Understanding middle students' beliefs about knowledge and learning using a multidimensional paradigm
Mau, Wei-Cheng J.
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Schommer-Aikins, M., Mau, W.-C., Hutter, R., & Brookhart, S. (2000). Understanding middle students' beliefs about knowledge and learning using a multidimensional paradigm. Journal of Educational Research, 94(2), 120-127. doi:10.1080/00220670009598750
Recent theory (Schommer, 1990) suggests that personal epistemology is multidimensional. The multidimensional epistemology structure with middle school students was tested in this study. Over 1,200 students in Grades 7 and 8 completed an epistemological belief questionnaire. Prior theory, developed with college students, suggested 4 epistemological belief factors: Ability to Learn, Structure of Knowledge, Speed of Learning, and Stability of Knowledge. Confirmatory factor analysis applied to a random half of the sample indicated that a 3-factor model was a good fit to the data. That model was replicated with the second half of the data. Follow-up regression analyses indicated that the more students believed in gradual learning and incremental ability to learn, the higher GPA they earned.
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