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Title:The Determinants of Children's Achievement: A New Framework
Author(s):Elliott, Elaine Sally
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Psychology, Social
Abstract:This study tested the usefulness of a proposed framework in understanding the important determinants of children's achievement behavior and in understanding the determinants of learned helpless and mastery-oriented responses to failure. The formulation extends and integrates the achievement domains considered by other researchers by conceptualizing achievement situations as eliciting three achievement goals: to develop ability, to demonstrate high ability, and to avoid a demonstration of low ability. The hypothesized determinants of achievement (i.e., children's perceptions about their present and potential ability and their perceptions about the importance of positive evaluation and the importance of the knowledge acquired from the task) were conceptualized as exerting an influence on achievement behavior through determining the expected-value of each of the three goals. Manipulation of the conditions presumed to influence the specified cognitions resulted in the predicted task preferences, performance patterns, verbalizations, and affective responses. Additionally an initial test provided evidence that perceptions of insufficient ability interacting with perceptions of how important it was to be positively evaluated mediated the learned helpless response to failure (i.e., deterioration of problem-solving strategies, attribution for failure to uncontrollable factors, and the expression of negative affect). This maladaptive response to failure was found to be ameliorated under conditions which emphasized the utility of knowledge acquired from the achievement task.
Issue Date:1980
Description:82 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1980.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8108499
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-13
Date Deposited:1980

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