Can success in school be explained just by cognitive competencies or affective beliefs, or is it the combination of both? This is the central question of the Learning-to-Learn theory examined. Following a Finnish community sample from 13 to 18 years old (N = 1966), this study found that both cognitive competencies and affective beliefs are related to concurrent and later educational achievement. While the association between cognitive competencies and educational achievement was more important at age 13, by age 18 the association between affective beliefs and educational achievement had become more important. Moreover, while cognitive competencies improve during adolescence, affective beliefs show a common downward trajectory. Implications for practice and theory are discussed
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