Author’s final pre-print version of Outcomes from a self-generated utility value intervention on fifth and sixth-grade students’ value and interest in science


The purpose of this field experiment was to understand whether fifth and sixth-grade students were able to write about the usefulness and relevance of what they were learning in their science class through self-generated reflections and to examine the impacts of this activity on students’ value, utility value, and interest for science. Analysis of students’ essays revealed in the self-generated reflection condition students connected what they were learning to their lives significantly more than the control condition. Linguistically, student essays did not differ between the two conditions, except for cognitive processing. Self-reflecting increased students’ utility value but not value nor interest. Self-efficacy did not moderate these relations. Implications for extending self-generated utility value and broader social-psychological interventions for early adolescent students are discussed.

International Journal of Educational Research