Contemporary Psychology, Vol. 15, No. 1, 2012, 81-95

Original scientific paper

The Relationship of Effort in Learning Mathematics to Achievement Goals, Beliefs and Personality Traits

Daria Rovan - Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb, Zagreb

Fulltext (croatian, pages 81-95).pdf

The aim of this study was to explore the relationship of effort in learning mathematics to university students’ personality traits, epistemic beliefs, self-efficacy and achievement goals. Two different aspects of effort were measured: students’ self-reports concerning effort invested in understanding and mastering learning materials and time spent weekly in learning mathematics. Participants were 200 engineering students in their second year of study. Students completed questionnaire on personality traits, epistemic beliefs (simplicity and justification), self-efficacy beliefs, achievement goals and their previous achievement in mathematics. Results show that achievement goals, epistemic and self-efficacy beliefs, as well as previous mathematics achievement, were significantly related to perceived effort. However, time invested in learning mathematics was significantly related to consciousness and achievement goals. The achievement goals theory had substantive explanatory value in explaining individual differences in invested effort.

effort, learning mathematics, achievement goals, personality traits, selfefficacy

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