Abstract The effects of age, skill versus nonskill instructions, and the personality variable locus of control (LC) upon interrupted and completed task recall and repetition choice were assessed. Significant age × LC and instructions × LC interactions were found for repetition choice measures. These findings were interpreted to mean that competence motivation both increases with age and is conditioned by personality factors which are independent of age. A significant grade × instructions interaction was found for total recall, while LC was related to differential recall of completed and incompleted tasks. It was found that task recall and task repetition choice were independent of one another. The theoretical and methodological implications of these latter results were discussed.