Student Motivation and Independent Learning in Social Studies, English, and Math: The Impact of the Classroom Environment
Recent studies on self-learning have emphasized the importance of the cognitive and motivational elements of the classroom environment. Most of these studies have explored these elements by considering the potential for contextual variation. The current study examined inequalities in students' average assignment scores in social studies, math, and English education, as well as several non-cognitive variables, namely self-efficacy, exam anxiety, the use of cognitive strategies, the use of regulatory strategies, and academic success in the class. Employing an in-subject correlational design, students of mathematics, social sciences, and English were divided by gender. Multivariate regression was used to evaluate the relationships among performance, strategy utilization, and motivation indicators. The participants in the study were 545 students in the seventh and eighth grades of a secondary school (51 percent girls) who were asked to complete a self-report questionnaire. The results of the study showed that factors involving motivation and cognitive strategies varied by gender and subject, but not the use of regulatory approaches or academic achievement. However, according to the data, the relationships between these constructs appear to be relatively similar across the three subject areas studied. The importance of the findings to understanding the context-specificity of students' self-learning is highlighted.