28-09-2016 | Empirical Research
Implicit Theories, Expectancies, and Values Predict Mathematics Motivation and Behavior across High School and College
Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Youth and Adolescence | Uitgave 6/2017Log in om toegang te krijgen
Mathematics motivation declines for many adolescents, which limits future educational and career options. The present study sought to identify predictors of this decline by examining whether implicit theories assessed in ninth grade (incremental/entity) predicted course-taking behaviors and utility value in college. The study integrated implicit theory with variables from expectancy-value theory to examine potential moderators and mediators of the association of implicit theories with college mathematics outcomes. Implicit theories and expectancy-value variables were assessed in 165 American high school students (47 % female; 92 % White), who were then followed into their college years, at which time mathematics courses taken, course-taking intentions, and utility value were assessed. Implicit theories predicted course-taking intentions and utility value, but only self-concept of ability predicted courses taken, course-taking intentions, and utility value after controlling for prior mathematics achievement and baseline values. Expectancy for success in mathematics mediated associations between self-concept of ability and college outcomes. This research identifies self-concept of ability as a stronger predictor than implicit theories of mathematics motivation and behavior across several years: math self-concept is critical to sustained engagement in mathematics.