Social Psychology of Education

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 247–275 | Cite as

Values and learning approaches of students at an international university

  • Bobbie Matthews
  • Petra Lietz
  • I Gusti Ngurah Darmawan


This study indicates that values are statistically significant precursors to approaches to learning in a cohort of predominantly Bulgarian, German and Romanian students studying at a German university where the language of instruction in all subject areas is English. Values have been measured with the Portrait Values Questionnaire (Schwartz et al. 2001), and approaches to learning have been assessed by the Study Process Questionnaire (Biggs, 1987). The relationships between values and approaches to learning have been estimated by canonical correlation analysis. Results of the analysis suggest that values can be linked to learning approaches in a situation where students have left their home countries to undertake tertiary studies in a new social, cultural and educational environment. Four distinct pairings between values and learning approaches emerge whereby: (a) self-aggrandisement is linked to the achievement learning variable, (b) conservatism relates to the surface learning variable, (c) self-directedness is linked to the deep learning variable and (d) benevolent change is related to the learning strategies variable.


values learning approaches canonical correlation analysis international students learning motivations and strategies 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bobbie Matthews
    • 1
  • Petra Lietz
    • 2
  • I Gusti Ngurah Darmawan
    • 3
  1. 1.Flinders University, Institute of International EducationAdelaideAustralia
  2. 2.International University BremenBremanGermany
  3. 3.University of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia

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