UNIVERSITY MATRICULATION EXAMINATION AS A PREDICTOR OF STUDENTSâ€™ FINAL GRADES
This study was aimed at determining the extent to which University Matriculation Examinations (UME) – now Unified Tertiary Institutions Matriculation Examinations (UTME) score predicted studentsâ€™ final grades in four departments (Nursing Sciences, Medical Radiography and Radiological Sciences, Medical Laboratory Sciences and Medical Rehabilitation Sciences) of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Technology, University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus. A non experimental, retrospective correlational design was used for the study. Seven research questions and seven hypotheses guided the study. Records of 306 UME students of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Technology who were registered in the 2005/2006 and 2006/2007 academic sessions, and whose result were ready and approved by the University Senate as at December 2012 were selected and studied. The data was collected with a researcher-designed proforma and analyzed with the aid of Computer Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 17. Pearsonâ€™s Product Moment Correlation Coefficient (r) and Partial Correlations Coefficient (r2) were the statistics used. P < 0 .05 was considered statistically significant. Major findings of the study were that UME score was a poor predictor of studentsâ€™ final grades 3% in the Faculty of Health Sciences and Technology. There was significant relationship between the UME scores and the FCGPA among students of the Medical Radiography and Radiological Sciences Department (p < 0.05); there was significant differences in UME scores and the FCGPA in favour of the male students: There was a significant relationship (p < 0.05) between the UME scores and the FCGPA of the male students; UME scores accounted for about 8% (r2 = .0751) variance in the FCGPA of the male students while it accounted for less than 1% (r2 < .0001) for the female students. There was also significant departmental difference in UME scores and the FCGPA among the students of Medical Radiography and Radiological Sciences Department. It was recommended among others, that less emphasis be placed on the Unified Tertiary Institutions Matriculation Examination (UTME) scores for admission of students into universities; also that more universities be established to reduce the pressure of seeking admission at all costs from the few existing ones. The main limitation of the study is that the records of students of only two academic sessions in the FHST were studied. Suggestions for further research were also highlighted.
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