This study addressed notions derived from a model by Tesser, Campbell, and Smith (1984) of self-concept and how it is influenced by social relationships. We were interested in whether the self-evaluation maintenance model (SEM) would allow us to investigate more directly the value component in expectancy-value models of achievement motivation. Using distinctions often made about different motivational orientations, we discovered a three-way interaction between level of mastery orientation (high or low), relevance of math (high or low), and target of rating (self or 7th grade friend) on students' perception of ability in math. Thus, the SEM model was supported but only for students reporting a low mastery orientation. For them, those who reported math as highly relevant estimated their own ability as significantly higher than their friend's, whereas those reporting math as less relevant showed no difference in estimates of ability between self or friend. For high mastery oriented students, no differences were found.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology