کمال گرایی و اضطراب آمارها
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|32586||1999||15 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||6553 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 26, Issue 6, 1 June 1999, Pages 1089–1102
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between perfectionism and statistics anxiety, using a multivariate approach. Participants were 107 students enrolled in graduate-level research methodology courses. A canonical correlation analysis revealed that graduate students who hold unrealistic standards for significant others (i.e. other-oriented perfectionists) and those who maintain a perceived need to attain standards and expectations prescribed by significant others (i.e. socially-prescribed perfectionists) tend to have higher levels of statistics anxiety associated with interpretation anxiety, test and class anxiety, computational self-concept and fear of asking for help. The implications of these findings are discussed.
Perfectionism has been defined as the tendency to set and to pursue unrealistically high goals and standards for oneself across many domains (Hewitt and Flett, 1991a,Hewitt and Flett, 1991b). According to Hamachek, 1978, there are two types of perfectionists: normal perfectionists and neurotic perfectionists. Whereas normal perfectionists set and pursue high standards for themselves, allowing latitude for mistakes, neurotic perfectionists set and pursue high standards without permitting any leeway for error. Indeed, rarely do neurotic perfectionists feel that a task has been accomplished satisfactorily. Thus, although perfectionism in many cases is recognized as having a positive effect on adjustment or achievement (i.e. normal perfectionism), more often, it is viewed as a neurotic disposition (Weisinger and Lobsenz, 1981; Pacht, 1984; Flett et al., 1989). As such, for the purpose of this study, the term perfectionists hereafter will refer to neurotic perfectionists. Perfectionists often are preoccupied with flaws in their own performance (Hollender, 1965) and tend to exaggerate negative outcomes in a self-punitive manner (Burns, 1980; Barrow and Moore, 1983). For these individuals, even minor flaws in their performance are likely to result in the perception that their standards have not been met. This, in turn, increases the frequency with which failure is experienced and subsequently decreases levels of self-esteem (Hewitt and Dyck, 1986). Thus, perfectionists typically are driven more by a fear of failure than by a need for achievement (Hamachek, 1978; Burns, 1980; Pacht, 1984). According to Pacht, 1984, perfectionism is a prevalent and debilitating phenomenon. Indeed, research indicates that perfectionists are susceptible to negative affective states, including guilt, feelings of failure, low self-esteem and procrastination (Pacht, 1984; Solomon and Rothblum, 1984; Sorotzkin, 1985), and are vulnerable to more severe forms of psychopathology, such as depression, alcoholism, anorexia nervosa, erectile dysfunction, atypical facial pain, coronary heart disease and compulsive personality disorder (Burns and Beck, 1978; Hamachek, 1978; American Psychiatric Association, 1980; Burns, 1980; Quadland, 1980; Smith and Brehm, 1981; Garner et al., 1983; Solomon and Rothblum, 1984; Cooper et al., 1985; Hewitt and Dyck, 1986; Hewitt and Flett, 1990; Ferrari, 1992). According to Hewitt and Flett, 1991b, most research in the area of perfectionism has been limited by a tendency to define the construct from a unidimensional cognitive perspective. However, recently, perfectionism has been described as a multidimensional phenomenon, comprising both personal and social elements. Specifically, Hewitt and Flett, 1991ahave identified three dimensions of the perfectionistic personality style, namely: self-oriented, other-oriented and socially prescribed perfectionism. Apparently, self-oriented perfectionists tend to set and to pursue rigid and unrealistically high standards for themselves, and to undertake stringent self-appraisal in an attempt to attain perfectionism and to avoid failure (Hewitt and Flett, 1991a, Hewitt and Flett, 1991b). Other-oriented perfectionists hold unrealistic standards for significant others, place importance on other individuals being perfect and evaluate exactingly others behavior. Socially prescribed perfectionists believe that significant others (e.g. friends, family, professors and classmates) hold unrealistic standards for them, rigorously evaluate them, and pressure them to be perfect. All three types of perfectionistic individuals are inclined to attend selectively to and to overgeneralize failure. According to Hewitt and Flett, 1991a, the major difference among them is not the specific behavior pattern, but the object to whom the perfectionistic standard is directed (i.e. self-oriented vs. other-oriented) or to whom the perfectionistic standard is attributed (i.e. socially prescribed perfectionism). Unfortunately, much of the empirical research in the area of perfectionism in college populations has involved undergraduate students. That is, very few studies exist in which graduate students have been the focus of attention. Yet research suggests (Onwuegbuzie, 1997) that perfectionism is rife within this population. Indeed, it is likely that graduate students, in general, exhibit higher levels of perfectionism than do undergraduates. Thus, it would appear that studying perfectionism at the graduate level would provide important additional insight into the role of its various dimensions in educational settings. One area involving graduate students which recently has been investigated pertains to statistics anxiety. Statistics anxiety has been defined as an anxiety which occurs as a result of encountering statistics in any form and at any level (Onwuegbuzie et al., 1997), and which appears to involve a complex array of emotional reactions which have the propensity to debilitate learning. Many college students appear to experience high levels of statistics anxiety when confronted with statistical ideas, problems or issues, instructional situations or evaluative situations (Feinberg and Halperin, 1978; Zeidner, 1991; Onwuegbuzie and Seaman, 1994; Onwuegbuzie and Daley, 1996). Moreover, statistics anxiety has been found to be prevalent in both statistics courses (Onwuegbuzie and Seaman, 1994) and research methodology courses (Onwuegbuzie, 1997). Unfortunately, limited research exists on the characteristics of students with high levels of statistics anxiety (Auzmendi, 1991). Indeed, recently, Zimmer and Fuller (1996), in an extensive review of the literature, found no literature examining the relationship between personality and statistics. Nevertheless, it appears that statistics anxiety, like perfectionism, is a multidimensional construct (Cruise and Wilkins, 1980; Cruise et al., 1985; Onwuegbuzie et al., 1997). Specifically, using factor analysis, Cruise et al., 1985identified six components of statistics anxiety, namely: (1) worth of statistics, (2) interpretation anxiety, (3) test and class anxiety, (4) computational self-concept, (5) fear of asking for help and (6) fear of statistics teachers. According to these authors, worth of statistics refers to a students perception of the relevance of statistics. Interpretation anxiety is concerned with the anxiety experienced when a student is faced with making a decision from or interpreting statistical data. Test and class anxiety refers to the anxiety involved when taking a statistics class or test. Computational self-concept involves the anxiety experienced when attempting to solve mathematical problems, as well as the students perception of her/his ability to do mathematics. Fear of asking for help measures the anxiety experienced when asking a fellow student or professor for help in understanding the material covered in class or any type of statistical data, such as an article or a printout. Fear of statistics teachers is concerned with the students perception of the statistics instructor. Since many graduate students set unrealistic achievement goals while enrolled in statistics and research methodology courses (Onwuegbuzie et al., 1997), and since statistics anxiety has been found to be a psychological barrier to achievement in both statistics (e.g. Zeidner, 1991) and research methodology courses (Onwuegbuzie, 1997), it is possible that level of perfectionism is related to statistics anxiety. Indeed, fear of negative evaluation has been found to be an important element in both perfectionism (Endler and Okada, 1975) and statistics anxiety (Onwuegbuzie et al., 1997). Although Onwuegbuzie et al., 1997theorized that level of perfectionism is a dispositional antecedent of statistics anxiety; this theory, to date, has not been tested empirically. Thus, the purpose of the present study was to identify a combination of perfectionism dimensions which might be correlated with a combination of statistics anxiety dimensions, using multivariate analysis. Specifically, a canonical correlation analysis was utilized to examine this relationship, as it breaks down the association between two sets of variables and, as such, is appropriate for describing the number and nature of mutually independent relationships between them (Stevens, 1986). Using multivariate analysis in the area of perfectionism also is consistent with Frost et al. (1990)who specified that in order to understand the nature of perfectionism, one must examine the dimensions separately. This study is further justified by the fact that most graduate students are being required to enroll in at least one research methodology and/or statistics course as a part of their degree program (Onwuegbuzie, 1997), as well as the fact that most theses and dissertations involve statistical analyses.