Date: 31 Jan 2014

The Relationship Between Goal Orientation and Academic Achievement in Hong Kong: The Role of Context

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Abstract

Previous research has examined how goal orientations relate to a wide range of contextual variables. However, there is surprisingly little research examining the relationship between achievement context and students’ goal orientations, or the cultural variations in such relationships. The purpose of the present study was, therefore, to explore the relationships among students’ goal orientations, their college GPAs, and their average scores in high school form 7. A total of 312 college students in Hong Kong participated in the present study. A survey was administered to collect information on students’ beliefs about their goal orientations, their college GPAs, and their average scores in high school form 7. The data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. The results showed that goal orientations have different associations with students’ college GPAs and their past performance in high school. Mastery goals and performance-approach goals were positively associated with students’ college GPAs, whereas performance-avoidance goals were negatively associated. However, both performance-approach and performance-avoidance goals were positively associated with average scores in high school, whereas mastery goals showed no association with high school performance. Cultural factors are discussed to clarify the findings.