A positive psychological intervention for failing students: Does it improve academic achievement and motivation? A pilot study

Anna Muro, Joaquim Soler, Àusias Cebolla, Ramon Cladellas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© 2018 Elsevier Inc. In the last decade, positive psychology interventions (PPI) applied in both clinical and non-clinical samples have demonstrated a proven efficacy to increase positive emotions, well-being, and life satisfaction. However, few studies have used objective indicators of performance to explored the efficacy of PPI to increase students’ motivation to study or to improve performance. Therefore, we developed and applied a PPI in a sample of high-school students with poor academic achievement. A pre-post study design including both an interventional and a control group was developed to compare the two groups in terms of average grades and number of failed subjects. Average grades increased significantly in both groups (repeated-measures ANOVA), but this increase was higher in the PPI group. Based on regression analyses, the two factors that explained 40% of the motivation to continue studying were allocation to the PPI group and the overall grade average post-intervention. These findings suggest that PPIs are effective in increasing motivation to study and in enhancing the academic performance of poor performing high school students.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-132
JournalLearning and Motivation
Volume63
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2018

Keywords

  • Academic achievement
  • Failing students
  • Positive psychology
  • School motivation

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