The role of personality traits and goal orientations in strategy use

Y.J.M. Vermetten, J.G.L.C. Lodewijks, J.D.H.M. Vermunt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

146 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to contribute to the development of an integrated theory on individual learning differences. To that end, theories on learning styles, personality, and achievement motivation were combined in an explanatory model (tested with structural equation modelling). Goal orientations play an important role in this model, situated between personality traits and theories of intelligence, on the one hand, and learning strategy constructs (surface learning and deep learning), on the other. Surface-level strategies were related to entity theory beliefs and ego orientation as well as to conscientiousness, agreeableness, and effort orientation. Deep-level strategies were only directly related to task orientation and intellect. The relations found shed more light on what individual differences in learning consist of and help explain regularities in learning behavior.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-170
JournalContemporary Educational Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001


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