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Achievement motivation
Multiple goals
Performance goals
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Luo, W., Hogan, D., Paris, S. G., & Luo, Z. (2011). Do performance goals promote learning? A pattern analysis of Singapore students' achievement goals. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 36(2), 165-176.
This study investigated how achievement goals are combined to affect students’ learning. We used a multiple goals perspective, based on mastery (i.e., mastery approach) and performance (including both approach and avoidance components) goals, to examine the achievement goal patterns of 1697 Singapore Secondary 3 students in their math study. Four types of goal clusters emerged from latent class cluster analyses: Diffuse (moderate multiple), Moderate Mastery (moderate mastery / low performance approach and avoidance), Success Oriented (moderate mastery / high performance approach and avoidance), and Approach (high mastery and performance approach / low performance avoidance). Analyses of covariance were conducted to compare these four clusters on eleven cognitive, behavioral, and affective learning outcomes. In general, students in the Success Oriented and Approach groups were higher on self-efficacy, subjective task values, class engagement, homework engagement, time management, and meta-cognitive self-regulation than those in the other two groups. In addition, students in the Approach and Moderate Mastery groups were more likely to make effort when encountering difficulties in learning math, showed lower test anxiety, lower negative affect, and achieved higher scores in math than students in the other two groups. These findings suggest that the goal profile with high mastery and performance approach goals combined with low performance avoidance goals is most beneficial for learning, whereas high performance approach goals, when associated with performance avoidance goals, have some negative effects on affective outcomes. The patterns help to refine distinctions in performance goals, and are discussed in the context of academic achievement in Singapore.
This is the final draft, after peer-review, of a manuscript published in Contemporary Educational Psychology. The published version is available online at
0361-476X (online)
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