Attainment Value

Attainment value is the importance students attach to the task as it relates to their conception of their identity and ideals or their competence in a given domain (Wigfield, 1994). For example, students who identify themselves as athletes set goals related to their sport. Students who pride themselves on being good students seek affirmation in the form of grades or test scores. These students are motivated to attain the goals because they are associated with the students’ perceptions of who they are. Providing students with models who value academic achievement may be one way to increase attainment value. Rimm (1995) suggested that same sex models who resemble the student in some way are the most effective models. In addition, educators can personalize the school experience by helping students to integrate academic goals into their ideals. Educators can help students to become more personally invested in their educational experience by making it meaningful for them.