Does Instructor Support Correlates to Task Orientation in Higher Education Students? An Explanatory Study


  • Shallu Sansanwal National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore



Instructor support, task orientation, WIHIC scale, critical thinking of students


Background: Instructor support has been found as an important element of classroom environment which impacts students’ academic achievement. Instructor support helps students to understand the task better, attach task value and motivate them to achieve the mastery goal objectives. Students on the other hand achieve mastery goals when they are more task oriented. Therefore, it is important to understand the relationship between instructor support (guidance, care & questioning) with task orientation in higher education students.

Problem statement: The present study recognizes the gap in the literature in explaining a link between instructor support and task orientation in higher education students. There is also a gap in understanding the types of questions that helps students to scaffold and learn better. This study aims to fulfill this gap by investigating how instructor support is related to student task orientation in higher education programs and exploring through student perspective how questions by instructor guide them in their task.

Proposition of the study: This is a mixed method study. What is Happening in the Class (WIHIC) scale was used to get the quantitative data from 119 participants from Master’s Methodology Coursework of MED 872. Qualitative phase of the study answered the research question about how questions by instructor helped students in better guidance in task. The results showed that Instructor Support and Task orientation are correlated significantly (t=0.23* at p ? 0.05 levels) and questioning in turn is an important aspect of task orientation as it increases understanding and critical thinking of students.

Author Biography

  • Shallu Sansanwal, National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
    Early Childhood and special needs Education


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