Gap between actual and expected time allocation to academic activities and its impact on undergraduate academic performance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This study uses survey data and administrative records collected over a three-year period to examine the gap between the amount of time students invested and the amount they were expected to invest in academic activities. The sample includes 2232 first-year and final-year undergraduate students at an elite research university in Kazakhstan. The study measured time allocation gap in terms of the degree to which the total amount of time invested in academic activities fell short of the expected amount (class attendance and out-of-class study time combined), given the student’s credit load. The study found that, on average, undergraduate students (first and fourth year) allocated 35% less time to academic activities than expected under ECTS standards or 28% less time than expected under Carnegie standards. Using a quasi-experimental research design (propensity score matching), the study found that time allocation gap had a negative impact on undergraduate academic performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-82
Number of pages18
JournalTertiary Education and Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2019



  • Academic performance
  • Carnegie credits
  • ECTS credits
  • Propensity score matching
  • Quasi-experimental design
  • Time allocation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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