Encyclopedia of Personality and Individual Differences

Living Edition
| Editors: Virgil Zeigler-Hill, Todd K. Shackelford

Achievement Values

  • April TaylorEmail author
  • W. David Wakefield
  • Daryl Tate
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_488-1



The motivation-related construct which refers to desire, preference, or “wanting” certain academic goals and outcomes


Achievement values, broadly defined, focus on one’s purpose for engaging in and succeeding on a task. The research on achievement values is grounded in expectancy-value theory (Atkinson 1957). Expectancy-value theory describes one’s motivation to engage in a task as a function of one’s expectations for success and how much they value the outcome. Expectancies represent one’s beliefs in their abilities (i.e., “Can I do this?”), whereas values represent one’s desirefor achievement (i.e., “Do I want it?”). According to expectancy-value theory, individuals are more likely to engage in tasks that they feel they are competent in or can accomplish successfully; however, even if highly competent, one is unlikely to engage in a task if it has little perceived value for them (e.g., I am really good...

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG (outside the USA) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Child and Adolescent DevelopmentCalifornia State UniversityNorthridgeUSA
  2. 2.University of ArkansasLittle RockUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Monika Wróbel
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of PsychologyUniversity of LodzLodzPoland