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The Development of Achievement Goals Throughout College
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin
  • Katherine S. Corker, Kenyon College
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Emerging adulthood, defined for many by the college years, is an active period of personality development; less is known about goal change during these years. We investigated stability and change in the 2 × 2 model of achievement goals over 4 years (N = 527). We evaluated rank-order stability and mean-level change, and testedgoal coupling hypotheses—the idea that early changes in goals predict later change in other goals—using multivariate latent difference score models. Achievement goals showed moderate rank-order stability over 4 years. Three of four goals demonstrated small normative declines, excepting performance approach goals. A change in mastery approach goals was associated with levels of the other three goals; these goals jointly acted to slow the decline of mastery goals. Trajectories for the other three goals were largely independent. Results suggest that goals are relatively stable individual differences during the college years.
Citation Information
Corker, K. S., Donnellan, M. B., & Bowles, R. P. (2013). The development of achievement goals throughout college: Modeling stability and change. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39, 1401-1417.