Goal self-concordance moderates the relationship between achievement goals and indicators of academic adjustment


Patrick Gaudreau (2012)


Abstract: This study examined whether the good or bad outcomes associated with mastery- and performance-approach achievement goals depend on the extent to which these goals are pursued for self-concordant reasons. A sample of 220 undergraduate students completed measures of achievement goals, goal self-concordance, academic satisfaction, and academic anxiety before mid-term exams. A total of 115 participants completed a follow-up measure of their semester GPA. Results of moderated regressions revealed that mastery-approach goals were positively associated with academic satisfaction and performance, but only for students with high levels of mastery goal self-concordance. Performance-approach goals were also associated with higher performance, but only for students with high levels of performance goal self-concordance. Both types of goals were positively associated with anxiety for individuals with low levels of goal self-concordance. This study illustrates the importance of considering the joint influence of goal content and goal motivation in their association with consequential educational outcomes.

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