Journal article
The Predictive Validity of Entrance Scores and Short Term Performance for Long-Term Success in Engineering Education

Research Areas
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Publication Details
Author list: Faisal A. Abdelfattah, Omar S. Obeidat, Yousef A. Salahat, Maha B. BinBakr, Adam A. Al Sultan
Publication year: 2021
ISSN: 2050-7003
Web of Science ID: 000672817400001
PubMed ID:
Scopus ID: 85110052587


This study examined predictors of cumulative grade point average (GPA) from entrance scores and successive performance during students' academic work in university engineering programs.


Scores from high school coursework, the General Ability Test and the Achievement Test were examined to determine if these factors and annual successive GPAs were predictors of long-term GPA. The sample consisted of 2,031 students registered in university engineering programs during the 2013–2019 period.


Correlations were significant between entrance scores and the preparatory year GPA but not with cumulative GPA. Also, correlations were significant between year-1 GPA to year-3 GPA and the graduation GPA. Adjacent year GPA is the better predictor of later GPA. More importantly, GPA at the time of graduation is well predicted by GPAs throughout years of study within engineering programs after controlling for entrance scores. Girls outperform boys in their entrance scores and GPAs. Hence, girls are likely to obtain higher cumulative GPAs.

Research limitations/implications

The implications of the study findings could help university faculty and administrators to understand the role of current entrance scores in predicting academic achievement of engineering students. In addition, the results could serve as a foundation to review weights of entrance scores for future developments and revisions. The findings of the study are limited to admission data for engineering students during the 2013–2019 period. Other disciplines may show a different pattern of relationships among the studied variables.

Practical implications

The study findings have useful practical implications for admitting and monitoring student progress at engineering education programs. Results may help program curriculum development specialists and committees in designing admission criteria.

Social implications

Administrators and faculty members are advised to consider entrance scores when providing counseling and monitoring throughout students' program-year progress. More attention should be devoted to university performance when interest is focused on later or graduation CGPA, with less emphasis on entrance scores.


The existed previous studies explored factors that influence the student performance in engineering programs. This study documents the role of admission criteria and successive GPAs in predicting the student graduation CGPA in engineering programs. Relationships between factors are crucial for engineering program revisions and policymaking.

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Last updated on 2021-07-10 at 10:08