Influence of Performance Attributions on Discounting and Devaluing Among High School Students: Does Academic Self-esteem Mediate?

Habil Otanga


Although considerable research on psychological disengagement exists, there is less focus on the influence of performance attributions. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the extent to which performance attributions influence psychological disengagement, measured as discounting and devaluing; and whether academic self-esteem mediates the relationship. Four hundred and forty nine students (206 males and 243 females) whose age ranged from 15-19 years (M = 17.20, SD = 1.09) from 12 urban high schools in Mombasa, Kenya participated in the study. Using a questionnaire, participants’ performance attributions, academic self-esteem, discounting and devaluing were measured. Data collected were analyzed using SPSS. Findings show significantly higher discounting than devaluing; significant indirect effects of external attributions on devaluing; and of stable and unstable attributions on discounting and devaluing through academic self-esteem. Practical implications of findings and directions for future research are discussed.

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