NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ869204
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1696-2095
Students' Goal Achievement: Exploring Individual and Situational Factors
Derrer-Rendall, Nicola; Wesson, Caroline; Anderson, Lindsey; Bould, Emma
Electronic Journal of Research in Educational Psychology, v7 n3 p1031-1052 2009
Introduction: This paper reports a preliminary investigation of the individual and situational factors affecting goal achievement in a psychology student population. The impact of normative information on goal achievement is considered in relation to goal commitment, optimism, gender and academic setting. Method: Psychology students (n=121) from two British universities completed a cognitive task after being told that other had found the task easy (high-performing norm) or difficult to achieve (low-performing norm). A control condition was also used where no normative information was given. Measures of Optimism (Life Orientation Task, Scheier & Carver, 1985) and Goal Commitment (Klein et al., 2001) were taken and comparisons between the goal achievement of groups high/low in each of these was considered, along with differences according to gender and university. Results: The results show that when given normative information regarding the performance of others participants high in optimism gained higher goal achievement scores than those low in optimism, but only under the low performing norm condition. No other significant differences were found in the experimental conditions. However, in the control group significant differences in goal achievement were seen between high and low goal commitment participants as well as between the participants at the two universities. Conclusion: The unexpected findings indicate that there may be the potential for pre-existing factors relating to the student that have a greater impact upon goal achievement than the experimental manipulations used here. Further research is being undertaken to investigate these. (Contains 2 tables.)
University of Almeria, Education & Psychology I+D+i. Faculty of Psychology Department of Educational and Developmental Psychology, Carretera de Sacramento s/n, 04120 LaCanada de San Urbano, Almeria, Spain. Tel: +34-950-015354; Fax: +34-950-015083; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)