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Why do girls and women progressively opt out of maths‐related study and careers? This study aims to examine motivations influencing female adolescents' choices for maths…
Why do girls and women progressively opt out of maths‐related study and careers? This study aims to examine motivations influencing female adolescents' choices for maths participation during high school, which has implications for their long‐term careers.
Two longitudinal samples were included from different contexts – one from Sydney, Australia (N=459), and the other from Southeastern Michigan, USA (N=266). Both samples involved adolescents from upper middle‐class backgrounds, from coeducational government schools, and data in both settings were collected in the mid 1990s. Australian data spanned a three‐year period through grades 9 to 11; while the US sample spanned a five‐year period, with data from grades 8, 10, 11, and 12. The Expectancy‐Value model of Eccles (Parsons) et al., framed structural equation modelling analyses for the influences of maths ability‐related beliefs and values on boys' and girls' subsequent choices for senior high maths participation.
Boys selected higher levels of maths than girls in the Australian setting, although not in the US sample. There was no support for gendered maths achievement as a basis for gendered maths participation. Interest in and liking for maths were the strongest influence on the Australian adolescents' choices for maths participation, with ability beliefs also influencing choices over and above prior mathematical achievement. Ability‐related beliefs and different kinds of values also predicted adolescents' choices in the US sample, more strongly for girls than boys.
Interpretations and implications focus on ways to increase girls' and women's retention in the leaky maths pipeline.
Longitudinal data allow one to determine the extent to which different kinds of motivations predict boys' and girls' mathematical course‐taking through senior high school across Australian and US samples. This has implications for their long‐term careers.
The purpose of this paper is to elaborate the picture of the motivators for information seeking by comparing two cognitive psychological approaches to motivation…
The purpose of this paper is to elaborate the picture of the motivators for information seeking by comparing two cognitive psychological approaches to motivation: self-determination theory (SDT) and expectancy-value theories (EVTs).
The study draws on the conceptual analysis of 31 key investigations characterizing the nature of the above theories. Their potential is examined in light of an illustrative example of seeking information about job opportunities.
SDT approaches motivation by examining the degree to which one can make volitional choices while meeting the needs of autonomy and competence. Information-seeking behaviour is most volitional when it is driven by intrinsic motivation, while such behaviours driven by extrinsic motivation and amotivation are less volitional. Modern EVTs approach the motivators for information seeking by examining the individual’s beliefs related to intrinsic enjoyment, attainment value, utility value and relative cost of information seeking. Both theories provide useful alternatives to traditional concepts such as information need in the study of the motivators for information seeking.
As the study focusses on two cognitive psychological theories, the findings cannot be generalised to all represent all categories relevant to the characterisation of triggers and drivers of information seeking.
Drawing on the comparison of two cognitive psychological theories, the study goes beyond the traditional research approaches of information behaviour research confined to the analysis of information needs.