Fostering Self-concept and Interest for Statistics through Specific Learning Environments

Ute Sproesser, Joachim Engel, and Sebastian Kuntze

Supporting motivational variables such as self-concept or interest is an important goal of schooling as they relate to learning and achievement. In this study, we investigated whether specific interest and self-concept related to the domains of statistics and mathematics can be fostered through a four-lesson intervention focusing on statistics. Data about these motivational variables and achievement related to statistics were gathered from 503 eighth graders. Our results indicate that students perceived mathematics and statistics differently with respect to their self-concept and interest. Moreover, statistics-related self-concept and interest could be fostered through the domain-specific intervention, whereby a greater increase was found among students with higher prior achievement in the domain of statistics.