Student Interest And Achievement: Developmental Issues Raised By A Case Study

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Published In

Development Of Achievement Motivation


This chapter discusses the developmental issues raised by a case study that explains student interest and achievement. This chapter suggests there are different types of interest and achievement relations, depending on the type of interest a student holds for subject content. This chapter suggests students can be supported to develop interest and work with subject content for which they initially have a less-developed interest. Interest refers to a psychological state of having an affective reaction to and focused attention for particular content and the relatively enduring predisposition to re-engage particular classes of objects, events, or ideas. Individual interest refers to a particular person and content relation, whereas intrinsic motivation more typically refers to a person's approach to a range of contents both in the moment and overtime. The case study “illustrates the relation between student interest and achievement,” "provides a basis for revisiting research on both interest and achievement motivation;” and “considers the possibilities and conditions of interest development.” This chapter concludes that depth analysis of one student focuses attention on the range of interest and achievement relations that characterize student's lives. The case study is profiled because the school he attends allows for differences in student interest and the possibility of changed interest for school content.

Published By

Academic Press


A. Wigfield and J.S. Eccles

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