Defense Date

2016

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Education

First Advisor

Dr. Kathleen Cauley

Abstract

This study examined relationships between college students’ writing achievement goal orientations, writing self-regulation, and writing grades. The study was conducted in a postsecondary setting at a large public university in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. Using multivariate quantitative techniques (confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modeling), survey and writing sample data were gathered to address the following research questions: Do college students’ writing achievement goals relate to their writing grades; do college students’ writing achievement goals relate to their writing self-regulation; and, does writing self-regulation partially mediate the relationship between writing achievement goals and writing grades in college writing classrooms? A convenience sample of 107 participants completed both the survey and writing prompt portions of the study. Findings showed that all three writing achievement goal orientations tested (mastery, performance-approach, and performance-avoidance) were related to college students’ writing self-regulation. However, only writing performance-approach orientation was related to college students’ writing grades.


Additionally, writing self-regualtion did not partially mediate the relationship between all three writing achievement goal orientations and writing grades as expected. Writing self-regulation did fully mediate the relationships between writing mastery and performance-avoidance goal orientations and writing grades, but failed to mediate the relationship between writing performance-approach goal orientation and writing grades. These findings contradict some of the prior literature on achievement goal orientations and self-regulation. However, these results help bridge a gap in the achievement goal orientation and self-regulation research, as prior studies have predominantly focused on PK-12 settings and domains other than writing (reading, mathematics, science, etc.). The findings from this study are limited by the size and nature of the sample, and the survey items used. Future studies should attempt to gather further insight into the goals college students set for their writing, how those goals impact their self-regulation behaviors, and ultimately their writing grades.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

11-23-2016

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