Measuring causal attibutions for success and failure

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Abstract

A great deal of research has been generated by the B. Weiner et al (1971) attribution model of achievement behavior. Although generally supportive of the model, the literature is marred by a lack of concern with the reliability and validity of the measurements used. In the present study, causal attributions for a manipulated success-failure event were collected from 252 college students on 5 measuring instruments. Results indicate that the open-ended response measure showed poorer interest correlation validity than did the structured measures. Rating scales showed a better fit to attribution conceptualizations than did the percentage method. Overall, scale measures seem to be the method of choice, although possible uses for open-ended measures of attributions are suggested. (24 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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