test scores made on the American College Tests and the Minnesota Reading Test. Substantially significant validity coefficients were established for the group as a whole with a range of .37 to .60; but for the smaller ability groups, the numbers were insufficient for the establishment of statistically significant relationships. According to the size of the sample, reliability of .95 was assumed on the basis of related research, which showed both validity and reliability increasing with the number of raters. The conclusions made in regard to college preparatory background was summarized as follows: 1. The most significant conclusion was that this group of college freshmen was capable of estimating and appraising their own competencies with reference to their preparatory backgrounds. 2. Preparatory background in the basic skills was considered adequate to good by the great majority of students. 3. In general, college preparatory background was considered deficient in the use of effective methods of study, in the use of library materials, and in the more refined reading skills. 4. Preparatory background in the basic composition skills was considered a serious deficiency only by students in the remedial classes. The following recommendations and suggestions were made: 1. that student evaluations be used more frequently in appraising educational backgrounds, including objectives and procedures. 2. That this study be extended to include course marks made by these college freshmen in English Composition. 3. That a similar study be made in which there would be a better sampling of Composition I students to support or negate some of the findings of this study. 4. That a study similar to this one be made in the fall and repeated in the spring. Such a study could yield valuable information concerning the intellectual growth of college freshmen, especially in changes of perception and perspective.


Calvin E. Harbin

Date of Award

Summer 1964

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 1964 Lila Maurine Jones


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