Ruth, T. K., & Emmert, J. L, (2019). Understanding how students' beliefs influence their expectancy to possess effective writing skills in the future. Journal of Agricultural Education, 60(4), 181-197. doi: 10.5032/jae.2019.04181
In order to address complex challenges of the 21st century, colleges of agriculture have to produce career ready graduates. Despite industry professionals consistently identifying writing as an essential skill for perspective employees, they have identified a lack of writing skills amongst college graduates. To help prepare the future workforce, there is a need to understand what influences college of agriculture students to believe they will be successful at writing in the future. This study used a conceptual framework that consisted of expectancy value theory (EVT), self-efficacy theory, and writing apprehension. An online survey was distributed to freshman in the College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and was completed by 368 respondents. Students neither agreed nor disagreed that writing offered them intrinsic value or caused writing apprehension, but they did agree it provided utility and attainment value. Additionally,
students agreed they possessed self-efficacy and would be successful at writing in the future. Increased utility value, attainment value, intrinsic value, and self-efficacy led to increased expectancy to succeed at writing while increased writing apprehension decreased expectation for success. Agricultural educators and communicators should consider these findings when teaching writing skills.