Australian Journal of Education

Article Title

Multiple goals in a Hong Kong Chinese educational context : an investigation of developmental trends and learning outcomes


Social goals have also been proposed as important additions to mastery and performance goals in educational contexts, particularly in non-Western cultures but no study has yet tested the possibility that such goals can also combine with mastery and performance goals leading to superior learning outcomes. Longitudinal studies are also rare in this area. The effect of changing motivational groups has also seldom been examined. This study examines the academic achievement, learning strategies and self-attributes at two points of time of students from multiple motivational groups: mastery, performance and social. The findings demonstrate that the usual grouping of mastery and performance is incomplete as the impact of goals on achievement cannot be properly understood unless social goals are included, although about a third of students had none of these goals at all. Those in the higher groups for all three goals had higher sense of purpose, but only those in high mastery and performance (and thus not social) had a higher sense of self-reliance and intellectual self. It is likely that the various dimensions of social goals may be related importantly to various desirable outcomes.