After high school, students see college as the next phase of their lives. But aside from society and the job market dictating that they should attend university, what other reasons could motivate kids to aim for a diploma?

A recent study featured on ScienceDaily.com reveals that knowing the answer to this question may predict a person's performance in school.

Researchers from Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester in New York tracked 2,500 college students from two different educational backgrounds: one group took a two-year course in a community college, while another attended a four-year course in a liberal arts college. The volunteers were asked to answer a survey about their intentions for going to college and academic performances.

The results show that students who were in school to study what they were interested in as well as to challenge themselves had better grades than others, and most of them belong to financially and socially stable families. Students of lower socioeconomic status were more likely to focus on the need to improve their financial situation. College students whose aim is to build relationships were found to have below average performance.

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This just goes to show that having the right goal and focus for being in college may help kids excel in school. Having a heart-to-heart talk with your kids about their strengths and future goals may help steer them toward a clearer direction once they're in college.

(Photo by Parker Knight via Flickr Creative Commons)

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