Gender Differences in the Accuracy of Grade Expectancies and Evaluations

Abstract

Participants were 131 (69 women, 62 men)students in Introductory Psychology, Social Psychology,and Computer Science courses. Eighty-six percent of thesample was Caucasian. The goals of this study were to assess (a) how accurate students'preexamination expectancies and postexamination gradeevaluations are and whether gender differences in theaccuracy of expectancies and grade evaluations onexaminations exist, (b) whether expected grades predictpostexamination grade evaluations even with actualgrades controlled (self-consistency effect), and (c)whether students' grade expectations and evaluationsbecome more accurate with experience. Throughout thecourse of a semester, students estimated their gradesfor each of their examinations. Students overestimatedtheir grades at all points in the semester, although women in Introductory Psychology overestimatedtheir grades less than men did. Students' expectedgrades were a better predictor of their postexaminationgrade evaluations than were their actual grades. For Introductory Psychology students,expectancies and grade evaluations became more accurateas the semester progressed. The importance of accurateself-perceptions regarding academic performance isdiscussed.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

REFERENCES

  1. Alloy, L. B., & Abramson, L. Y. (1979). Judgment of contingency in depre ssed and nondepressed students: Sadder but wiser? Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 108, 441–485.

    Google Scholar 

  2. Alloy, L. B., & Abramson, L. Y. (1982). Learned helplessness, depression, and the illusion of control. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 42, 1114–1126.

    Google Scholar 

  3. Arnold, L., Willoughby, T. L., & Calkins, E. V. (1985). Self-evaluation in undergraduate medical education: A longitudinal perspective. Journal of Medical Education, 60, 21–28.

    Google Scholar 

  4. Beyer, S. (1990). Gender differences in the accuracy of se lf-evaluations of performance. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 59, 960–970.

    Google Scholar 

  5. Beyer, S. (1995). Maternal employme nt and children's academic achievement: Parenting style as mediating variable. Developmental Review, 15, 212–253.

    Google Scholar 

  6. Beyer, S. (1998). Gender differences in self-perception and negative recall biases. Sex Roles, 38, 103–133.

    Google Scholar 

  7. Beyer, S. (1998/1999 ). Gender difference s in causal attributions by college students of performance on course examinations. Current Psychology, 17, 346–358.

    Google Scholar 

  8. Beyer, S., & Bowden E. M. (1997). Gender difference s in se lf-perceptions: Converge nt e vidence from three measure s of accuracy and bias. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 23, 157–172.

    Google Scholar 

  9. Boggiano, A. K., Main, D. S., & Katz, P. A. (1988). Children's preference for challenge: The role of perceive d competence and control. Journal of Personality and Social Psycho logy, 54, 134–141.

    Google Scholar 

  10. Borkenau, P., & Liebler, A. (1993). Convergence of stranger ratings of personality and intelligence with se lf-ratings, partne r ratings, and me asured intelligence. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65, 546–553.

    Google Scholar 

  11. Brown, G. W., Andrews, B., Bifulco, A., & Veiel, H. (1990). Self-esteem and depression: I. Measurement issues and prediction of onset. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 25, 200–209.

    Google Scholar 

  12. Brown,G.W., Bifulco,A.,& Andrews, B. (1990). Self-esteem and depression: III. Aetiological issues. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 25, 235–243.

    Google Scholar 

  13. Buehler, R., Griin, D., & Ross, M. (1994). Exploring the ``planning fallacy”: Why people underestimate their task completion times. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 67, 366–381.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Crocker, J., Alloy, L. B.,& Kayne, N. T. (1988). Attributional style, depre ssion, and perceptions of consensus for events. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54, 840–846.

    Google Scholar 

  15. Cutrona, C. E., Cole, V., Colangelo, N., Assouline, S. G., & Russe ll, D. W. (1994). Perceived parental social support and academic achievement: An attachment theory perspective. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 66, 369–378.

    Google Scholar 

  16. Elliott, E. S., & Dweck, C. S. (1988). Goals: An approach to motivation and achievement. Jou rnal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54, 5–12.

    Google Scholar 

  17. Gabriel, M. T., Critelli, J. W., & Ee, J. S. (1994). Narcissistic illusions in self-evaluations of intelligence and attractiveness. Journal of Personality, 62, 143–155.

    Google Scholar 

  18. Gilovich, T., Kerr, M., & Medvec, V. H. (1993). Effect of temporal perspe ctive on subjective confidence. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 64, 552–560.

    Google Scholar 

  19. Glass, D. C., McKnight, D., & Valdimarsdottir, H. (1993). Depression, burnout, and perceptions of control in hospital nurses. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61, 147–155.

    Google Scholar 

  20. Gordon, M. J. (1991). A re view of the validity and accuracy of se lf-assessments in health profession training. Academic Medicine, 66, 762–769.

    Google Scholar 

  21. Grolnick, W. S., & Slowiaczek, M. L. (1994). Parents' involvement in children's schooling: A multidimensional conceptualization and motivational model. Child Development, 65, 237–252.

    Google Scholar 

  22. Hannover, B. (1991). Zur UnterrepraÈ sentanz von MaÈ dchen in Naturwissenschaften und Te chnik: Psychologische PraÈ diktoren der Fach-und Be rufswahl. Zeitschrift für Pädagogische Psychologie, 5, 169–186.

    Google Scholar 

  23. Harackiewicz, J. M.,& Elliot, A. J. (1993).Achievement goals and intrinsicmotivation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65, 904–915.

    Google Scholar 

  24. Harter, S., & Connell, J. P. (1984). A model of children's achievement and related selfperceptions of competence, control, and motivational orientation. In J. G. Nicholls (Ed.), Advances in motivation and achievement (Vol. 3, pp. 219–250). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.

    Google Scholar 

  25. Janoff-Bulman, R. (1989). The benefits of illusions, the threat of disillusionment, and the limitations of inaccuracy. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 8, 158–175.

    Google Scholar 

  26. John, O. P., & Robins, R. W. (1994). Accuracy and bias in se lf-perception: Individual difference s in se lf-enhancement and the role of narcissism. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 66, 206–219.

    Google Scholar 

  27. Kruglanski, A.W. (1989). The psychology of being ``right”: The problem of accuracy in social perception and cognition. Psychological Bulletin, 106, 395–409.

    Google Scholar 

  28. Kurman, J., & Sriram, N. (1997). Self-enhancement, generality of self-evaluation, and affectivity in Israel and Singapore. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 28, 421–441.

    Google Scholar 

  29. Lawton, C. A., Charleston, S. I., & Zieles, A. S. (1996). Individual-related and gender-related differences in indoor way finding. Environment and Behavior, 28, 204–219.

    Google Scholar 

  30. Lindeman, M., Sundvik, L., & Rouhiainen, P. (1995). Under-or overestimation of self. Person variables and self-assessment accuracy. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 10, 123–134.

    Google Scholar 

  31. Phillips, D. (1984). The illusion of incompetence among academicaly competent children. Child Development, 55, 2000–2016.

    Google Scholar 

  32. Phillips, D. (1987). Socialization of perceived academic competence among highly competent children. Child Development, 58, 1308–1320.

    Google Scholar 

  33. Powel, W. D., & Gray, R. (1995). Improving performance predictions by collaboration with peers and rewarding accuracy. Child Study Journal, 25, 141–154.

    Google Scholar 

  34. Radhakrishnan, P., Arrow, H., & Sniezek, J. A. (1996). Hoping, performing, learning, and predicting: Change s in the accuracy of self-evaluations of performance. Human Performance, 9, 23–49.

    Google Scholar 

  35. Reilly, J., & Mulhern, G. (1995). Gender differences in self-estimated IQ: The need for care in interpreting group data. Personality and Individual Differences, 18, 189–192.

    Google Scholar 

  36. Roberts, T.-A., & Nolen-Hoeksema, S. (1989). Sex differences in reactions to evaluative feedback. Sex Roles, 21, 725–747.

    Google Scholar 

  37. Shepperd, J. A., Ouellette, J. A., & Fernandez, J. K. (1996). Abandoning unrealistic optimism: Performance e stimate s and the temporal proximity of self-relevant feedback. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 70, 844–855.

    Google Scholar 

  38. Snyder, C. R. (1989). Reality negotiation: From excuse s to hope and beyond. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 8, 130–157.

    Google Scholar 

  39. Taylor, K. M., & Shepperd, J. A. (1998). Bracing for the worst: Severity, testing, and feedback timing as mode rators of the optimistic bias. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 24, 915–926.

    Google Scholar 

  40. Taylor, S. E., & Armor, D. A. (1996). Positive illusions and coping with adversity. Journal of Personality, 64, 873–898.

    Google Scholar 

  41. Taylor, S. E.,& Brown, J.D. (1988). Illusion and well-being:A social-psychological perspective on mental health. Psychological Bulletin, 103, 193–210.

    Google Scholar 

  42. Taylor, S. E., & Brown, J. D. (1994). Positive illusions and well-being re visited: Separating fact from fiction. Psychological Bulletin, 116, 21–27.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Beyer, S. Gender Differences in the Accuracy of Grade Expectancies and Evaluations. Sex Roles 41, 279–296 (1999). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1018810430105

Download citation

Keywords

  • Gender Difference
  • Social Psychology
  • Good Predictor
  • Academic Performance
  • Introductory Psychology