Factor structure of academic goal orientation scales and relationships with negative affective responses

Year: 1999

Author: Smith, Lorraine, E. Sinclair, Kenneth

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

This paper reports the analysis of data collected as part of a longitudinal study into the relationships between negative affective reponses and learning in senior school students. Factor analysis was carried out on two scales measuring student academic self-efficacy, goal orientations and learning strategies in a sample of 400 Year 12 students from four Sydney metropolitan high schools. The scales are Patterns of Adaptive Learning Survey and Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire. These scales have been used separately in a number of research studies but have considerable overlap in subscale structure and item content. Factor analysis was used to (i) determine the factor structure of the two scales independently and (ii) determine factors that emerge when both scales are combined. In addition, the relationships between factor scores on academic self-efficacy and goal orientations, and students' negative affective responses (depression, anxiety, stress) are discussed. Comparisons are made with the results from the first dataset of the study, reported at the 1998 AARE conference, which revealed high levels of depression, anxiety and/or stress in 31% of Year 12 and 25% of Year 11 students. This study also revealed significant relationships between the affective measures and performance-avoidance goal orientations.