Motives, attitudes and approaches to studying in distance education

Richardson, John T. E. (2007). Motives, attitudes and approaches to studying in distance education. Higher Education, 54(3) pp. 385–416.




This study investigated the relationships between demographic characteristics, motives and attitudes to studying, self-reported study behaviour and measures of outcome. Students taking courses by distance learning received a postal survey containing a short form of the Motivated Strategies and Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ) and the Revised Approaches to Studying Inventory (RASI). Path analysis was used to assess the causal relationships among 395 students’ age, gender and prior qualifications, their scores on the MSLQ and the RASI and their marks. Evidence was obtained for the causal efficacy of most of the paths among the main components. In particular, the causal link between variations in students’ motives and attitudes and variations in their study behaviour is bidirectional.

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