chapter  8
14 Pages


Many researchers have found no relationship between having completed a high school psychology course and final grades in a college introductory psychology class (e.g., Hedges & Thomas, 1980), but Carstens and Beck (1986) found that students with strong backgrounds in high school natural science (i.e., biology, chemistry, and physics) obtained higher course grades in their first college-level psychology class. Carstens and Beck’s subjects were not all first-term freshmen; some may have taken or may have been enrolled in college natural science courses (C.B.Carstens, personal communication, March 25, 1988). Thus, their results may have been confounded by two factors: (a) the number of college credits completed by each subject (e.g., see Griggs & Ransdell, 1987) and (b) prior completion of or concurrent enrollment in college-level natural science courses.