Authors: Gulseren Sekreter1 & Hamdi Serin2
2 Department of Mathematics, Faculty of Education, Ishik University, Erbil, Iraq
Abstract: In learning mathematics, students are naturally motivated to protect their self-worth by maintaining a belief that they are competent in this area. However, there is an important question which educators have to answer: “Why do students often confuse ability with worth?” The most important reason is that in our society students are widely considered to be worthy according to their ability to achieve in the given tasks in mathematics. Irrespective the contributions of the Multiple Intelligence Theory of intelligence in education, unfortunately mathematics is still regarded as predicting students’ overall ability to learn. Educators should realize that the need in order to protect self-worth arises primarily from fear of failure. Therefore, if this fear of failure is strong, some students will not try and gradually they will produce failure- avoiding strategies to avoid certain tasks in order not to look bad or receive negative assessments from others to protect his/her self-worth. It is important to make sure that the performance goals do not promote failure-avoidance (performance-avoidance-oriented) behavior, such as avoiding unfavorable judgments of capabilities and looking incompetent when the student encounters greater challenges. The main purpose of this qualitative study, therefore, is to explore students’ achievement goal motivation, their self-worth and how these motivational factors impact their learning goals in mathematics. This study hypothesizes that self- worth protection in math has also been considered from a performance-avoidance goal viewpoint.This study emphasizes that educators, who consider true self-worth as the student’s inherent value, should avoid comparing their students’ ability, capability relative to others as well as students’ academic performance and outcomes with others in class context.
Keywords: Mastery Goal, Performance Approach Goal, Performance Avoidance Goal, Students’ Sense of Self-Worth
Atkinson, J. W. (1957). Motivational determinants of risk-taking behavior. Psychology Review, 64, 359- 372.
Beery, R. (1975). Fear of faliure in the student experience. Personal and Guidance Journal, 54, 191-203.
Covington, M.V. (2000). Goal theory, motivation, and school achievement: An integrative review. Annual Review Psychology, 51, 171-200.
Covington, M.V. (1998). The Will to Learn: A Guide for Motivating Young People. New York: Canbridce University Press.
Covington, M.V. (1992). Making the Grade: A Self-Worth Perspective on Motivation and School Reform. New York: Cambridge Univ.Press.
Covington, M.N. (1984). The self-worth theory of achievement motivation: Findings and implications. The Elementary School Journal, 85(1), p. 5-20.
Covington, M.V., & Beery, R. (1976). Self-Worth and School Learning. New York: Holt, Rienhard, Winston.
Covington, M.V. & Mueller, K.J. (2001). Intrinsic versus extrinsic motivation: An approach/avoidance reformulation. In
Covindton, M.V. & Elliot, A.J. Special Issue of Educational Psychology Review, p. 111-130. New York: Plenum Press.
Covington, M.V., & Omelich, C.E. (1985). Ability and effort valuation among failure-avoiding and failure accepting students. Journal of Educational Psychology, 77, 446-459.
Covington, M.V., & Omelich, C. L. (1979). Effort: The double-edged sword in school achievement. Journal of Educational Psychololy, 71, p. 169-82.
Crocker, J. (2002). The Costs of seeking self-esteem. Journal of Social Issues, 58, 597-615.
Eccles, J.S., & Wigfield, A. (2002). Motivational beliefs, values, and goals. Annual Review Psychology, 53, p. 32-109.
International Journal of Social Sciences & Educational Studies
ISSN 2520-0968 (Online), ISSN 2409-1294 (Print), December 2017, Vol.4, No.3