[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The neural efficiency hypothesis describes the phenomenon that brighter individuals show lower brain activation than less bright individuals when working on the same cognitive tasks. The present study investigated whether the brain activation–intelligence relationship still applies when more versus less intelligent individuals perform tasks with a comparable person-specific task difficulty. In an fMRI-study, 58 persons with lower (n = 28) or respectively higher (n = 30) intelligence worked on simple and difficult inductive reasoning tasks having the same person-specific task difficulty. Consequently, less bright individuals received sample-based easy and medium tasks, whereas bright subjects received sample-based medium and difficult tasks. This design also allowed a comparison of lower versus higher intelligent individuals when working on the same tasks (i.e. sample-based medium task difficulty). In line with expectations, differences in task performance and in brain activation were only found for the subset of tasks with the same sample-based task difficulty, but not when comparing tasks with the same person-specific task difficulty. These results suggest that neural efficiency reflects an (ability-dependent) adaption of brain activation to the respective task demands.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study investigated the role that students' implicit theory of intelligence, achievement motives, and perceived competence jointly play as antecedents of their achievement goals and, as a consequence, of their intrinsic motivation and academic achievement. The sample consisted of 524 11th and 12th grade high-school students. Self-report measures were used to assess students' motivational characteristics and subsequent grade point average served as criterion for their academic achievement. Data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. Incremental theory and perceived competence predicted mastery goals. Hope of success, fear of failure, and perceived competence predicted performance-approach goals. Fear of failure, but neither entity theory nor perceived competence predicted performance-avoidance goals. Students' achievement goals predicted their intrinsic motivation and academic achievement. Mediation analyses revealed meaningful indirect effects of students' distal motivational dispositions on intrinsic motivation and academic achievement via achievement goals. Implications for achievement goal theory and future research are discussed.
Learning and Individual Differences 01/2013; 28:90–101. · 1.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To study the role of students' competence beliefs and their perceived teachers' ability evaluations for intrinsic motivation and achievement in math, 459 second graders from 27 German classrooms were examined. Students provided self-reports on their intrinsic motivation, competence beliefs and perceived teachers' ability evaluations in math. Teachers gave insight in students' math grades. Relations were analyzed by three different models: a direct, an indirect and an interaction effect model. Concerning intrinsic motivation, results provided support for both an indirect effect and an interaction effect model, but not for a direct effect model. With regard to math achievement, only the indirect model appeared to be appropriate. The finding that perceived teachers' ability evaluations had an (indirect) effect on students' intrinsic motivation and achievement in math hints at the role of significant others in the development of children's academic functioning and might guide potential interventions.
Learning and Individual Differences 08/2012; 22(4):518–522. · 1.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The self-regulation of motivation represents a key feature of self-regulated learning. Recent studies have documented that students use a variety of strategies to sustain their learning motivation and that most of these strategies have positive effects. However, less is known about how students integrate the various motivational strategies into an individual motivational regulation profile and which kind of profiles are most adaptive with respect to enhanced effort and persistence. To shed more light on this issue, we examined the motivational regulation profiles within two samples of German high-school and college students. In Study 1 (N = 231 11th and 12th grade students), latent profile analysis revealed five subgroups of students holding different motivational regulation profiles. In Study 2 (N = 600 college students), the five class solution was replicated with slight changes in the nature of the profiles. In both studies, profiles with a higher overall level of motivational strategy use were associated with a higher level of effort and achievement. Regarding differences in profile shape, results indicated that profiles emphasizing mastery and/or performance-approach self-talk were most adaptive. Implications of the findings for future research on motivational regulation are discussed.
Learning and Individual Differences 06/2012; 22(3):269–279. · 1.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Building on the notion that motivation energizes and directs resources in achievement situations, we argue that goal orientations affect perceptions of own intelligence and that the effect of goals on performance is partly mediated by self-estimates of intelligence. Studies 1 (n = 89) and 2 (n = 165) investigated the association of goal orientations and self-estimated intelligence in university-student samples. Study 3 (n = 164) tested an integrated model of goal orientations and self-estimated intelligence to predict school performance. Goal orientations explained 7 to 11% of the variance in self-estimated intelligence (controlling for gender, age, and psychometric intelligence). Persons with high performance-approach goals consistently overestimated and persons holding high performance-avoidance goals underestimated their intelligence. Performance goals affected academic performance indirectly via self-estimated intelligence, whereas learning goals were directly related to performance. Findings are discussed regarding their importance for the understanding of the function of motivation and ability self-perceptions for performance.
Learning and Individual Differences 06/2012; 22(3):280–289. · 1.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Much phenotypic research aims to identify which individual and familial characteristics explain individual differences in academic achievement. Behavior genetic studies can add informative value by analyzing the sources of this variation. The objective of the present study was to investigate the genetic and environmental origins of academic achievement and of two important and widely accepted predictors of school achievement, i.e. general cognitive ability (CA) and domain-specific self-perceived abilities (SPA). Results are based on cross-sectional data from the German twin study CoSMoS (97 MZ twin pairs, 183 DZ twin pairs; mean age 13.1years, SD=0.87). In line with previous research we confirmed the significance of genetic influences for all three variables, yielding heritability estimates between 30% and 62%. Multivariate genetic analyses further indicated that the genetic correlations between the variables were substantial and that SPAs in two school domains (German and Math) correlated with academic achievement for genetic rather than environmental reasons.
Personality and Individual Differences 02/2012; 53:381-386. · 1.88 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Goal orientations are thought to be an important predictor of scholastic achievement. The present paper investigated the joint influence of goal orientations, intelligence, and personality on school performance in a sample of N = 520 11th and 12th graders (303 female; mean age M = 16.94 years). Intelligence, the Big Five factors of personality (Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness to Experience, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness) as well as goal orientations (learning, performance-approach, -avoidance, and work-avoidance goals) were assessed. When school performance was regressed on all variables simultaneously, intelligence, Openness to Experience, Conscientious, and learning goals predicted school performance. Learning goals additionally partially mediated the association of Openness to Experience and Conscientious, respectively, with GPA. Results are discussed with regard to the importance of goal orientations in academic settings.Research Highlights► Learning, performance-approach, and –avoidance goals predict GPA beyond intelligence. ► Learning goals predict GPA beyond intelligence and personality. ► Learning goals mediate the association between personality and GPA.
Learning and Individual Differences 01/2011; 21(2):196-200. · 1.58 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study investigates whether sex differences in school achievement in three domains are associated with sex differences in intelligence, personality and school-related motivation. In a sample of 1353 Austrian eight graders (552 males, 801 females; mean age 13.74 years, SD = .47), intelligence, the Big Five personality factors as well as domain-specific school anxiety, ability self-perceptions and interests were assessed as predictors of grades in German, Math and English. Most predictors yielded significant mean differences between sexes. Intelligence and ability self-perceptions were the strongest predictors of grades in all domains. In Math, additional predictors of grades were Conscientiousness and Neuroticism. Grades in German and English were also predicted by the interaction between sex and Extraversion. While for girls a higher level of Extraversion was associated with better grades, the opposite was true for boys. Only in German, there was an additional interaction between sex and verbal intelligence indicating that girls benefit even more than boys from a high level of verbal intelligence.
Personality and Individual Differences 01/2010; 48(4):481-486. · 1.88 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, different methodological approaches have been discussed as an explanation for inconsistencies in studies investigating sex differences in different intelligences. The present study investigates sex differences in manifest sum scores, factor score estimates, and latent verbal, numerical, figural intelligence, as well as fluid and crystallized intelligence as measured by the German Intelligence-Structure-Test 2000-R (IST 2000-R; Liepmann, Beauducel, Brocke, & Amthauer, 2007). The not population-representative sample consisted of 977 German 11th and 12th graders enrolled in a “Gymnasium” (551 female; mean age: M=16.70; SD=0.65) who completed the IST 2000-R. Sex differences in fluid and crystallized intelligence were not influenced by the method applied with men performing better than women. However, extent and direction of sex differences in verbal, numerical, and figural intelligence differed by the method applied. Whereas there was a male advantage in all three factors measured as manifest sum scores, women performed better in verbal intelligence as measured by factor scores or as latent variables. Effect sizes of sex differences in numerical and figural intelligence were also greatly reduced when applying the latter two methods. Results are discussed with regard to their theoretical and practical implications.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: It was assumed that the effect of motivational regulation strategies on achievement is mediated by effort management and moderated by intelligence. A sample of 231 11th and 12th grade German high-school students provided self-reports on their use of motivational regulation strategies and effort management and completed an intelligence test. Students' half-year grades (GPA) were assessed six months later. As expected, motivational regulation strategies were not directly related to GPA but showed positive effects on students' effort management which in turn predicted students' GPA. Intelligence and effort management were equally strong direct predictors of GPA. Also as expected, more intelligent students benefitted more from using some, but not all, motivational regulation strategies in terms of increased effort management. Implications of these findings regarding the effectiveness of motivational regulation strategies are discussed.
Learning and Individual Differences - LEARN INDIVID DIFFER. 01/2009; 19(4).
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The present study examined to which extent different motivational concepts contribute to the prediction of school achievement among adolescent students independently from intelligence. A sample of 342 11th and 12th graders (age M=16.94; SD=.71) was investigated. Students gave self-reports on domain-specific values, ability self-perceptions, goals, and achievement motives. Hierarchical regression and relative weights analyses were performed with grades in math and German as dependent variables and intelligence as well as motivational measures as independent variables. Beyond intelligence, different motivational constructs incrementally contributed to the prediction of school achievement. Domain-specific ability self-perceptions and values showed the highest increments whereas achievement motives and goal orientations explained less additional variance. Even when prior achievement was controlled, some motivational concepts still proved to contribute to the prediction of subsequent performance. In the light of these findings, we discuss the importance of motivation in educational contexts.
Learning and Individual Differences - LEARN INDIVID DIFFER. 01/2009; 19(1):80-90.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the present study we examined the nomological network of achievement motivation and personality by inspecting the relationships between four goal orientations (learning, performance-approach, performance-avoidance, work avoidance), the Big Five personality traits, and intelligence. Within a sample of university students (N = 160), relations were examined on the facet level of the Big Five. Inspection of associations between personality facets and goal orientations provided a clearer picture about why goals and personality traits are related and some of the previous inconsistent results could be explained by opposing associations at this level of analysis. Intelligence and goal orientations shared no common variance. Findings are discussed with reference to a hypothesized approach and avoidance temperament and the nomological network integrating personality, motivation, and ability dimensions.
Personality and Individual Differences 05/2008; 44(7):1454–1464. · 1.88 Impact Factor