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The effects of task-specific self-schemata on attributions for success and failure

Authors
Journal
Journal of Research in Personality
0092-6566
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
21
Issue
3
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/0092-6566(87)90018-3

Abstract

Abstract The purpose of the present study is to investigate whether task-specific self-schemata, i.e., cognitions that individuals hold about their ability at a particular task, determine the attributions made for success and failure. Sixty-nine subjects were categorized into three self-schema groups with a scale measuring their self-schemata about their ability in physical activities: strong-positive, aschematic, strong-negative. They engaged in a test of leg strength and were given false feedback indicating either success or failure at the task. The subjects then completed a questionnaire measuring their attributions for the task outcome. Results indicated that, as predicted, schematic subjects made attributions that were consistent with their self-schemata. In addition, sex differences emerged that coincided with previous research. The findings are discussed in terms of a self-schemata explanation for the attributional differences obtained.

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