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Title:Test Anxiety and the Brazilian College Entrance Examination
Author(s):Coes, Maria Do Carmo Rabelo
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Educational Psychology
Abstract:The nature of test anxiety and its relationship to performance is analyzed in the context of the Brazilian College Entrance Examination (Vestibular). Admission to Brazilian universities is based solely on performance on the Vestibular examination. The major questions investigated relate to two groups of hypotheses: (1) the relationship between test anxiety or its components on Vestibular performance and (2) the potential determinants of the level of test anxiety, among them past failure experience on the Vestibular, socioeconomic background, and sex.
These questions are analyzed using a sample of 353 candidates for the 1984 Vestibular, who were attending a preparatory course in Sao Jose dos Campos, in the state of Sao Paulo. The Reactions to Tests (RTT) questionnaire, developed by I. G. Sarason, was given to the 180 males and 173 females in the sample a week before they were to take the official examination. Official Vestibular scores were regressed on the total RTT score or its component subscales, controlling for academic ability as measured by performance on simulated Vestibulares given during the preparatory course.
The results indicate that test anxiety is a pervasive condition among the Vestibular candidates. An inverse and highly significant relationship between test anxiety and Vestibular performance is found. Three of the four RTT components, Worry, Tension, and Bodily Reactions, are shown to be correlated with Vestibular performance. Previous failure on the Vestibular is found to be strongly associated with high levels of test anxiety and with subsequent poor Vestibular performance. No significant association is found between students' socioeconomic status and test anxiety.
Women scored significantly lower on the Vestibular than do men, as has been found in Brazilian testing over the past five years. The present results indicate that, after controlling for academic ability, higher levels of test anxiety contribute significantly to the lower performance of women on the Vestibular.
Issue Date:1987
Description:199 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1987.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8721612
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1987

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