The effect of approach and avoidance referents on academic outcomes: A test of competing predictions

Helen W. Sullivan, Keilah A. Worth, Austin S. Baldwin, Alexander J. Rothman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

In an academic setting, we tested competing predictions derived from two conceptual models about the effects of approach and avoidance referents (e.g., goals and role models) on student performance. One model suggests a main effect such that focusing on approach referents leads to better outcomes than focusing on avoidance referents, regardless of personality (e.g., A. J. Elliot & K. M. Sheldon, 1997). Another model suggests an interaction such that focusing on either approach or avoidance referents can lead to positive outcomes, but only when people are promotion focused or prevention focused, respectively (e.g., P. Lockwood, C. H. Jordan, & Z. Kunda, 2002). Findings supported the main effect model. The more prevention focused participants were, the more avoidance goals they generated, which led to poorer grades.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)157-164
Number of pages8
JournalMotivation and Emotion
Volume30
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2006

Bibliographical note

Copyright:
Copyright 2006 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Approach and avoidance motivation
  • Goals
  • Regulatory focus

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of approach and avoidance referents on academic outcomes: A test of competing predictions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this