A study of self-concept of ability, school achievement and cognitive dissonance in junior high school students
Martin, James G. (James Gilbert), 1926-1999||Sharp, Emmit F.||Burchard, Waldo W.
M.A. (Master of Arts)
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Problem. The problem in this study concerning self-concept of ability, school achievement, and cognitive dissonance in junior high school students was investigated in three steps. First was a partial replication of a study by Dr. Wilbur B. Brookover at Michigan State University. Step two was the attempt to develop scales to measure perceived level of academic effort and level of academic effort aspiration. The difference between these two scale scores was called the degree of dissonance# The last step was an effort to discover the role of cognitive dissonance in the adjustment of self-concept of ability to school achievement. Hypotheses in step one were: 1. Among students with similar abilities scores on a self-concept scale will be positively correlated with achievement scores. 2. The mean of self-concept scores will be significantly higher for seventh grade girls than for seventh grade boys. 3. Socio-economic status is positively related to the students' self-concept of ability. 4. Self-concept of ability is positively related to score# on an importance of grades scale. 5. Students who aspire to go to college have a significantly higher mean self-concept than those students with lower educational aspirations. 6. Students who expect to go to college have a significantly higher mm self-concept than those students with lower educational expectations. In step three the hypotheses were: 7. There is a positive relationship between socio-economic status and degree of dissonance. 8. There is a positive relationship between degree of dissonance and importance of grades. 9. The mean of dissonance scores will be higher for those who.aspire to go to college than for those with lower educational aspirations. 10. The mean of dissonance scores will he higher for those who expect to go to college than for those with lower educational expectations. 11. There is a positive relationship between grade point average and the degree of dissonance. Methods and procedures. The Pearsonian product moment correlation coefficient and the critical ratio of the difference between means to the standard error of the difference between means were used to test hypotheses in steps one and three. In step two the Likert method of item analysis and decisions of a panel of judges were used as tests of validity in development of the two scales. Summary of findings. In step one hypothesis two failed to achieve significance at the .05 level. All other hypotheses in the partial replication were confirmed at the .05 level of significance or better. Nineteen items were validated for each of the two scales developed in step two. These items constituted the refined scales used to determine the degree of dissonance for the last step. None of the hypotheses in step three was confirmed. Study results can be applied to the study sample only. Further correlating of the two scales developed in this study with other variables may prove fruitful at another time.
Evenstad, Sonia Lynn, "A study of self-concept of ability, school achievement and cognitive dissonance in junior high school students" (1966). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 675.
vii, 62 pages
Northern Illinois University
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Includes bibliographical references.