Conceptualizing Institutional Policies for Students’ Academic Success in Cambodian Universities: What Matters for Policy?

  •  Rany Sam    
  •  Thongma Souriyavongsa    
  •  Ahmad Nurulazam Md Zain    
  •  Hazri Jamil    
  •  Xiaojuan Wu    
  •  Seng Sovath    


The Cambodian government aims to promote students’ academic success in the country’s tertiary education. In order to reach this goal, it is important to explore possible potential factors that determine the educational attainment of Cambodian students. There has been no previous research on students’ academic success in Cambodian higher learning institutions, while this topic has been widely researched in the United States and some developed countries since the 1970’s. Accordingly, a number of research models have been developed by famous scholars to determine institutional factors which lead to the outcome of better academic performance in post secondary education. Therefore, this paper intends to conceptualize the academic experiences connected to existing institutional policies for contributing to the enhancement of students’ academic success in the specific context of Cambodian higher education institutions. In this paper, Astin’s theory (1984, 1993, 1999) and a Tinto’s theory (1975, 1993) are employed to link the concept of institutional policies and Cambodian students’ academic success because they model the relationship between institutional experiences of students, which are deemed to be relevant to the current status of Cambodian educational policies. Based on these concepts, this paper will propose ten variables as predicting factors that influence institutional policies toward students’ academic success and will design a conceptual model to elaborate this influence within the Cambodian educational system. Thus, this model to predict students’ academic success is proposed as a result of a literature review among the relationships of theoretical model of student input (pre-entry attributes), academic environment (institutional experiences and policies), and students’ academic success. Based on these relationships, ten propositions are developed.

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