chapter  2
46 Pages

Improving Academic Performance

Prior researchers have presented both theoretical models and empirical evidence supporting a positive association between greater effort and higher performance. Vroom (1964), for example, argued that performance is a function of a multiplicative combination of ability and motivation. In testi ng Vroom's model, researchers have often operationalized motivation in terms of expenditure of effort or energy. In one such study, Terborg (1977) found that effort was significantly associated with performance on a learning task. A study by Peters (1977), which examined the performance of undergraduates on a spelling task, concluded that performance was highly correlated with skill level and marginally associated with effort. A third study by Terborg and Mi Iler (1978) demonstrated that quantity of output was significantly associated with both self and supervisory perceptions of effort as well as with abi Iities needed to do the task.