Dimensions of Achievement-Motivation in Schoolwork and Sport

Joan Duda, J Nicholls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

914 Citations (Scopus)
948 Downloads (Pure)


Both sport and academic work play large roles in school life, yet there is little comparative evidence on the nature or generality of achievement motivation across these domains. In this study, beliefs about the causes of success in school and sport of 207 high school students were found to be related in a logical fashion to their personal goals. The ego-involved goal of superiority was associated with the belief that success requires high ability, whereas task orientation (the goal of gaining knowledge) was associated with beliefs that success requires interest, effort, and collaboration with peers. These goal-belief dimensions, or theories about success, cut across sport and schoolwork. However, little cross-domain generality was found for perceptions of ability and intrinsic satisfaction. Intrinsic satisfaction in sport primarily related to perceived ability in that setting. Task orientation, not perceived ability, was the major predictor of satisfaction in schoolwork.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)290-299
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1992


  • cross-situational consistency
  • personality
  • perception
  • education
  • feedback
  • debate


Dive into the research topics of 'Dimensions of Achievement-Motivation in Schoolwork and Sport'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this