The interplay of personality, perceptions of the learning environment and learning strategies: a study amongst Business Students

J.F.H. Nijhuis*, M.S.R. Segers, W.H. Gijselaers

*Corresponding author for this work

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27 Citations (Web of Science)


Previous research on students’ learning strategies has examined the relationships between either perceptions of the learning environment or personality and learning strategies. The focus of this study was on the joint relationships between the students’ perceptions of the learning environment, their personality, and the learning strategies they used. This study was conducted in an international business studies programme, with 522 students participating in the research project. Path analyses were conducted to assess the nature of the relationships between personality traits, perceptions of the learning environment and learning strategies. The first path analysis revealed that two personality traits, conscientiousness and openness to experience, are related to learning strategies. The second path analysis indicated that students’ perceptions of the various elements of the learning environment influence their learning strategies. A third path analysis revealed that personality traits are only slightly related to perceptions of the learning environment. Finally, the path analysis of the full model indicated both direct and indirect relationships between conscientiousness, openness to experience, and learning strategies. Perceptions of learning environment components mediated the relationships between the other personality traits and learning strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-77
Number of pages18
JournalStudies in Higher Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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