Astronomy is probably the oldest science known to man. Human civilization have has greatly benefited from these events in the sky, stimulating the minds of the earliest cavemen and down to the great scientists like Johannes Kepler, Sir Isaac Newton, Sir Galileo Galilee and Albert Einstein (Lee, 2009).
Astronomy is more than mapping stars and planets; it is a scientific study of the contents of the entire universe. One of the recently established departments in the College of Engineering and Industrial Technology in Rizal Technological University is the Department of Earth and Space Sciences. It promotes appreciation and broadening of astronomy education in the Philippines. It aims to produce graduates possessing thorough knowledge of astronomy and empowered in facing the challenges of competitive global community. It also entails to further and advance the interest of astronomy, to fuse and integrate Filipino values and virtues in the practice of astronomy and to realize the establishment of astronomy education through engineering-based expertise.
Academic performance denotes how well a student is achieving tasks and studies. The usual factors associated with it are grades, attendance, attitude, motivation and behavior towards studying. Analyzing students’ academic performance has several purposes. The learning process needs performance indicators to rank the students and determine the causes of their failure. Identifying, evaluating, tracking and encouraging the progress of students will provide more career choices and job possibilities.
Academic performance can be evaluated in a number of ways. Other concerns that affect academic performance especially in third world countries are health and nutritional status. School development such as construction of school facilities, provision of textbooks and other learning materials, and teacher trainings are essential to improve equality education.
Academic performance is a way to determine the students’ achievement in school. The factors associated to may differ from one student to another. The measure of a students’ achievement depends on the factors associated with it. Faculty/teachers should identify these factors such as; course, study habits, learning styles, motivation, professor, and social aspects.
This study entails to the investigation on the factors affecting academic performance of the BS Astronomy students. The factors are delimited with course, study habits, learning styles, motivation, professor, and social aspects. The respondents are the students of Rizal Technological University in the College of Engineering and Industrial Technology taking BS Astronomy and who are officially enrolled in the second semester 2011- 2012.
The null hypothesis is rejected that there are no significant differences in the factors affecting academic performance of BS Astronomy students based on the result of this study. Hence, the formulated hypothesis that there is no significant difference in the factors affecting academic performance of BS Astronomy students is hereby rejected.
There is a marked negative relationship between the general weighted average and the factors affecting academic performance. For the relationship between % general weighted average and rated factors affecting academic performance, r = -0.129353. The relationship is negative; as the general weighted average increases, the rated factors affecting academic performance decreases.
The value of r = -0.129353 indicates a marked negative relationship between the general weighted average and the rated factor of the forty two students. The coefficient of determination is r2 = 0.016, this presents that the general weighted average improves the prediction of the rated factors by 1.6%. The general weighted average expresses 1.6% of the variation in the rated factors by the students.
Based on the findings and conclusions of this study, and within limitations the researcher draws the following recommendations:
There is no significant marked negative relationship between the general weighted average and the rated factors affecting academic performance of the BS Astronomy Technology students.
- The students are very optimistic about their academic performance; thus, the department should continue to assign subjects to most qualified professors.
- Since students from the higher years are the only group of students who understand and express the importance of their course, it is recommended that lower years should have a strong background and anticipation about the importance of their course.
- It is recommended that future researchers may utilize other measures/dynamics to further illustrate the factors that affect academic performance of students.
- Students were not able to assess their social media and networking period as well as their uncertainty of playing games as part of their habit. With this, the students should be aware of their social media and networking period and their habit of playing games to be attentive of time they allotted in their social life.
- The department should continue giving the students qualified professors who give grades objectively and fairly.
- Students should convey and appreciate having high grades and not be satisfied with only a passing grade.
- The department should continue reinforcing students’ reasoning and thinking skills especially if they are related to astronomy.
- The department should continue supporting the students in their passion to study astronomy by conducting activities and engaging them in astronomical events.