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Session Overview
PAP-08: Goal Orientation in School
Time: Tuesday, 28/Aug/2012: 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Session Chair: Natalie Fischer, German Institute for International Educational Research DIPF
Location: 311


Differences in students’ school motivation: A multilevel latent class modelling approach.

Hanke Korpershoek

University of Groningen, Netherlands, The

In this paper, multilevel latent class analysis is used to classify students into meaningful clusters as regards their school motivation. Using an achievement goals perspective, our main aim was to identity different ‘types’ of students and to investigate whether students adopt one or more goals simultaneously. To our knowledge, this is an unexplored area in the field of school motivation studies in secondary education. The study included a sample of 1,434 9th grade students from the Netherlands. The data used were collected as part of a large-scale longitudinal study in secondary education, the so-called COOL5-18 project. We used the Inventory of School Motivation of Ali and McInerney (2004) to measure students’ school motivation, including the four dimensions performance, mastery, social, and extrinsic motivation. Based on their scores on these dimensions, students were categorized into clusters of students with similar response patterns. The multilevel latent class analysis suggested that a 6-cluster solution fitted the data best. We observed that some students were either mastery-oriented or performance-oriented, but also that many students adopted several achievement goals simultaneously. The latter students had consistent response patterns across the four motivation dimensions. In the final paper, the students from different clusters will be compared with regard to their background characteristics and their educational attainment to find out which clusters of students are more (or less) successful in education than others.

Extracurricular Participation and the development of learning goal orientation in adolescence: The impact of school-quality

Natalie Fischer, Desiree Theis

German Institute for International Educational Research DIPF, Germany

This research aims to combine models of motivational development in adolescence and school-effectiveness research. Effects of extracurricular participation at school on the development of learning goal orientation are investigated. Empirical studies often find a decline of school motivation throughout adolescence. Based on the stage-environment fit approach and on a large body of empirical evidence school-based extracurricular activities are supposed to be settings that provide special opportunities to enhance motivation, thus protecting students against a motivation decline. Only recently researchers started to include quality features of extracurricular activities in theoretical models and evaluations of after-school program effectiveness. However, these measures usually rely on student perceptions. This paper adds to former research in focussing individual development of learning goal orientation based on extracurricular participation including process-quality of extracurricular activities (namely participation, challenge and social support) as a quality feature at school-level. Analyses are based on a subsample of the German “Study on the development of all-day schools”. 2554 students from 98 schools filled in questionnaires in grade 5, 7 and 9. Quality of extracurricular activities was assessed from more than 6000 students of the same schools at the first measurement point – the aggregated measures are included as predictors at school-level in a three level HLM-model including school-level, student-level and time. Cross-level interactions are analyzed to examine the influence of extracurricular participation on the development of learning goal orientation as a function of school-quality. Results show that effects of extracurricular participation on the development of learning goal orientation are dependent on school-quality.

School goal structure: associations with students’ perception of teachers, academic self-concept, intrinsic motivation, effort, and help seeking behavior

Einar M Skaalvik, Sidsel Skaalvik

Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway

The purpose of this study was to test how students’ perception of the school goal structure was related to their perception of the teacher-student relationship. We also tested how school goal structure, directly or indirectly through students perception of the teacher-student relationship was related to students’ academic self-concept, intrinsic motivation, effort, and help seeking behavior. Participants in the study were 8971 students from 4th to 10th grade in one county in Norway. All students from 4th to 10th grade in 22 out of 25 municipals in the particular county participated in the study. Data were analyzed by means of structural equation modeling for latent variables (SEM). Latent variables indicating learning and performance goal structure were negatively, but weakly related. Learning goal structure was strongly related to students’ perception of the teacher-student relationship. It was also positively and directly related to academic self-concept, intrinsic motivation, effort, and help seeking behavior. Additionally, learning goal structure was indirectly and positively related to academic self-concept, intrinsic motivation, and help seeking behavior, through students’ perception of the teacher-student relationship. Performance goal structure was negatively, but weakly related to students’ perception of the teacher-student relationship, but was not significantly related to any of the other variables in the study. The pattern of relations was the same for elementary students (4th through 7th grade) and middle school students (8th through 10th grade). However, some of the relations were stronger for middle schools students than for elementary school students.

Costs of Neo-Liberal Capitalist Values in Education: Social-Approval Seeking, Performance-Approach Goals and the Condoning of Cheating

Caroline Julia Pulfrey, Butera Fabrizio

University of Lausanne, Switzerland

The 2008 economic crisis has fuelled reflection about the relations between neo-liberal capitalist values of self-interest and competition with others. School being a vehicle of socialization for life, the aim of this research is to analyze, by means of an integrated, hierarchical model, the relations between student adherence to self-enhancement values of power and achievement, the individual-level equivalent of the neo-liberal ideology, and the condoning of cheating. Results of three studies (N = 1,277) using mediation analysis and structural equation modeling revealed firstly that student adherence to self-enhancement life-goals predicted the adoption of achievement goals focused on outperforming others, namely performance-approach goals and this value-goal relationship was mediated by the motivation to gain social approval. Secondly, adherence to self-enhancement values was found to predict the condoning of cheating, namely the viewing of cheating as relatively acceptable, and that this relationship was mediated by performance-approach goals.

Contextual influences have been shown to have a significant impact on norms. Consequently, a fourth, study (N = 477) was run to test the hypothesis that self-enhancement values should predict condoning of cheating more in a condition in which a normatively salient source promotes self-enhancement, than in a condition in which the same normatively salient source promotes self-transcendence values. Results revealed that increased adherence to self-enhancement values only predicted increased condoning of cheating in the pro-self-enhancement ideology condition. Results are discussed in the light of how understanding the motivational processes behind students’ normative acceptance of cheating can contribute to the development of effective anti-cheating interventions.

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