Date of Award

Spring 2011

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

First Advisor

Michael Middleton


This study explored stability in achievement goals and learning behaviors within a two-part learning project. Based on previous literature exploring stability in achievement goal orientation, it was hypothesized that students' goals and self-efficacy would show evidence of change within and between the two task sessions. This was tested through a series of self-report surveys. Literature on the relationship between achievement goals and reading strategies showed that mastery oriented students used more reading strategies than performance oriented students. This was tested by imposing a performance oriented measure on one half of the participants. Data was analyzed with quantitative methods. Findings from this study supported only the first hypothesis. Goals and self-efficacy showed evidence of instability within and between the two sessions. However, students in both the performance and mastery conditions used similar learning behaviors. This suggests learning projects are an important area on which motivation research should continue to focus.