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Motivation at preschool age and subsequent school success: role of supportive parenting and child temperament

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Irina L. Mokrova (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Marion O'Brien

Abstract: Children's motivation has been identified by prior research as a predictor of academic achievement, but motivation in preschool age remains largely understudied. The present study examined the role of motivation at preschool age as a process mechanism through which maternal beliefs and supportive parenting in early childhood are related to children's academic success in first grade. Additionally, the role of child temperament as a predictor of motivation and academic success and as a moderator in the relations between supportive parenting and child motivation was examined. NICHD Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development data - a longitudinal study of 1364 children and their families - were used in the study. The results indicated that lower levels of maternal obedience beliefs and higher levels of supportive parenting in early childhood were associated with higher levels of children's motivation in preschool age, which in turn was associated with higher levels of academic success in first grade. Children with higher levels of effortful control also expressed higher levels of motivation and subsequent academic success. Children with higher levels of surgency had higher academic success, but did not differ in terms of motivation. Child negative emotionality was related to neither motivation nor academic success. Additionally, the relations between maternal supportive parenting and children's motivation did not vary depending on child temperamental characteristics. The results of the study highlight the role of motivation at preschool age in children's subsequent academic success and the need for further investigation of development of motivation in early childhood.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2012
Academic success, Child motivation, Early childhood, Parenting, Temperament
Academic achievement
Motivation (Psychology)
Child development $x Psychological aspects
Parental influences
Parenting $x Psychological aspects