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Our study tested whether learning is shaped by funda-mental cognitive and motivational forces in the academic domain of writing. We examined whether strategic writ-ing behavior and motivation (attitudes toward writing and self-efficacy) made a statistically significant and unique contribution to the prediction of writing quality and num-ber of words written, after controlling for variance due to other components and gender. Overall, 227 fourth-grade students (120 girls, 107 boys) wrote a personal narrative story and completed instruments examining their stra-tegic writing behavior and motivation. Strategic writing behavior and motivational measures accounted for sta-tistically significant and unique variance in predicting writing quality. This was also the case for the motiva-tion variables when number of words was the writing performance measure. These findings provided support for the model of domain learning as applied to writing. Both cognitive and motivational variables made separate and unique contributions to predicting the writing per-formance of young, developing writers.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Journal Article

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