Note to first-year university students: Just do it! In the end, the fact that you study may be more important than how you study.
Education is important to society, yet many students do not complete the educations they start. In the present study of 426 students at a Norwegian university, we examined the predictive value of study-related variables with regard to student status one and five years after initial enrollment (stayers versus dropouts). The logistic regression analyses indicated that older students and students who spent less time studying were more likely to drop out after the first year. Students who completed less ECTS during the first year were more likely to drop out after five years. Contrary to our hypothesis, learning approaches and procrastination were not significant predictors for dropout. Overall, just studying and staying (on) the course mattered more for student success in the first year than self-reported measures on how the academic work was actually done. A caveat relates to the low response rate of the study (∼9%), which is addressed in the discussion.