آیا پنج عامل بزرگ روش های یادگیری را پیش بینی می کند؟
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی||تعداد کلمات|
|34175||2003||16 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید||7632 کلمه|
Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Personality and Individual Differences, Volume 34, Issue 8, June 2003, Pages 1431–1446
The present study examines if the big five personality traits can statistically predict learning approaches. Four hundred and twenty (286 female and 134 male) university students from Shanghai, PR China volunteered to participate in the study. The participants responded to the NEO Five-Factor Inventory and the Study Process Questionnaire. A cross-examination of the results from zero-order correlation, t-tests, multivariate analysis, and multiple-regression procedures indicated that the big five personality traits predict learning approaches to a certain degree. In this prediction, the conscientiousness and openness traits contributed the most in accounting for the differences in students' learning approaches. Conscientiousness is a good predictor for both the deep and the achieving approaches. Openness significantly predicted the deep approach to learning. Neuroticism is a good predictor for the surface approach to learning, whereas the agreeableness trait clearly predicted a learning approach that is not achieving. Finally, no distinct pattern was identified regarding the relationship of extraversion to any of the learning approaches.
One of the major achievements in psychology in the twentieth century is the finding of the big five personality traits. As Tokar (1995) has stated, the five-factor model is one of the most prominent and heuristic models of personality structure. Indeed, many scholars (e.g., Goldberg, 1993 and Taylor and MacDonald, 1999) have asserted that the big five personality traits model accounts for a large amount of the variability in personality. The five-factor model is the product of several decades of factor analytic research focusing on trait personality. According to Taylor and MacDonald (1999), the model was originally put forward by Galton (1884) and had its roots in the 'lexical hypothesis' (see also Goldberg, 1993). Early in 1981, Goldberg (also see Antonioni, 1998) contended that the five dimensions of rating personality could serve as a framework for many theories of personality at the time, including the views of Cattell (1957), Norman (1963), Eysenck (1970), and Guilford (1975). Earlier empirical work (e.g., Fiske, 1949 and Tupes and Christal, 1992) suggested that there existed five fairly strong and recurrent personality factors, these are surgency (termed as 'extraversion’ by many other scholars), agreeableness, dependability (including such dimensions as responsibility and conscientiousness), emotional stability, and culture. More recent empirical investigations have demonstrated a strong existence of the five personality domains (e.g., Digman, 1994 and Goldberg, 1990) that have been given slightly different names. These five personality dimensions are neuroticism, extraversion, openness to experience, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. Neuroticism (N) is the opposite of emotional stability. People high on the N scale tend to experience such negative feelings as emotional instability, embarrassment, guilt, pessimism, and low self-esteem. People scoring high on the Extraversion scale tend to be sociable and assertive. Extraverts also prefer to work with people. Openness (O) is characterized by such attributes as open-mindedness, active imagination, preference for variety, and independence of judgment. Also, people who are high on the O scale tend to be less conservative and traditional. People high on the Agreeableness scale are fundamentally altruistic, sympathetic, and readily helpful. Also, they value and respect other people's beliefs and conventions. Individuals who are high on the Conscientiousness scale are characterized as being purposeful, strong-willed, responsible, and trustworthy (see Costa & McCrae, 1992 for more details). The five-factor model has attracted the attention of many personality psychologists. The work of Costa & McCrae, 1985 and Costa & McCrae, 1992 is one of the most noteworthy. The most acclaimed work done by Costa and McCrae is their NEO Personality Inventory (1992). According to Taylor and MacDonald (1999), the NEO Personality Inventory has not only demonstrated exceptional psychometric properties, but also been successful in accommodating constructs already assessed by existing measures of personality traits. Among these measures are the Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (Briggs & Myers, 1988) and the Sixteen Personality Factor Questionnaire (Cattell, Eber, & Tatsuoka, 1970). Furthermore, the NEO-PI also has been proved to be associated with the Eysenck Personality Inventory (Eysenck & Eysenck, 1964), one of the most well-known assessment tools in the study of personality. Furthermore, the NEO-PI also has been successfully utilized in the investigation of the relationships of personality to other important variables such as creativity and divergent thinking (e.g., McCrae, 1987), achievement motivation (e.g., Busato, Prins, Elshout, & Hamaker, 1999), and career decision making (e.g., Shafer, 2000). A short version of the NEO Personality Inventory is the NEO Five-Factor Inventory (Costa & McCrae, 1992), which also has been proved to reliably assess the five personality dimensions (e.g., Courneya & Hellsten, 1998 and Saucier, 1998). The inventory has not only demonstrated good internal validity (e.g., Furnham, 1997 and Holden & Fekken, 1994), but also obtained good external validity with such inventories as Holland's (1994) Self-Directed Search (e.g., Fuller, et al., 1999, Tokar, 1995 and Tokar & Swanson, 1995), Eysenck, Wilson, and Jackson's Eysenck Personality Profiler (e.g., Muris, Schmidt, Merckelbach, & Rassin, 2000), Gough's (1997) Adjective Check List (Parker, 1997 and Parker & Stumpf, 1998), and the Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (e.g., Furnham, 1996a and Parker & Stumpf, 1998). A PsycInfo search (covering the period between 1992 and 2001) with the input key words being “Five Factor Inventory” resulted in hundreds of studies employing the NEO Five-Factor Inventory. These studies have been carried out in both academic and non-academic settings. For example, in academic settings, the relationships of the five personality traits have been investigated with such variables as intellectual satisfaction (e.g., Lieberman, Stroup, & Peel, 1998), teachers’ student control ideology (e.g., Rimmer, 1997), self-esteem (e.g., Parker, 1997), course type and teaching effectiveness (e.g., Mccaffrey, 1996), and with thinking styles (Zhang, 2002 and Zhang & Huang`, 2001). In non-academic settings, the relationships of the five personality traits have been examined with such variables as abilities (e.g., Austin, Deary, & Gibson, 1997), ego development (e.g., Morros, Pushkar, & Reis, 1998), moral reasoning (e.g., Dollinger & LaMartina, 1998), health problems and health behavior (Jerram & Coleman, 1999), and marital adjustment (e.g., Bouchard, Lussier, & Sabourin, 1999). Moreover, these studies have been carried out in many countries and the NEO Five-Factor Inventory has been translated and validated in several different languages such as Chinese, Czech, French, and Spanish. However, the role of the big five personality traits in student learning has not been given the attention that it deserves. Early in 1978, following the Lewinian model that behavior is the result of the interaction between the person and the environment, Biggs proposed a general model of student learning known as the 3P model. The first P stands for “presage” which consists of two components, one being student characteristics and the other being their learning environment. The interaction between student characteristics and learning environment leads to the second P, i.e., process—study process, to be specific. In turn, students’ study process affects the third P, i.e., product–learning outcome. One of the major factors related to student characteristics, according to Biggs, is students' personality. Biggs and his colleagues have tested the associations between students' study process and their personality characteristics (see Biggs, 1970; Biggs & Das, 1973). Students' study process is examined in terms of their approaches to their learning tasks. According to Biggs, 1978 and Biggs, 1992, there are three learning approaches: surface, which involves a reproduction of what is taught to meet the minimum requirements; deep, which involves a real understanding of what is learned; and achieving, which involves maximizing one's grades. The major inventory used to assess university students' learning approaches is the Study Process Questionnaire (SPQ, Biggs, 1987 and Biggs, 1992). The SPQ (details to be described in the method section) was originally designed to assess the learning approaches of Canadian and Australian students. In 1992, the SPQ was translated and back-translated between Chinese and English and the Hong Kong norms were established (Biggs, 1992). The psychometric properties of the SPQ scales have been summarized by a number of researchers, including Albaili, 1995 and Watkins, 1998, and Zhang and Sternberg (2000). These researchers reported that the SPQ is a reliable and valid instrument for assessing university students' learning approaches in practically all the cultures in which the SPQ has been used. Both internal and external validity data for the SPQ are well documented in the literature. The internal validity is obtained through examining the internal structure of the instrument. Whereas some studies supported Biggs's original argument that the SPQ assesses three approaches to learning (surface, deep, and achieving, e.g., Bolen, et al., 1994 and O'Neil, & Child, 1984), other studies supported a two-factor (surface and deep) model (e.g., Niles, 1995; Watkins & Dahlin, 1997). The two-factor model is consistent with the model proposed by Marton (1976) who used a phenomenographic method in studying students' learning approaches. The external validity is obtained through examining the SPQ against other instruments assumed to be based on similar constructs with the SPQ. It has been identified that the SPQ assesses similar constructs as Entwistle's (1981) Approaches to Studying Inventory (Wilson, Smart, & Watson, 1996) and Cantwell and Moore's (1996) Strategic Flexibility Questionnaire (Cantwell & Moore, 1998). As discussed earlier, Kember and Gow's (1990) factor analysis of the SPQ and of the Approaches to Studying Inventory yielded two factorial structures that are slightly different. Detailed descriptions of the nature of the SPQ can be found in Biggs's 1993 work. The Study Process Questionnaire also has been assessed regarding its heuristic values in educational settings in different parts of the world. Considerable work has been done to investigate the impact of student characteristics and learning context on the learning approaches that students take (e.g., Biggs, 1988, Sadler-Smith & Tsang, 1998 and Watkins & Hattie, 1981). Meanwhile, a great deal of work also has focused on the relationships between students' learning approaches and their academic achievement (e.g., Albaili, 1997; Biggs, 1988, Watkins, 1998 and Zhang, 2000a). Moreover, putting Biggs's notion of learning approaches within the context of the styles literature, Zhang (2000b) examined the associations between learning approaches and thinking styles as proposed in Sternberg, 1988 and Sternberg, 1997 theory of mental self-government. It was found that students who reported a deep approach to learning tended to employ thinking styles that are more creativity-generating and more complex and that students who reported a surface approach to learning tended to employ thinking styles that are norm-favoring and more simplistic. However, no research has been carried out that investigates the relationships of learning approaches (as measured by Biggs's Study Process Questionnaire) to big five personality traits. The present study intends to find out if the big five personality traits statistically predict students' learning approaches. If so, how and to what extent? In statistically examining the predictive validity of personality traits for learning approaches, the following two hypotheses were made. First, students who score higher on the neuroticism scale will report a surface approach to learning, but not a deep approach to learning. This hypothesis was made based on the characteristics of both the neuroticism personality trait and the surface and deep approaches to learning. Students who are emotionally unstable and who suffer from low self-esteem (high on neuroticism) should tend to avoid taking the risk of making mistakes. Therefore, they tend to feel more comfortable with dealing with learning tasks in which they are required to reproduce what they are taught. On the contrary, these students would not be comfortable in performing learning tasks that require them to have a deep understanding of the issue at hand. A deep understanding of an issue requires a great deal of investigations on their own and it demands much more trial-and-error experiences, which requires emotional stability and the willingness to make mistakes. Second, students who score higher on the openness, extraversion, and conscientiousness scales will report a deep approach to learning, but not a surface approach to learning. This hypothesis was also based on the characteristics of the personality traits and approaches to learning involved. Openness is clearly characterized by open-mindedness and active imagination. Extraversion is characterized by a preference for working with people; this preference can be regarded as a manifestation of open-mindedness. Conscientiousness characterizes individuals who are purposeful and strong-willed. To gain a true understanding of what is learned (deep approach), more of these personality traits just mentioned would contribute to a deep approach to learning. By contrast, lack of these personality traits would contribute to a surface approach to learning. No specific hypotheses were made about the relationships of the agreeableness scale to any of the three learning approaches since agreeableness seems to be a personality trait that could be useful for all three learning approaches. Similarly, no specific prediction was made on the relationships of the achieving approach to any of the five personality traits since people exhibiting predominantly any one of the five personality traits could be expected to use the achieving approach. For example, an individual who scores higher on the openness scale may take an achieving approach to learning because one needs to keep an open mind to collect the information needed to have better achievement. By the same token, an individual with a stronger neuroticism personality trait may take an achieving approach in the sense of gathering information in a hasty way so that he or she can reproduce what is taught.