Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership


Educational Leadership and Curriculum

First Reader/Committee Chair

Eugene Wong


Research on academic entitlement (AE) in college students has provided support for its maladaptive nature. Students high in AE are reported to present greater levels of externality in the locus of control, exhibit behaviors and actions that are inconsistent with traditional academic norms, score lower on assessments, and hold expectations that are aligned with academic consumerism. However, research examining AE and its effects on student behavior have relied on AE scores collected after students have attained some collegiate experience and have yet to evaluate interventions that may reduce the corresponding implications of AE. Using survey data collected from 941 matriculating first-year college students, this study sought to identify demographic differences in pre-collegiate levels of AE; and determine the relative importance of AE in predicting first-term unit completion rates, the utilization of academic support services (i.e., tutoring and supplemental instruction), and first-year retention. Furthermore, this study sought to evaluate the mediating/moderating effect of participation in a freshmen seminar course. The results of this study were mixed. While sex difference in AE were found, and partial support was found for AE differences by first-generation status, AE differences by Pell Grant status, under-represented minority status, and freshmen seminar course enrollment were not supported. Furthermore, associations between the AE scales and first-term course completion rates, utilization of student academic support services, and first-year retention were not supported. Given notable differences between survey completers and non-completers on several measures of academic performance, this study suggests that the reliance on voluntary survey completion may fail to secure responses from an academically entitled population. Furthermore, relying on a single measurement of academic entitlement in students prior to the attainment of collegiate experience fails to address the potential for the development of AE during the collegiate experience.