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Effects of practicing self-control on academic performance

Job, Veronika; Friese, Malte; Bernecker, Katharina (2015). Effects of practicing self-control on academic performance. Motivation Science, 1 (4), pp. 219-232.

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Research suggests that regular practice can improve self-control, usually indicated by self-report measures assessed during or shortly after the practice intervention. The present study looked at objectively measured end of the year grade point average (GPA) as the focal outcome of a self-control training intervention. Participants in the self-control training conditions squeezed a handgrip twice a day for two weeks. To isolate placebo effects, expectations about the effect of the training were manipulated. As compared to a no-treatment control condition, participants in both self-control training conditions earned higher GPA and they reported spending more hours with study-related activities four weeks prior to the exams. The effects were mediated by reduced study-related effort avoidance, but not by increased inhibitory control or resistance to fatigue. The results indicate that practicing self-control may have long-term effects on academic performance and provide first evidence for a motivational mechanism.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

PHBern Contributor:

Bernecker, K.




Sibylle Blanchard

Date Deposited:

10 Jun 2024 16:03

Last Modified:

10 Jun 2024 16:03




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