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See detailThe generalized internal/external frame of reference model with academic self-concepts, interests, and anxieties in students from different language backgrounds
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Arens, A. Katrin; Greiff, Samuel UL et al

in Contemporary Educational Psychology (2022)

Student motivation and affect play an important role in successful language learning. To investigate the formation of language learning motivation and affect, this study extended the generalized internal ... [more ▼]

Student motivation and affect play an important role in successful language learning. To investigate the formation of language learning motivation and affect, this study extended the generalized internal/external frame of reference (GI/E) model framework to multiple languages (German and French, along with math) and multiple motivational-affective outcomes (academic self-concept, interest, and anxiety). We examined whether social and dimensional comparisons play similar roles in the formation of students’ self-concepts, interests, and anxieties concerning different languages and whether dimensional comparisons result in contrast or assimilation effects. Moreover, we tested the generalizability of the GI/E model assumptions across students with different language backgrounds. Using a data set comprising virtually all ninth-grade students (N=6275; 48.0% female) from Luxembourg’s multilingual educational system, our findings indicated (1) clear contrast effects in the formation of self-concept and interest in math, German, and French, and (2) a combination of contrast, assimilation, and no effects in the formation of anxiety in math, German, and French. Using a subsample of 5837 students with valid language information (48.0% female), invariance tests demonstrated that the GI/E achievement–outcome relations operated equivalently across students from different home language backgrounds. [less ▲]

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See detailAssessing collaborative problem-solving skills among elementary school students
Rojas, Matias; Nussbaum, Miguel; Chiuminatto, Pablo et al

in Computers and Education (2021), 175

As 21st century skills have become increasingly important, Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) is now considered essential in almost all areas of life. Different theoretical frameworks and assessment ... [more ▼]

As 21st century skills have become increasingly important, Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS) is now considered essential in almost all areas of life. Different theoretical frameworks and assessment instruments have emerged for measuring this skill. However, more applied studies on its implementation and evaluation in real-life educational settings are required. In this sense, pre-post experimental designs are essential for identifying new methods for developing collaborative problem-solving skills. To do so, equivalent tests are needed to facilitate consistent score interpretations and reduce the practice effect. In the present study, a Design-Based Research approach is used to design and validate an assessment tool with two equivalent forms based on a framework proposed by the OECD and applied to a collaborative activity. A total of 719 students aged between 10 and 13 years old participated in the different stages of the study. The results show that the proposed instrument effectively measures the problem-solving dimension of collaborative problem-solving skills among students of this age. Moreover, the results from the test were equivalent for both forms and across genders. Finally, there were no significant differences when assessing collaborative problem-solving in human-human groups versus human-agent groups using the proposed instrument. For future work, we recommend including other data sources than just text-based conversations. This would allow us to capture the rich social interactions present in this type of activity. Future work should also consider exploring the extent to which skills could be trained. This could be done in an experimental design assessed using the equivalent forms of the proposed instrument as a pre- and post-test. Doing so would provide a more accurate measure of students’ collaborative skills. [less ▲]

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See detailDeveloping and Validating a Short-Form Questionnaire for the Assessment of Seven Facets of Conscientiousness in Large-Scale Assessments
Franzen, Patrick UL; Arens, A. Katrin; Greiff, Samuel UL et al

in Journal of Personality Assessment (2021)

Conscientiousness is the most important personality predictor of academic achievement. It consists of several lower order facets with differential relations to academic achievement. There is currently no ... [more ▼]

Conscientiousness is the most important personality predictor of academic achievement. It consists of several lower order facets with differential relations to academic achievement. There is currently no short instrument assessing facets of conscientiousness in the educational context. Therefore, in the present multi-study report, we develop and validate a short-form questionnaire for the assessment of seven Conscientiousness facets, namely Industriousness, Perfectionism, Tidiness, Procrastination Refrainment, Control, Caution, and Task Planning. To this end, we examined multiple representative samples totaling N = 14,604 Grade 9 and 10 students from Luxembourg. The questionnaire was developed by adapting and shortening an existing scale using an exhaustive search algorithm. The algorithm was specified to select the best item combination based on model fit, reliability, and measurement invariance across the German and French language versions. The resulting instrument showed the expected factorial structure. The relations of the facets with personality constructs and academic achievement were in line with theoretical assumptions. Reliability was acceptable for all facets. Measurement invariance across language versions, gender, immigration status and cohort was established. We conclude that the presented questionnaire provides a short measurement of seven facets of Conscientiousness with valid and reliable scores. [less ▲]

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See detailThe development and validation of a short conscientiousness questionnaire for large-scale educational assessment
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Franzen, Patrick UL; Arens, A. Katrin et al

Scientific Conference (2020, July)

Conscientiousness and its subfacets are related to multiple learning-related outcomes. MacCann, Duckworth and Roberts (2009) developed a questionnaire measuring seven subfacets of conscientiousness with ... [more ▼]

Conscientiousness and its subfacets are related to multiple learning-related outcomes. MacCann, Duckworth and Roberts (2009) developed a questionnaire measuring seven subfacets of conscientiousness with 59 items. However, the resources required to complete such long scales often renders it unsuitable for large-scale educational assessment. Consequently, an economic and psychometrically sound conscientiousness questionnaire that is specifically customized for this context is needed. We developed and validated a short version of the MacCann et al. (2009) questionnaire. In study 1, French and German adaptations of the questionnaire were administered to a representative dataset comprising all ninth-graders in Luxembourg (N1=6325, Cohort 2017). Using an exhaustive search algorithm, we identified the optimal combination of four items for each subfacet by simultaneously considering three criteria: goodness of fit, factor saturation, and scalar measurement invariance across the German and French versions. In study 2, we validated our short 28-item questionnaire on a second, independent sample comprising 6,279 Luxembourgish ninth-graders (Cohort 2018). A 7-factor model assuming separate factors for each subfacet obtained acceptable fit (CFI=.93, RMSEA=.04, SRMR=.06). The criterion validity for each subfacet was tested by examining the relation to standardized achievement tests (SATs). In study 3, drawing on a dataset of 275 tenth-graders (linked longitudinally with the ninth-grade data from study 1), evidence of predictive validity (i.e., school grades) was examined. The subfacets of industriousness, caution and perfectionism showed the strongest relations with both SATs (study 2) and school grades (study 3). Our study delivered a short, valid and reliable questionnaire for the assessment of seven conscientiousness facets in the educational context. The scale is invariant across the German and French language versions and its brevity makes it suitable for large-scale educational assessment. [less ▲]

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See detailDoes Conscientiousness Matter for Academic Success? Considering Different Facets of Conscientiousness and Different Educational Outcomes
Franzen, Patrick UL; van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Arens, A. Katrin et al

Poster (2020, April)

Conscientiousness is the strongest BIG-5 predictor of academic success. Both conscientiousness and academic success are broad concepts, consisting of multiple lower level facets. Conscientiousness facets ... [more ▼]

Conscientiousness is the strongest BIG-5 predictor of academic success. Both conscientiousness and academic success are broad concepts, consisting of multiple lower level facets. Conscientiousness facets might display differential relations to different indicators of academic success. To investigate these relations, conscientiousness facets need to be measured in an economic and valid way. We conducted two studies, validating a short conscientiousness scale measuring seven facets of conscientiousness (Industriousness, Task Planning, Perfectionism, Procrastination Refrainment, Tidiness, Control, Cautiousness), and testing the relations of these facets with GPA, test scores, school satisfaction, and engagement. The results supported the validity of the scale. Industriousness, Perfectionism, and Cautiousness revealed the highest relations to academic outcomes. GPA and test scores showed differential associations with the different conscientiousness facets. [less ▲]

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See detailSelf-concept, interest, and achievement within and across math and verbal domains in first- and third-graders
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Arens, A. Katrin; Keller, Ulrich UL et al

Scientific Conference (2020, April)

The generalized internal/external frame-of-reference (G)I/E model explains the formation of domain-specific motivational-affective constructs through social and dimensional comparisons. We examined the ... [more ▼]

The generalized internal/external frame-of-reference (G)I/E model explains the formation of domain-specific motivational-affective constructs through social and dimensional comparisons. We examined the associations between verbal and math achievement and corresponding domain-specific academic self-concepts (ASCs) and interests for first-graders and third-graders (N=21,192). Positive achievement-self-concept and achievement-interest relations were found within matching-domains in both grades, while negative cross-domains achievement-self-concept and achievement-interest relations were only found for third-graders. These findings suggest that while the formation of domain-specific ASCs and interests seem to rely on social and dimensional comparisons for third-graders, only social comparisons seem to be in operation for first-graders. Gender and cohort invariance was established in both grade levels. Findings are discussed within the framework of ASC differentiation and dimensional comparison theory. [less ▲]

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See detailIntroducing new open science practices at EJPA. European Journal of Psychological Assessment
Greiff, Samuel UL; van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Mund, M et al

in European Journal of Psychological Assessment (2020), 36

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See detailDimensional and Social Comparison Effects on Domain-Specific Academic Self-Concepts and Interests with First- and Third-Grade Students
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Arens, Katrin; Keller, Ulrich UL et al

Scientific Conference (2019, November 06)

Academic self-concepts (ASCs) are self-perceptions of one’s own academic abilities. The internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model (Marsh, 1986) explains the formation of domain-specific ASCs ... [more ▼]

Academic self-concepts (ASCs) are self-perceptions of one’s own academic abilities. The internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model (Marsh, 1986) explains the formation of domain-specific ASCs through a combination of social (i.e. comparing one’s achievement in one domain with the achievement of others in the same domain) and dimensional (i.e. comparing one’s achievement in one domain with one’s achievement in another domain) comparisons. This results into positive achievement-self-concept relations within the math and verbal domains, but into negative achievement-self-concept relations across these domains. The generalized internal/external frame of reference (GI/E) model (Möller, Müller-Kalthoff, Helm, Nagy, & Marsh, 2015) extends the I/E model to the formation of other domain-specific academic self-beliefs such as interest. Research on the validity of the (G)I/E model for elementary school children is limited, especially for first-graders. This study examined the associations between verbal and math achievement and corresponding domain-specific self-concepts and interests for first-graders and third-graders. Two fully representative Luxembourgish first-grader cohorts and two fully representative third-graders cohorts (N=21,192) were used. The analyses were based on structural equation modeling. The findings fully supported the (G)I/E model for third-graders: Achievement was positively related to self-concept and interest within matching domains. Negative relations were found between achievement and self-concept and between achievement and interest across domains. For first-graders, achievement was positively related to self-concept and interest within matching domains. However, the majority of cross-domain relations were non-significant, except for the negative path between math achievement and verbal interest. Hence, while the formation of domain-specific ASCs and interests seem to rely on social and dimensional comparisons for third-graders, only social comparisons seem to be in operation for first-graders. Gender and cohort invariance was established for both grade levels. The findings are discussed within the framework of ASC differentiation and dimensional comparison theory applied to elementary school students. [less ▲]

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See detailAssimilation and Contrast Effects of Dimensional Comparisons in Self-Concepts, Interests & Anxieties
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Arens, A. Katrin; Greiff, Samuel UL et al

Scientific Conference (2019, August 16)

Research on the internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model has frequently found contrast effects of dimensional comparisons (i.e. a negative relationship between achievement and self-concept across ... [more ▼]

Research on the internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model has frequently found contrast effects of dimensional comparisons (i.e. a negative relationship between achievement and self-concept across domains) between math and verbal domains. The generalised internal/external frame of reference (GI/E) model extends the I/E model to multiple domains including multiple languages and to other academic self-beliefs and attitudes. When considering multiple languages, achievement-self-concept relations across languages have been found to be either negative (i.e. contrast effect), positive (i.e. assimilation effect), or non-significant. The present study contributes to the ongoing debate concerning the effect of dimensional comparisons among languages by (1) examining dimensional comparisons across two languages and (2) extending the examination to interest and anxiety as outcome variables beyond self-concept. We analysed domain-specific self-concepts, interest, anxieties, and achievement regarding French, German and math in a representative sample (N=5,789) of Luxembourgish ninth-graders. Findings indicated (1) clear contrast effects in the formation of self-concept and interest in German, French and math, and (2) a combination of contrast, assimilation and/or no effects in the formation of anxiety in math, German, and French. With regard to the latter, contrast effects were found for achievement-anxiety paths from German to French, French to German, and French to math. Achievement-anxiety paths from math to French and German to math were non-significant, while the path from math achievement to German anxiety showed a small, yet significant assimilation effect. Results are contextualised within the multilingual Luxembourgish educational system and implications for research on dimensional comparisons are discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailDeveloping and validating a short-form questionnaire for the assessment of seven conscientiousness facets in educational large-scale assessments
Franzen, Patrick UL; van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Greiff, Samuel UL et al

Scientific Conference (2018, November 09)

The influence of personality on academic outcomes has been demonstrated consistently in previous research. In particular, conscientiousness and its lower order facets generally show the strongest ... [more ▼]

The influence of personality on academic outcomes has been demonstrated consistently in previous research. In particular, conscientiousness and its lower order facets generally show the strongest predictive validity for academic success. MacCann et al. (2009) constructed a 68-item questionnaire for the comprehensive assessment of different conscientiousness facets in secondary education. However, such questionnaires are arguably too long for the use in large-scale educational assessments. Investigating the influence of conscientiousness facets within large-scale educational assessments is, nevertheless, crucial for advancing our knowledge of the differential influence of facets on various academic outcomes. Short and psychometrically sound questionnaires are thus required. Currently, no short and yet comprehensive questionnaire assessing the lower order facets of conscientiousness, that is suitable for large-scale educational assessments exists. Therefore, within the present investigation we develop a short-form instrument based upon the seven-factor version (59 items) of the questionnaire presented by MacCann et al. (2009), by using an exhaustive search algorithm and traditional item selection methods. Our sample consists of a large and representative dataset comprising all 9th grade students in Luxembourg from the Luxembourgish national school monitoring system (N = 6325; see epstan.lu), who answered French and German adaptations of the original 59-item questionnaire. We specified the exhaustive search algorithm to select the best possible combination of four items for each lower order facet, by considering goodness of fit criteria, factor saturation statistics, and measurement invariance between the German and French version. In addition, we used Mokken scale analysis and assessed the congruence of item wordings and theoretical definitions of each lower order facet to ensure content validity. We finally selected four to five items per scale based on our analyses. We found good fit statistics for all lower order facet scales (CFI >.95, RMSEA < 0.05), and acceptable to good factor saturation statistics for all but one of these scales (McDonalds ω > 0.7). On top of that, all scales show either scalar invariance, or partial scalar invariance between the German and French language version. The result of our investigation is a short and psychometrically sound instrument for the assessment of the lower order facets of conscientiousness. It is specifically tailored towards the unique context of the multilingual Luxembourgish educational system, and can be used in the upcoming Épstan cohorts. [less ▲]

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See detailDimensional and Social Comparisons Effects on Domain-Specific Self-Concepts and Interests: A Study of Elementary School Children from Luxembourg Across Two Waves
van der Westhuizen, Lindie UL; Talic, Irma UL; Greiff, Samuel UL et al

Scientific Conference (2018, November 09)

Already at the beginning of elementary school, students start to develop self-beliefs and attitudes that reflect their motivation, thoughts, and feelings about a specific school domain. The internal ... [more ▼]

Already at the beginning of elementary school, students start to develop self-beliefs and attitudes that reflect their motivation, thoughts, and feelings about a specific school domain. The internal/external frame of reference (I/E) model (Marsh, 1986) encapsulates this phenomenon by explicating the formation of academic self-concept through a combination of social (i.e. comparing one’s achievement in one domain with the achievement of one’s peers in the same domain) and dimensional (i.e. comparing one’s achievement in one domain with one’s achievement in another domain) comparison processes. The recently established generalized internal/external frame of reference (GI/E) model (Möller, Müller-Kalthoff, Helm, Nagy, & Marsh, 2015) builds on the I/E model by extending it to the formation of other subject-specific academic self-beliefs and attitudes, such as interest and test anxiety. Despite the salience of the (G)I/E model in educational research, studies investigating the formation of self-beliefs and attitudes according to this model remains scarce among elementary school children. This study aims to contribute to the current literature by examining the associations between verbal and mathematics achievement, on the one hand, and corresponding domain-specific self-concepts and interests, on the other hand. A population of Luxembourgish elementary school students was assessed twice, two years apart (once in Grade 1 and once in Grade 3) as part of the Luxembourgish school monitoring system (EpStan, cohorts 2014 & 2016; epstan.lu). Using a domain-specific approach, students were assessed on math and verbal achievement as well as German- and math self-concept and interest. This culminated in a sample of N = 3606 elementary school children who participated in both waves. German- and math self-concepts and interests were self-reported whereas standardized achievement tests (see epstan.lu) were used as indicators of math and verbal (Luxembourgish for Grade 1 and German for Grade 3) achievement. Cross-lagged structural equation modelling was performed in Mplus 8 using WLSMV estimation for categorical variables. Overall, the results suggest strong support for the (G)I/E model for Grade 3, while only partial support was found for the (G)I/E model for Grade 1. More specifically, for both Grade 1 and Grade 3, achievement was positively related to self-concept and interest within the same domain. Negative relations between achievement and self-concept and interest across domains were found in Grade 3, but not in Grade 1. The findings are discussed within the context of theory and research on self-concept differentiation processes, dimensional comparison theory, and the multilingual Luxembourgish educational system. [less ▲]

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