Research has shown that goal orientation has a direct relationship with academic achievement for students. This relationship varies for South African students from different backgrounds. This mini dissertation investigated the relationship between academic achievement and goal orientation but moreover explored the mediating variables at play in this relationship.
A quantitative correlational research study was employed with a sample size of 545 South African students ranging in age from 18 to 48 with a mean of 20.77 (SD = 2.94). Students completed an online survey, through Qualtrics. T tests yielded results suggesting that there was a significant difference (p = <.05) in the performance avoidance scores for historically advantaged students (M = 7.24, SD = 2.03) and historically disadvantaged students (M= 7.83, SD = 2.15), suggesting that historically disadvantaged students are more performance avoidant compared to historical advantaged students.
Two way between groups ANOVA showed that the historical advantaged students (M = 65.39, SD= 14.30) scored higher academically compared to the historical disadvantaged students (M=54.42, SD=15.17). Structural equation modelling (SEM) produced results showing that Goal achievement (GAQ) related positively, with a large direct, significance effect with Culture (R^2=0.0, ᵝ = 0.71, C.R.= 4.91, p<.001), proposing that students who are individualistic (or traditional) perform better academically.
Mini Dissertation (MA)--University of Pretoria, 2017.