Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2013

Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In

Educational Policy and Leadership Studies

First Advisor

Paulsen, Michael

Second Advisor

Pascarella, Ernest T.

First Committee Member

Ogren, Christine A.

Second Committee Member

Bills, David B.

Third Committee Member

Coohey, Carol


This study examined the effects of good teaching practices on post-baccalaureate degree aspirations using logistic regression techniques on a multi-institutional, longitudinal sample of students at four-year colleges and universities. Using College Choice and College Outcomes models as a theoretical foundation, I examined whether eight good teaching practices (non-classroom interactions with faculty, prompt feedback, frequency of interactions with faculty, teaching clarity and organization, challenging classes and high faculty expectations, frequency of higher-order exams and assignments, academic challenge and effort, and integrated ideas, information, and experiences) influenced post-baccalaureate degree aspirations at the end of four academic years, while controlling for students' background characteristics and institutional characteristics that are theoretically associated with aspirations. Using pre-test and post-test data from the Wabash National Study of Liberal Arts Education (WNS), the findings suggest that good teaching practices are positively related to undergraduate students' aspirations for graduate education. This study contributes to college outcome models by emphasizing the importance of faculty to the undergraduate experience. Finally, this study has implications for higher education policy, including practical applications for those involved with undergraduate and graduate education, including administrators, faculty, staff, and students.


degree aspirations, graduate school, teaching


viii, 130 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 119-130).


Copyright 2013 Jana M Hanson