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An attributional investigation of performance outcomes for learningdisabled and normal-achieving pupils

By Douglas J. Palmer, Ph. D, Fred Drummond, Patricia Tollison and Steve Zinkgraff


(NA) pupils ’ attributions, expectancies, affect, and persistence were assessed. Ability attri-butions for failure differed for LD and NA pupils. In addition, effort was judged as more important in determining success than failure for both LD and NA pupils. Furthermore, it was found that LD pupils were less persistent and were perceived by teachers to be more learned helpless than NA pupils. Findings are discussed in light of attributional and learned-helplessness literature. School failure may result not only in academic deficits but in motivational con-sequences that can interfere with pupils ’ adaptive functioning in and out of school settings. Zigler (1966) argues that as a result of repeated failure, re-tarded individuals have a high expectancy for failure and are outerdirected

Year: 1982
DOI identifier: 10.1177/002246698201600208
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:
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