learned helplessness in humans critique and reformulation pdf

Learned helplessness in humans critique and reformulation pdf

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Learned Helplessness in Humans: Critique and Reformulation

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Learned helplessness in humans: critique and reformulation.

The learned helplessness hypothesis: A framework in disguise

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Learned Helplessness in Humans: Critique and Reformulation

Metrics details. The purpose of this research is to gather empirical evidence for attribution theory Weiner in J Educ Psychol 71 1 :3— The relationships between mathematics literacy in PISA and learned helplessness were also observed. Similar patterns were found between the two countries when students attributed their failure to either ability or task difficulty, but different relationships were found for other attributions.

Korean teachers and educators have recognized the issue that increasing numbers of students give up on mathematics. However, few studies have been conducted solely on how many Korean students could be labelled as mathematics abandoners see Na et al. However, these factors do not fully describe the situation, which seems like a complex problem related to psychological e. Therefore, it is still necessary to gather research evidence about why Korean students are discouraged in learning mathematics.

However, studies about learned helplessness can contribute to better understanding of the psychological factors related to avoiding learning mathematics. It is shown that Korean students have negative attitudes toward mathematics and low motivation in learning mathematics in international comparison studies Mullis et al. Also, challenge avoidance, giving up, and lack of enjoyment characterized learned helplessness according to previous studies McNabb Although most studies on learned helplessness did not focus on learning mathematics, observed behaviors of learned helplessness are very close to what Korean students reported.

Specifically, learned helplessness is adopted in this research for three reasons: 1 there are a large body of educational psychology research on learned helplessness which are fundamental for our study; 2 characteristics of mathematics abandoners are similar to what prior studies on learned helplessness have found.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development OECD provides student questionnaire data on helplessness in learning mathematics for research purposes. Particularly, the student questionnaires in PISA did not include questions about learned helplessness in mathematics because science is the focal subject of the PISA Numerous studies have attempted to define conditions in which adaptive or maladaptive behaviors occur. Learned helplessness is one of the underlined maladaptive behaviors.

Furthermore, Diener and Dweck claimed that students were likely to feel learned helplessness if they thought that the outcome was out of their control. Some researchers have also observed relationships between achievement and learned helplessness because learned helplessness has been studied in relation to underachievement McNabb Results of TIMSS and PISA have indicated that the Finnish education system is internationally well known to function comparably, while remaining close to what mathematics educators find desirable Seaberg For example, the Finnish education system emphasizes local flexibility, diversity of school curricula, and individual growth Kupiainen et al.

However, as one of the East Asian countries with high achievement, Korea is known to have standardized, content-oriented, and examination-driven curricula Leung Thus, comparisons between Korea and Finland merit further scrutiny.

As suggested by Clarke , it is critical to understand that comparison studies contribute to articulating commonalities and differences among educational systems. Practices, policies, and school systems are dissimilar between Korea and Finland, which should be considered as variables rather than a constant Keitel and Kilpatrick In this sense, these large-scale assessments might not fully address how students learn mathematics in the Korean and Finnish education systems.

The purpose of the research is to gather empirical evidence for relationships between the four attributions in Fig. Attribution theory will be discussed more in the literature review. The data analysis will examine probabilities that Korean or Finnish students feel learned helplessness for mathematics with respect to the attribution theory.

Comparing Korea and Finland will show similarities and differences in the probabilities for learned helplessness and the relationships between learned helplessness and mathematics literacy. The questions guiding this research are: 1 What are the probabilities that Korean and Finnish students feel learned helplessness when they attribute academic outcomes to the following perceived causes via PISA academic ability, the effort spent in preparation, difficulty of tasks, and luck elements?

And 2 what are the differences between Korean and Finnish students in the relationships between their feelings of learned helplessness and mathematic achievement? Four attributions that explain academic outcomes McNabb , p. To answer the research questions, I relied on literature about the following topics: 1 what learned helplessness is, 2 how it has been studied theoretically and empirically, and 3 how learned helplessness differs in various cultural contexts.

Theoretical and empirical studies on learned helplessness provide supportive evidence for attribution theory Weiner to explain learned helplessness. Cross-cultural studies might help to show how the attribution theory can be applied to Korea. Lastly, we will discuss PISA because understanding of mathematical literacy is critical to interpreting and generalizing the findings in this research. Learned helplessness involves the belief that nothing does matter as we can reason intuitively.

Helplessness is learned with pairing the above two conditional probabilities and generalizing them across all responses, which indicates that learned helplessness is cognitive. The animal must identify the lack of dependency and must expect that an important outcome and its response are independent Maier and Seligman Learned helplessness have been studied in human setting since s.

There are three directions of such studies: a replication in apparently analogous human settings e. Particularly, research in the second direction has shown that people would show long-term helplessness if they attribute their helplessness to permanent causes rather than temporary causes. In addition, learned helplessness in the laboratory could produce the eight symptoms of depressive disorder: sad mood, loss of interest, weight loss, sleep problems, psychomotor problems, fatigue, worthlessness, indecisiveness or poor concentration Maier and Seligman , p.

Differently from the psychological studies, prior educational research has explored learned helplessness as unpleasant emotion with a connection to a predictor of poor academic performance or underachievement.

Educators have well recognized interactions between cognition and emotion and the effects of emotions in learning mathematics Di Martino and Zan Although actual effects of emotions are difficult to examine, students emotional responses can shut down their problem solving entirely when faced with a lot of pressures in a situation Hannula According to McNabb , p. On the opposite side, challenge avoidance, giving up, and lack of enjoyment were regarded as maladaptive or helpless academic behaviors.

Helplessness itself can be defined as an emotional status. To sum up, students who feeling learned helpless can be characterized with the three maladaptive behaviors, challenge avoidance, giving up, and lack of enjoyment. Weiner established a foundation to examine learned helplessness by suggesting attribution theory. This theory is grounded on the claim that the way students attribute outcomes to perceived causes is connected to academic performance and learned helplessness Marsh Weiner and his colleagues originally suggested the four attributions in Fig.

Locus of control was considered important even before attribution theory was proposed because it was broadly assumed that students felt helpless when outcomes are out of their control Abramson et al. However, there have been critiques saying that these dimensions were ambiguous. For example, efforts could be stable when a person had the stable intent to work hard Hau and Salili and ability may be unstable if a person believe that ability is not fixed, but changeable across time McNabb With respond to those critiques, he suggested one more dimension: controllability, which should be distinguished from locus of control.

Controllability is about whether or not students are able to deal with perceived causes, while locus of control is about whether perceived causes are external or internal. This is because a complex model is not always a better option for research.

Another rationale for using the original model is the structure of the PISA data. The initial two dimensions, conversely, could be observable through the PISA database. Hau and Salili summarized instruments measuring specific causes developed before see Hau and Salili , pp. The 72 items on 24 scenarios in mathematics and reading were designed in the SAS to produce five-scale points for efforts, ability, and external causes.

Details will be presented in the method section to describe the variable selection process. The simple questions directly examining each attribution can be less reliable than instruments like the SAS, but this is the limitation of secondary analysis with an existing dataset. After development of instruments measuring specific attributions, research focus shifted to relationships between measured attributions e.

Because learned helplessness has been considered problematic with a connection to underachievement, this shift can be somewhat expected. However, only few studies can be found using these datasets e. This indicates the research opportunities given by the international comparison studies and the research gap in mathematics education. Holloway summarized literature about differences in student perceptions on attributions between Japan and the United States at great length.

In addition, Tuss et al. They found that controllable attributions had a more significant role in performance for the Asian students than for the American students.

These cross-cultural studies can contribute to a better understanding of attribution theory in different contexts as well as cultural factors which play a role in learned helplessness and underachievement. Interestingly, most of the cross-sectional studies were related to the United States, China, and Japan. I argue that learned helplessness in Korea can be interesting because learned helplessness is generally emphasized in studies of underachievement, while Korea are one of the countries with the high mathematics achievement.

Japan is also a high-achieving country, but Tuss et al. It is important to understand what is measured in the PISA to interpret results about the relationships between learned helplessness and scores in mathematics literacy. Mathematics literacy served as the foundation of the assessment framework. A model of mathematical literacy in practice OECD , p. Formulating situations mathematically involves identifying opportunities to apply and use mathematics—seeing that mathematics can be applied to understand or resolve a particular problem or challenge presented.

It includes evaluating mathematical solutions or reasoning in relation to the context of the problem and determining whether the results are reasonable and make sense in the situation. To answer the research questions, the data analysis consists of two steps. First, ordinal regression analyses are applied to produce the probability that students feel learned helplessness in connections to the degree of agreement to each attribution.

Second, a linear regression analysis is employed to test whether Korea shows significantly different relationships between mathematics literacy and learned helplessness than Finland. Thus, I collect and analyze only data from these students who completed the student questionnaire. Deleting the missing data is due to the questionnaire design, which could lead to the conclusion that the sample is still representative of the population in each country.

My final sample sizes are for Finland and for Korea. The plausible values as a set are more appropriate to describe the performance of the Korean and Finnish student populations OECD , p. In addition, Mullis et al. Furthermore, averaging plausible values is not an option for analysis because that leads to biased estimates von Davier et al. Although hypothesis tests like Chi square tests are not conducted to compare differences, the two tables show that a larger portion of Finnish students strongly and moderately agreed to the question about each attribution.

At the same time, a larger percentage of Korean students feel learned helplessness than Finnish students Lastly, the total valid cases indicate the sample sizes for the analyses no the relationships between locus of control and learned helplessness.

The weighted average score of the Finnish students are approximately while those of the Korean students are approximately In addition, Finnish students have less standard deviations compared to Korean students. Considering learned helplessness and mathematical literacy together, it is notable that students are likely to have higher scores and less variances of mathematical literacy in both countries as students more strongly agree that they felt learned helplessness.

This research has two focuses in the binational comparison: the relationships a between each attribution and learned helplessness and b between learned helplessness and mathematical literacy. In other words, this research attempts to examine who is likely to feel learned helplessness with a connection to locus of control, and then, what is their achievement in mathematical literacy.

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Abramson, L. Hopelessness depression: A theory-based subtype of depression. Psychological Review, 96 , — Learned helplessness in humans: Critique and reformulation. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 87 , 49— Achenbach, T. Agaliotis I.

By Dr. Saul McLeod , published Depression is a mood disorder which prevents individuals from leading a normal life, at work socially or within their family. Behaviorism emphasizes the importance of the environment in shaping behavior. The focus is on observable behavior and the conditions through which individuals' learn behavior, namely classical conditioning, operant conditioning and social learning theory.

Learned helplessness in humans: critique and reformulation.

The argument is that the reformulated hypothesis should be regarded primarily as a psychological framework. However, most interpretations of the hypothesis have treated it as a specific, experimental model. Consequently, some of the more essential ideas presented in the original helplessness statements have been criticized inappropriately.

The learned helplessness hypothesis: A framework in disguise

Metrics details. The purpose of this research is to gather empirical evidence for attribution theory Weiner in J Educ Psychol 71 1 :3— The relationships between mathematics literacy in PISA and learned helplessness were also observed. Similar patterns were found between the two countries when students attributed their failure to either ability or task difficulty, but different relationships were found for other attributions.

The origin and development of research on learned helplessness is briefly overviewed with attention to the reasons for the controversy that surrounds the study of learned helplessness and derived physiological, psychological, and behavioral phenomena. The need to remedy past focus on American research and English language journals in this area is noted. The heuristic value as well as the wide ranging empirical value of the research domain is lauded. The meretricious emerging social and legal barriers to this research are noted to be unrealistic and unfortunate. This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

MJCP | Mediterranean Journal of Clinical Psychology


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MJCP | Mediterranean Journal of Clinical Psychology

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  • Sabine M. 26.04.2021 at 13:05

    The learned helplessness hypothesis is criticized and reformulated. The old hypothesis, when applied to learned helplessness in humans, has two major.


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