The role of self- and social directed goals in a problem-based, collaborative learning context

Tempelaar, Dirk T.; Wosnitza, Marold; Volet, Simone; Rienties, Bart; Giesbers, Bas and Gijselaers, Wim H. (2013). The role of self- and social directed goals in a problem-based, collaborative learning context. Higher Education, 66(2) pp. 253–267.



Students’ learning goals demonstrate much stronger variety than traditional goal orientation models for classroom learning assume, especially when the educational context allows so. In this empirical study we will investigate the richness of students’ goal orientation in a collaborative learning context. We do so with the help of a goal setting framework that is based on a two-facet approach distinguishing multiple contents (performance, learning, well-being) and goal directions (varying degrees of self vs social direction). To investigate the role of different goal constellations, goal setting and learning performance data of first year students (n = 2,636) in a problem-based, collaborative learning program, and evaluation data of problem-based tutorial groups (#groups = 206) are combined into a multilevel model. Each tutorial group functions in two different educational settings: one directed at open-ended, group problems, the other at closed, individual problems. Educational context appears indeed to have a crucial role in the relationship between students’ goal setting at the one side, and students’ performance and group functioning on the other side.

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  • Item ORO ID
  • 39485
  • Item Type
  • Journal Item
  • ISSN
  • 1573-174X
  • Keywords
  • motivation for learning; goal orientation; collaborative learning; social goals
  • Academic Unit or School
  • Institute of Educational Technology (IET)
  • Copyright Holders
  • © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
  • Depositing User
  • Bart Rienties