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October 2021

Self-concept, causal attribution process and academic goals in children with and without learning disabilities

Author(s): Nunez, J. C., GonzalezPumariega, S., Alvarez, L., Roces, C., Garcia, M., Gonzalez, P., Cabanach, R. G., Valle, A.

Journal/Book: Psicothema. 2000; 12: Ildefonso S. Del Rio, 4-1 B, 33001 Oviedo, Spain. Colegio Oficial De Psicologos De Asturias. 548-556.

Abstract: Up to the present, the results of psychological research using samples of students with learning disabilities (LD) that are related to variables such as self-concept, motivation, or causal attribution processes are very often contradictory. Recent reviews suggest a two-fold explanation of this fact: on the one hand, the type of instrument used to assess these variables and, on the other, the comparison of results from groups of students with learning disabilities who receive different instructional treatment (ordinary classes, supplementary instruction outside the ordinary class, etc.). In this study, we attempt to analyze in-depth this confusing situation. Instruments for multidimensional assessment with contrasted reliability and validity were used. We focused on just one type of class (students who receive supplementary instruction outside the ordinary class) and we employed quite a large sample (259 students with LD and 243 without LD). The results of the study indicate that, compared to students without LD, those with LD have a more negative general self-image, especially in academic areas, although in social areas as well. They attribute their failures more frequently to internal causes than to external ones, and they feel less responsible for their successes, although in both cases, they consider effort an important factor in their academic results. They are also less motivated, both intrinsically and extrinsically.

Note: Article Gonzalez-Pienda JA, Univ Oviedo, Dept Psicol, Oviedo 33003, SPAIN


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