Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Raymond Mendel, Sam McFarland, John Faine

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Arts


Is there a relationship between the grades students expect to receive in a course and the ratings they assign their course instructor? If a relationship does exist, do the students' grade expectations cause the ratings subsequently given the instructor? Data were collected at the beginning and end of a semester, and a cross -lagged panel correlational analysis was applied to two pairs of variables. The first pair of variables, a single -item assessment of instructor effectiveness and a single-item record of each student's expected grade, indicated a statistically significant relationship between expected grades and the measure of instructor performance. This relationship was stronger at the end of the semester than it was at the beginning, and cross - lagged correlations indicated that students' expected grades are causal contributors to the single-item overall instructor ratings. The second variable pair included the same measure of expected grade and a factor score measure of instructor performance. The cross -lagged data from this variable pair also showed a stronger grade -rating relationship at the end of the semester than at the beginning. However, the hypothesis that expected grades cause factor -score instructor ratings was not confirmed.


Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Psychology Commons