Publications & Resources

On the Links Between Students’ Motivational Patterns and Their Perceptions of, Beliefs About, and Performance on Different Types of Science Assessments: A Multidimensional Approach to Achievement Validation

Jul 2002

Angela M. Haydel and Robert W. Roeser

Snow conceived of performance as emerging from a transaction between a person, and all the relevant resources that she brings to a situation, and the situation itself. When confronted by a task, for example, the person cobbles together a “complex” (combination) of her cognitive and motivational resources to meet situational demands. This research sought to examine the link between different situational demands—in this case, three different types of science achievement tests (multiple choice, constructed response, and performance assessment)—and perceptions, beliefs and performance of high school students characterized by three well-established motivational patterns—intrinsic-mastery, ego-success, and academically-helpless. We compared students across the three motivational patterns with respect to their efficacy for working on the tests, their beliefs about whether these tests were valid measures of their science knowledge, and their observed performance on the multiple-choice and constructed response tests. We found that students varying in motivational pattern could be reliably distinguished by their (a) efficacy for working on multiple-choice and constructed response tests, (b) beliefs about the validity of multiple-choice and constructed response tests in revealing their science knowledge, and (c) performance on the multiple-choice and constructed response tests when quantitative and verbal ability are controlled for. However, motivational pattern did not relate to efficacy for or validity beliefs about performance assessments. Perhaps the flexible nature of performance assessments facilitates all students’ goal pursuits and performance whereas multiple-choice and constructed response tests do not.

Haydel, A. M., & Roeser, R. W. (2002). On the links between students’ motivational patterns and their perceptions of, beliefs about, and performance on different types of science assessments: A multidimensional approach to achievement validation (CSE Report 573). Los Angeles: University of California, Los Angeles, National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST).