Academic competency is the multidimensional characteristics of a learner – including skills, attitudes, and behaviors – that factor into their academic success. These characteristics can be separated and considered in one of two primary domains: academic skills or academic enablers (DiPerna and Elliot 2000; Elliot and DiPerna 2002). Academic skills are both the basic and complex skills (e.g., reading, writing, calculating, and critical thinking) needed to access and interact with content-specific knowledge. Academic enablers, however, are the attitudes and behaviors (e.g., interpersonal skills, motivation, study skills, and engagement) that a learner needs in order to take advantage of education.
Research indicates that prior achievement and interpersonal skills influence motivation, thereby impacting study skills and engagement (e.g., time on task), which are skills positively associated with achievement (DiPerna et al. 2002, 2005).
References and Readings
- DiPerna, J. C., & Elliot, S. N. (2000). The academic competence evaluation scales (ACES college). San Antonio: The Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- DiPerna, J. C., Volpe, R. J., & Elliott, S. N. (2002). A model of academic enablers and elementary reading/language arts achievement. School Psychology Review, 31 (3), 298–312.Google Scholar
- Edl, H. M., Jones, M. H., & Estell, D. B. (2008). Ethnicity and english proficiency: Teacher perceptions of academic and interpersonal competence in European American and Latino students. School Psychology Review, 37 (1), 38–45.Google Scholar
- Elliot, S. N., & DiPerna, J. C. (2002). Assessing the academic competence of college students: Validation of a self-report measure of skills and enablers. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 15 (2), 87–100.Google Scholar
- Hutto, L. (2009). Measuring academic competence in college students: A review of research and instruments. Saarbrücken: VDM Verlag.Google Scholar
- Shapiro, E. S. (2008). From research to practice: Promoting academic competence for underserved students. School Psychology Review, 37 (1), 46–51.Google Scholar