Patience Is A Virtue : The Effect Of Students’ Time Preferences On Academic Results

Collection Type



Faculty of Business and Law

School or Research Centre

School of Business


Contact Dr Margaret Giles (m.giles@ecu.edu.au) at Edith Cowan University to determine access conditions.

Margaret Giles: m.giles@ecu.edu.au


Edith Cowan University Research Online


Edith Cowan University - Faculty of Business and Law Teaching and Learning Grant


This dataset was constructed from 114 surveys completed by 191 Edith Cowan University’s first year Economics students in Semesters 1 and 2, 2011(August).

Data variables includes gender, enrolment type (full-time, part-time, local, international), postcode (as a proxy for socio-economic status), parent’s highest level of education (as a proxy for income effect or expectation of educational achievement), previous week’s tutorial attendance (as a proxy for commitment to study) and twenty choice/statements. Each of these choice/decision statements requires students to choose between ‘payment in one-months time’ (of a fixed amount) and ‘payment in seven-months time’ (ranging from slightly more than the fixed amount chosen for ‘payment in one-months time’ to an amount that is double the fixed amount).

Additional Information

The “Patience is a virtue : the effect of students’ time preferences on academic results” project has been funded by a Edith Cowan University Faculty of Business and Law Teaching and Learning Grant and the IP arising from research rests with that organisation.

Data collected by Dr Margaret Giles of Edith Cowan University.


This research used the survey method for data collection and a convenience sample.

Research Activity Title

Patience is a virtue: the effect of students’ time preferences on academic results”

Research Activity Description

The research used the methodology of Castillo et al. (2008) to uncover links between students’ discount rates (impatience), their tutorial attendance and their academic achievement with controls for ability and other socio-economic variables.

The research hypothesized that there is a correlation between time preferences and academic results. The research examined the link between impatience, lack of self-control and procrastination, and poorer results in academic areas that require time to build up their knowledge and proficiency such as mathematics, science, economics and finance.

If a link between impatience and academic results can be established, relatively high discount rates (an indication of impatience) can act as an early warning system for the educators that certain students may be at risk. This will enable the Faculty to run diagnostic tests for impatience, alongside Edith Cowan University literacy and numeracy tests, and implement appropriate learning support programs.

Start of data collection time period


End of data collection time period




File Format(s)

Stata 13

File Size


Viewing Instructions

Requires the use of the Stata 13 software.

Access Rights

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