Full Length Research Paper

Association of student position in classroom and school performance

Victor Alberto Tagliacolloab, Gilson Luiz Volpatoac, Alfredo Pereira Junior ad

UNESP – São Paulo State University, Institute of Biosciences. Distrito de Rubião Jr., s/n, CxP 510, CEP 18618-970, Botucatu, São Paulo, Brazil.

bMSc. Student, Department of Morphology, São Paulo State University, Institute of Biosciences. Distrito de Rubião Jr., s/n, CxP 510, CEP 18618-970, Botucatu, São Paulo, Brazil.

cAdjunct Professor, Caunesp, Department of Physiology, São Paulo State University, Institute of Biosciences. Distrito de Rubião Jr., s/n, CxP 510, CEP 18618-970, Botucatu, São Paulo, Brazil.

Adjunct Professor, Department of Education, São Paulo State University, Institute of Biosciences. Distrito de Rubião Jr., s/n, CxP 510, CEP 18618-970, Botucatu, São Paulo, Brazil. 

*Corresponding author e-mail: victor_tagliacollo@yahoo.com.br

Received 15 May, 2010; Accepted 23 June, 2010

Abstract

We analyzed whether the position of students in classroom is correlated with academic performance, and which factors might be involved. The sample consisted of 16 classrooms in a school year bimester, each one with around 30 students. Each student's position was registered in classroom maps and the reasons for the students' seat choice were gathered by a questionnaire. School performance and classroom absences of each student were collected directly from the teachers' register notebook. We found that better performances of students at school correlate with lower percentages of absence and choices of seating positions closer to the board. Moreover, the main reason to sit in a front position was motivation for learning. We suggest that school performance is associated to students’ position in the classroom because both are affected by the student motivation for learning. As a consequence, changing students' position in the classroom without increasing their motivation is not likely to improve school performance.

Keywords: Classroom, seating position, academic performance, motivation.