Publication Details

Smith, L. (2005). An investigation into student approaches to learning at a multicultural university using the Revised Study Process Questionnaire. In A. Brew & C. Asmar (Eds.), Higher Education in a Changing World: Higher Education Research and Development (pp. 533-541). Sydney: HERDSA.


This paper is an exploratory study into student approaches to learning at a multicultural university. It is particularly relevant to higher education today, which is taking on a more global perspective, especially in the developing world where this university is situated. The instrument used to measure student approaches to learning is the revised Study Process Questionnaire (SPQ) and the results are analysed using factor analysis. The SPQ was revised in 2001 to take into account the changing nature of students in higher education, with emphasis on students from diverse cultural backgrounds, and was therefore considered appropriate for this study. The main findings identify the problem of distinguishing between different kinds of motivation and the motive-strategy combination within constructs. The small-scale nature of this research means that the results are not as conclusive as could be hoped, but they provide an important starting point for more extensive research in this field.