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dc.contributor.advisorLauermann, Fani-
dc.contributor.authorBenden, Daria Katharina-
dc.description.abstractStudents’ math-related expectancies of success and subjective task values are important predictors of their educational and career choices, such as students’ decisions to persist in or drop out of math-intensive study programs in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Introductory math courses are often a gatekeeper to further engagement and success in STEM fields because students often experience low levels of motivation and achievement in such courses. However, little is known about how students’ expectancies of success and subjective task values change in math gatekeeper courses shortly after the transition to postsecondary education, and to what extent potential declines in these motivational beliefs may contribute to high dropout rates during this critical time period. Building on Eccles and colleagues’ situated expectancy-value theory (Eccles & Wigfield, 2020), the present dissertation thus examined (a) how students’ expectancies of success and task values changed in the first semester of math-intensive study programs, (b) whether the developmental processes of students’ expectancies and task values across the semester differed as a function of students’ personal characteristics (e.g., gender, prior achievement, socioeconomic status), and (c) whether potential motivational declines predicted later academic struggles. The key finding of the present work is that students experienced a motivational shock shortly after the transition to postsecondary education in math-intensive STEM fields, which coincided with the students’ first performance feedback on mandatory math worksheets. Analyses of within-person reciprocal links further suggest that negative deviations in students’ expectancy of being successful in their math course from their personal baseline significantly predicted within-person declines in their interest in and perceived usefulness of the coursework half a semester later. Importantly, the motivational shock significantly predicted students’ academic achievement, study program satisfaction, and course dropout towards the end of the first semester in STEM programs. Female students and students with comparatively lower achievement in high school were at risk of more negative motivational trajectories. Taken together, these results underscore the importance of short-term motivational declines as early warning signs of low academic achievement and dropout tendencies in math-intensive STEM programs. Motivational interventions are thus needed in the very early stages of students’ postsecondary education in math-intensive STEM fields in order to increase students’ study success and retention in STEM fields.en
dc.subjectMotivational changesen
dc.subjectSituated expectancy-value theoryen
dc.subjectAcademic achievementen
dc.subjectDropout tendenciesen
dc.titleShort-term developmental processes of students’ expectancies and task values in math-intensive study programs and links to academic success and dropout tendenciesen
dc.contributor.refereeMcElvany, Nele-
dcterms.accessRightsopen access-
Appears in Collections:Institut für Schulentwicklungsforschung

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