Development and validation of a questionnaire about determinants of academic success in secondary school students

Jordi Longás Mayayo, Elena Carrillo Alvarez, Albert Fornieles Deu, Jordi Riera Romaní

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1 Citation (Scopus)


© 2018 Universidad Internacional de la Rioja. All Rights Reserved. Introduction: School failure is a major challenge at individual and social levels, owing to its negative impact on social cohesion, citizen participation, economic development, and sustainabihty and also its impact on health habits. Various studies have shown the link between family socio-economic level and educational results, to the point that this factor has been regarded as their principal determinant. Nonetheless, the essentially attributing school failure to the students' milieu is only descriptive in value and could impede the development of more appropriate responses to this challenge. A better systemic and integral understanding of the phenomenon might contribute to a better approach to the problem through the development of new proposals for public policy and socio-educational actions. To this end, it is necessary to have appropriate measurement instruments that evaluate different dimensions in an integrated manner. Method: The objective of this study is to evaluate the psychometric properties of the Questionnaire on Determinants of Success at School (QDSS) in a sample of 858 secondary-school students resident in vulnerable socio-demographic settings from 5 Spanish cities. The questionnaire combines items about factors that specialist literature has significantly linked to educational attainment, excluding those that al-ready have specific validated questionnaires. Results: The principal component analysis gave 7 factors: school environment, relationships with classmates, personal expectations, social capital, ITC study resources, climate in class, and family support. The goodness of fit indices show good properties for the questionnaire. Conclusion: The QDSS is an instrument that has appropriate psychometric properties for use in identifying factors that support educational success in secondary-school students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-82
JournalRevista Espanola de Pedagogia
Issue number269
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Poverty
  • Questionnaire
  • School failure
  • Secondary education
  • Success at school
  • Validation


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