European Journal of Psychology of Education

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 319–336 | Cite as

Cross-domain effects of achievement goals: social costs and benefits

  • Andrea Eugenia BarreraEmail author
  • Beate Schuster


In this research, we examined cross-domain effects of achievement goals. In two experimental studies, we manipulated achievement goals and assessed social reactions towards a hypothetical (study 1) and a real (study 2) target. Measurement of social reactions included prosocial behaviours such as helping, sharing and cooperating with others. Furthermore, we assessed the perception of social acceptance, social status and social exclusion towards the study targets. In study 1, manipulated mastery goals in a hypothetical target led to more prosocial behaviours and a higher ascribed social status as compared to targets described as endorsing performance goals. In addition, in study 2, real targets identified by their peers for showing a high degree of mastery goals were considered more attractive as cooperation partners than those endorsing performance goals. These effects of achievement goals did not generalize across all social reactions, however. To this respect, the most pronounced effect found in both studies was related to prosocial behaviours.


Achievement goals Social perception Social status Social acceptance Prosocial behaviour Social costs and benefits behaviour 



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Copyright information

© Instituto Superior de Psicologia Aplicada, Lisboa, Portugal and Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyLudwig-Maximilians-UniversityMunichGermany

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