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The Student Motivation Scale: further testing of an instrument that measures school students' motivation.

This study examines the refined Student Motivation Scale applied to a sample of 2561 Australian Australian

pertaining to or originating in Australia.

Australian bat lyssavirus disease
see Australian bat lyssavirus disease.

Australian cattle dog
a medium-sized, compact working dog used for control of cattle.
 high school students. The Student Motivation Scale measures six motivation boosters and four motivation guzzlers. Analysis of the data reveals a strong factor structure comprising reliable factors. Students scored relatively higher in self-belief, value of schooling, and learning focus but also relatively higher in anxiety. Senior and junior high school students reflect a more adaptive pattern of motivation than middle high school students--as do girls over boys. Boosters are more strongly (positively) correlated cor·re·late  
v. cor·re·lat·ed, cor·re·lat·ing, cor·re·lates
1. To put or bring into causal, complementary, parallel, or reciprocal relation.

 with mathematics and English 1. English - (Obsolete) The source code for a program, which may be in any language, as opposed to the linkable or executable binary produced from it by a compiler. The idea behind the term is that to a real hacker, a program written in his favourite programming language is  achievement while guzzlers are more strongly (negatively) associated with literacy and numeracy numeracy Mathematical literacy Neurology The ability to understand mathematical concepts, perform calculations and interpret and use statistical information. Cf Acalculia. . Data analysis also reveals ethnicity ethnicity Vox populi Racial status–ie, African American, Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic  effects and effects associated with socioeconomic status socioeconomic status,
n the position of an individual on a socio-economic scale that measures such factors as education, income, type of occupation, place of residence, and in some populations, ethnicity and religion.
. Taken together, examination of the data shows that the Student Motivation Scale is psychometrically sound and can be usefully implemented to determine groups of students at risk of disengagement disengagement /dis·en·gage·ment/ (dis?en-gaj´ment) emergence of the fetus from the vaginal canal.

, disinterest dis·in·ter·est  
1. Freedom from selfish bias or self-interest; impartiality.

2. Lack of interest; indifference.

To divest of interest.

Noun 1.
, and underachievement.


Motivation can be conceptualised as students' energy and drive to learn, work effectively, and achieve to their potential at school and the behaviours that follow from this energy and drive. Motivation plays a large part in students' interest in and enjoyment of school and study. Motivation also underpins their achievement (Martin, 1998, 2001, 2002; Martin & Debus, 1998; Martin & Marsh, 2003; Martin, Marsh, & Debus, 2001a, 2001b, 2003; Meece, Wigfield, & Eccles Eccles (ek`əlz), town (1991 pop. 37,166), Salford metropolitan district, NW England, in the Manchester metropolitan area on the Manchester Ship Canal. Industries include chemicals, rubber, plastics, textiles, and light and heavy engineering. , 1990; Schunk SCHUNK Germany
Among basic conditions, Friedrich Schunk founded his "mechanical workshop" in a garage in Lauffen/Neckar, Germany in 1945. The production of brake drums and fly wheels for the NSU Prince 4 and precision parts for the Porsche 365 were his first larger orders.
, 1990).

There are many instruments that measure student motivation. For the most part, however, they tend to reflect motivation that is underpinned by a single theoretical perspective (see for example, the Multidimensional mul·ti·di·men·sion·al  
Of, relating to, or having several dimensions.

 Multiattributional Causality causality, in philosophy, the relationship between cause and effect. A distinction is often made between a cause that produces something new (e.g., a moth from a caterpillar) and one that produces a change in an existing substance (e.g.  Scale--Lefcourt, Von Von. For some German names beginning thus, see under the proper name; e.g., for Otto von Bismarck, see Bismarck, Otto von.

(Voice On the Net, Video On the Net) A trade show sponsored by pulver.
 Baeyer, Ware, & Cox, 1979; the Multidimensional Measure of Children's Perceptions of Control--Connell, 1985; the Self Description Questionnaire--Marsh, 1990; the Motivation Orientation Scale--Nicholls, 1989; the Cognitive Engagement Scale--Miller, Greene, Montalvo Montalvo may refer to:

  • Montalvo, Ventura, California, a district in the city of Ventura, California, United States.
  • Montalvo (Constância), a parish in the municipality of Constância, Portugal.
, Ravindran, & Nichols Nich·ols   , Mike Originally Michael Igor Peschkowsky. Born 1931.

German-born American stage and film director whose credits include The Odd Couple (1965) and the motion pictures Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966) and
, 1996).

From the perspective of a practitioner seeking to enhance students' motivation, instruments reflecting single theoretical perspectives will yield directions for intervention A procedure used in a lawsuit by which the court allows a third person who was not originally a party to the suit to become a party, by joining with either the plaintiff or the defendant.  that target only a few (at best) dimensions of motivation. Ideally a test of motivation would be multidimensional, drawing together a number of different theoretical perspectives that better reflect the totality TOTALITY. The whole sum or quantity.
     2. In making a tender, it is requisite that the totality of the sum due should be offered, together with the interest and costs. Vide Tender.
 of students' motivational profile in the classroom. The Student Motivation Scale is an instrument that draws together a number of theoretical perspectives and measures aspects of motivation that reflect its multidimensionality.

The Student Motivation Scale has been refined since publication of initial data on its psychometric psy·cho·met·rics  
n. (used with a sing. verb)
The branch of psychology that deals with the design, administration, and interpretation of quantitative tests for the measurement of psychological variables such as intelligence, aptitude, and
 properties (Martin, 2001) and articulation articulation

In phonetics, the shaping of the vocal tract (larynx, pharynx, and oral and nasal cavities) by positioning mobile organs (such as the tongue) relative to other parts that may be rigid (such as the hard palate) and thus modifying the airstream to produce speech
 of its conceptual rationale rationale (rash´nal´),
n the fundamental reasons used as the basis for a decision or action.
 in a previous issue of this journal (Martin, 2002). An additional subscale has been added, items within subscales have been refined and reduced, and data have been collected on over 2000 additional students across a more representative selection of Australian high schools. This paper presents these data as well as motivation effects related to gender, year level, achievement, literacy, numeracy, socioeconomic status, and ethnicity.

The Student Motivation Wheel and the Student Motivation Scale

There have been numerous theoretical contributions to our understanding of motivation. Among the more influential theories are need achievement theory, self-worth self-worth
Self-esteem; self-respect.

Noun 1. self-worth - the quality of being worthy of esteem or respect; "it was beneath his dignity to cheat"; "showed his true dignity when under pressure"
 motivation theory, self-efficacy self-efficacy (selfˈ-eˑ·fi·k  theory, expectancy A mere hope, based upon no direct provision, promise, or trust. An expectancy is the possibility of receiving a thing, rather than having a vested interest in it.

The term has been applied to situations where an individual hopes and expects to receive something, generally
 x value theory, attribution theory Attribution theory is a social psychology theory developed by Fritz Heider, Harold Kelley, Edward E. Jones, and Lee Ross.

The theory is concerned with the ways in which people explain (or attribute) the behavior of others, or themselves (self-attribution), with something
, control theory, choice theory, and motivation orientation theory. Taken together, these theories tell us (a) why students do what they do, (b) how they do it, (c) their confidence in being able to do it, (d) their ability to surmount sur·mount  
tr.v. sur·mount·ed, sur·mount·ing, sur·mounts
1. To overcome (an obstacle, for example); conquer.

2. To ascend to the top of; climb.

a. To place something above; top.
 obstacles and challenges before them, and (e) their capacity to pick themselves up after academic setback setback

In architecture, a steplike recession in the profile of a high-rise building. Usually dictated by building codes to allow sunlight to reach streets and lower floors, the building must take another step back from the street for every specified added height interval.
 or hold their ground in the face of study pressures.

Martin (2001, 2002) developed the Student Motivation Wheel that comprises constructs central to these theories and the Student Motivation Scale to measure each facet facet /fac·et/ (fas´it) a small plane surface on a hard body, as on a bone.

1. A small smooth area on a bone or other firm structure.

 of the Wheel. The Student Motivation Wheel (and the Student Motivation Scale) separates motivation into factors that reflect enhanced motivation and those that reflect reduced motivation. These are called 'boosters' and 'guzzlers' respectively. Figure 1 presents the Student Motivation Wheel and Table 1 shows theoretical perspectives that underpin the Wheel.

As Figure 1 and Table 1 show and as discussed fully in Martin (2001, 2002), boosters include self-belief (central to self-efficacy theory), learning focus (motivation orientation theory), and value of schooling (expectancy x value theory and choice theory), persistence (1) In a CRT, the time a phosphor dot remains illuminated after being energized. Long-persistence phosphors reduce flicker, but generate ghost-like images that linger on screen for a fraction of a second.  (expectancy x value theory and choice theory), study management (self-regulation theory This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject.
Please help recruit one or [ improve this article] yourself. See the talk page for details.
), and planning and monitoring (self-regulation theory). Guzzlers include anxiety (need achievement theory and test anxiety research), low control (control theory, choice theory, and attribution theory), failure avoidance (need achievement theory), and self-sabotage/self-handicapping (self-worth motivation theory).

The strength of the Student Motivation Wheel is that it can be easily communicated by practitioners to students and, following from this, is readily understandable by students. The practitioner and student can easily separate the 'helpful' (boosters) motivation from the 'unhelpful' (guzzlers). Thus this model is an easy way for students to understand their motivation and an easy way for practitioners to explain it to them. When students understand motivation and the dimensions that comprise it, intervention is more meaningful to them and, as a consequence, is likely to be more successful.



Purpose of the present investigation

The Student Motivation Wheel and the Student Motivation Scale have been refined since publication of preliminary psychometric statistics based on the Scale's original form. The original model and instrument did not include a measure of study management and comprised subscales of five items each. The new Scale includes a measure of study management, includes wording refinements, and now comprises four items per subscale so as to be more easily and quickly administered in class. This investigation tests the hypothesised factor structure and also examines motivation in relation to gender, year level, achievement, literacy, numeracy, socioeconomic status, and ethnicity.


Sample and procedure

Respondents In the context of marketing research, a representative sample drawn from a larger population of people from whom information is collected and used to develop or confirm marketing strategy.  were 2561 students in Year 7, Year 9, Year 10, and Year 11 from eight government and three independent high schools in New South Wales Below are a list of schools in New South Wales:
  • List of Government schools in New South Wales
  • List of Non-Government schools in New South Wales
  • List of selective high schools in New South Wales
  • List of creative and performing arts high schools in New South Wales
 (NSW NSW New South Wales

Noun 1. NSW - the agency that provides units to conduct unconventional and counter-guerilla warfare
Naval Special Warfare
) and the Australian Capital Territory Australian Capital Territory (1991 pop. 276,468), 939 sq mi (2,432 sq km), SE Australia, an enclave within New South Wales, containing Canberra, capital of Australia. It was called the Federal Capital Territory until 1938.  (ACT). Ten schools were located in urban areas of Sydney Sydney, city, Australia
Sydney, city (1991 pop. 3,097,956), capital of New South Wales, SE Australia, surrounding Port Jackson inlet on the Pacific Ocean. Sydney is Australia's largest city, chief port, and main cultural and industrial center.
 and Canberra Canberra (kăn`bərə), city (1991 pop. 276,162), capital of Australia, in the Australian Capital Territory, SE Australia. The Canberra urban agglomeration includes a small area in New South Wales.  and one was located in a regional area of NSW. Schools primarily drew on middle to upper middle-class areas. Of students for whom gender and year-level data were available (n=2351), 39 per cent were from Year 7, 37 per cent from Year 9, 8 per cent were in Year 10, and 16 per cent were in Year 11; 46 per cent were males and 54 per cent females. Of students for whom ethnicity data were available (n=1243), a total of 177 were identified as having English as a second language. Teachers administered the Student Motivation Scale to students during class. The rating scale was first explained and a sample item presented. Students were then asked to complete the Student Motivation Scale on their own and to return the completed instrument to the teacher at the end of class.


The Student Motivation Scale is an instrument that measures high school students' motivation. It assesses motivation through six boosters and four guzzlers. Items from the ten subscales were interspersed through the instrument.

Boosters include self-belief, learning focus, value of schooling, persistence, planning and monitoring, and study management.

Self-belief(e.g. 'If I try hard, I believe I can do my schoolwork well') Self-belief is students' belief and confidence in their ability to understand or to do well in their schoolwork, to meet challenges they face, and to perform to the best of their ability.

Value of schooling (e.g. 'Learning at school is important to me') Value of schooling is how much students believe what they learn at school is useful, important, and relevant to them or to the world in general.

Learning focus (e.g. 'I feel very pleased with myself when I really understand what I'm taught at school') Learning focus is being focused on learning, solving problems, and developing skills.

Planning and monitoring (e.g. 'Before I start an assignment, I plan out how I am going to do it') Planning and monitoring is how much students plan their schoolwork, assignments, and study and how much they keep track of their progress as they are doing them.

Study management (e.g. 'When I study, I usually study in places where I can concentrate') Study management refers to the way students use their study time, organise their study timetable, and choose and arrange where they study.

Persistence (e.g. 'If I can't understand my schoolwork at first, I keep going over it until I understand it') Persistence is how much students keep trying to work out an answer or to understand a problem even when that problem is difficult or is challenging.

Guzzlers include anxiety, low control, failure avoidance, and self-sabotage.

Anxiety (e.g. 'When exams and assignments are coming up, I worry a lot') Anxiety has two parts: feeling nervous and worrying. Feeling nervous is the uneasy or sick feeling students get when they think about their schoolwork, assignments, or exams. Worrying is their fear about not doing very well in their schoolwork, assignments, or exams.

Low control (e.g. 'I'm often unsure how I can avoid doing poorly at school) Students are low in control when they are unsure about how to do well or how to avoid doing poorly.

Failure avoidance (e.g. 'Often the main reason I work at school is because I don't want to disappoint dis·ap·point  
v. dis·ap·point·ed, dis·ap·point·ing, dis·ap·points
1. To fail to satisfy the hope, desire, or expectation of.

 my parents') Students have an avoidance focus when the main reason they do their schoolwork is to avoid doing poorly or to avoid being seen to do poorly.

Self-sabotage/self-handicapping (e.g. 'I sometimes don't study very hard before exams so I have an excuse if I don't do "I Don't Do" was the debut single by glamour model Michelle Marsh, released on 6 November 2006. The single reached 27 in the UK in its first week, selling only 9,000 copies and over 16,000 copies as of January 2007. The single spend a total of four weeks in the Top 75.  as well as I hoped') Students self-sabotage when they do things that reduce their chances of success at school. Examples are putting off doing an assignment or wasting time while they are meant to be doing their schoolwork or studying for an exam.

Measurement and statistical analysis

Each booster Booster - A data-parallel language.

"The Booster Language", E. Paalvast, TR PL 89-ITI-B-18, Inst voor Toegepaste Informatica TNO, Delft, 1989.
 and guzzler guz·zle  
v. guz·zled, guz·zling, guz·zles
1. To drink greedily or habitually: guzzle beer.

 is comprised of four items. To each item, students rated themselves on a scale of 1 ('Strongly disagree') to 7 ('Strongly agree'). Each student's answers to the four items on each motivation area were then aggregated and converted to a score out of 100. Hence each student was assigned as·sign  
tr.v. as·signed, as·sign·ing, as·signs
1. To set apart for a particular purpose; designate: assigned a day for the inspection.

 ten scores out of 100. All mean scores presented in this report are rounded to whole numbers. If a student answered less than one third of the instrument, he or she was dropped from further analyses. If a student answered less than three items in a subscale, he or she did not receive a score for that subscale. Data were analysed using LISREL LISREL Linear Structural Relations  8.3 and SPSS A statistical package from SPSS, Inc., Chicago ( that runs on PCs, most mainframes and minis and is used extensively in marketing research. It provides over 50 statistical processes, including regression analysis, correlation and analysis of variance.  for Windows. Analyses included confirmatory factor analysis In statistics, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) is a special form of factor analysis. It is used to assess the the number of factors and the loadings of variables. , tests of reliability, independent samples t-tests, one-way ANOVAs, and correlations.


Confirmatory factor analysis

Before aggregating items to form ten motivation subscale scores, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA (Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986) Signed into law in 1986, the CFA was a significant step forward in criminalizing unauthorized access to computer systems and networks. The Act applies to "federal interest computers" that include any system used by the U.S. ) was carried out to justify forming these subscales. CFA was conducted using LISREL 8.3 (Joreskog & Sorbom, 1999). A detailed presentation of the conduct of CFA is beyond the scope of the present report and is available elsewhere (e.g. Bollen, 1989; Joreskog & Sorbom, 1989; Pedhazur & Schmelkin, 1991). Maximum likelihood was the method of estimation estimation

In mathematics, use of a function or formula to derive a solution or make a prediction. Unlike approximation, it has precise connotations. In statistics, for example, it connotes the careful selection and testing of a function called an estimator.
 used for the models. The raw data were used as input to PRELIS 2 (Joreskog & Sorbom, 1999) and a covariance matrix In statistics and probability theory, the covariance matrix is a matrix of covariances between elements of a vector. It is the natural generalization to higher dimensions of the concept of the variance of a scalar-valued random variable.  was produced which was subsequently analysed using LISREL. In terms of goodness-of-fit indices, the Tucker Lewis Index (TLI (Transport Level Interface) A common interface for transport services (layer 4 of the OSI model). It provides a common language to a transport protocol and allows client/server applications to be used in different networking environments. ) is emphasised, as simulation studies have shown that it is relatively independent of sample size and also imposes an appropriate penalty for inclusion of additional variables in a given model (Marsh, Balla, & Hau, 1996). Following Marsh et al., the Relative Noncentrality Index (RNI (Raw Native Interface) A programming interface in Microsoft's Java Virtual Machine used for calling native Windows elements such as GUI routines. RNI is Microsoft's Windows-oriented counterpart of Sun's JNI (Java Native Interface). ) and Root Mean Square Error of Approximation approximation /ap·prox·i·ma·tion/ (ah-prok?si-ma´shun)
1. the act or process of bringing into proximity or apposition.

2. a numerical value of limited accuracy.
 (RMSEA RMSEA Root Mean Square Error of Approximation ) are also emphasised as measures of goodness of fit Goodness of fit means how well a statistical model fits a set of observations. Measures of goodness of fit typically summarize the discrepancy between observed values and the values expected under the model in question. Such measures can be used in statistical hypothesis testing, e. . TLI and RNI values above .90 and RMSEA below .05 are typically considered to indicate acceptable fit of the data to the model.

The CFA yielded an acceptable fit to the data (chi square chi square (kī),
n a nonparametric statistic used with discrete data in the form of frequency count (nominal data) or percentages or proportions that can be reduced to frequencies.
=4018.91, df=695, TLI=.91, RNI=.92, RMSEA=.045). Factor loadings are presented in Table 2. Taken together, the loadings are acceptable.

Descriptive statistics descriptive statistics

see statistics.
 and reliability

Given the strong factor structure, it was considered appropriate to aggregate items to form subscales. Subscales were formed by generating the mean of the set of four items for each booster and guzzler. This mean was then converted to a score out of 100. All scores/100 in this paper are presented as rounded whole numbers.

Descriptive and reliability statistics for each booster and guzzler are presented in Table 3. Results show that all boosters and guzzlers are reliable (range .77 to .83). Distributional data also show that each booster and guzzler is approximately normally distributed.

In terms of boosters, students score highest on self-belief, value of schooling, and learning focus and score relatively lower in planning and monitoring (particularly), study management, and persistence. In terms of guzzlers, we see that students' anxiety is of most concern.

Correlations among boosters and guzzlers

The relationships among all boosters and guzzlers were examined using correlations drawn from the CFA conducted above. Results are shown in Table 4. Predictably, all boosters were highly positively correlated and all guzzlers were highly positively correlated. The median correlation among boosters was .62 (range .46 to .83). The median correlation among guzzlers was .54 (range .30 to .60). The median correlation between boosters and guzzlers was .02 (range -.33 to .27).

Year-level and gender effects

Year-level effects on each facet of motivation were explored using a series of one-way ANOVAs. Significant effects were followed up by post-hoc comparisons using the Newman-Keuls test. Results are shown in Table 5. Clearly there are differences between junior, middle, and senior high school students such that middle high school students are significandy lower on all boosters. Senior high school students generally perform best on motivation boosters and lowest on the guzzlers; however they are also highest in anxiety. Although junior high school students are stronger than their middle high school counterparts on boosters, they are also significantly lower in control, higher in failure avoidance, and higher in self-sabotage. When interpreting these results, it is worth noting that middle high school students primarily comprise Year 9 students and junior high students comprise only Year 7 students.

Gender effects in motivation were explored using a series of independent samples t-tests. In Table 6 are gender effects on each facet of motivation. Girls are significantly higher in value of schooling, learning focus, planning and monitoring, study management, and persistence. However girls are also significantly higher in anxiety. Boys are significantly higher in self-sabotage.

Correlations between motivation and achievement, literacy, and numeracy

The relationship between each booster and guzzler and achievement was examined using a series of Pearson product moment correlations. Mathematics and English data were available for 269 students. These students were drawn from only one school, were in Years 9, 10, and 11, and their achievement data comprised school test scores. Results are presented in Table 7. Taken together, each booster is significantly correlated with achievement such that higher scores on each booster are associated with higher achievement. In terms of guzzlers, students low in control and higher in self-sabotage tend to achieve at a lower level on the achievement measures, five of the six negative correlations Noun 1. negative correlation - a correlation in which large values of one variable are associated with small values of the other; the correlation coefficient is between 0 and -1
indirect correlation

Correlations between each facet of motivation and students' literacy and numeracy were explored. Literacy data were available for 1604 students and numeracy data were available for 1597 students. Literacy scores were computed by generating the mean of students' state/territory-based standardised Adj. 1. standardised - brought into conformity with a standard; "standardized education"

standard - conforming to or constituting a standard of measurement or value; or of the usual or regularized or accepted kind; "windows of standard width";
 test scores on reading, spelling, spelling in writing, writing content, and writing language. Numeracy scores were computed by finding the mean of students' state/territory-based standardised test scores on measurement, number, and space. Literacy and numeracy data were drawn from eight schools and from Year 7 and Year 9 students. Literacy and numeracy data were collected earlier in the same school year. Correlation coefficients Correlation Coefficient

A measure that determines the degree to which two variable's movements are associated.

The correlation coefficient is calculated as:
 are presented in Table 8.

Relatively modest effects are found for boosters. Interestingly the strongest effects are found for guzzlers such that low control, failure avoidance, and self-sabotage are negatively correlated with literacy and numeracy. Anxiety is negatively correlated with numeracy. In terms of boosters, the data show that self-belief and persistence are correlated with literacy and numeracy. Although small, there is a negative relationship between planning and numeracy. This may be because planning as measured by the Student Motivation Scale is related to assignments, study, and homework involving more extended and carefully thought-out tasks than briefer numeracy testing which may be preferred by some poorer planners.

The role of ethnicity and socioeconomic status

Of students for whom ethnicity data were available (n=1243), a total of 177 (14.2%) students were identified as having English as a second language (ESL (1) An earlier family of client/server development tools for Windows and OS/2 from Ardent Software (formerly VMARK). It was originally developed by Easel Corporation, which was acquired by VMARK. ). This was treated as a proxy for ethnicity. The relationship between ethnicity and motivation was explored using a series of independent samples t-tests. Table 9 presents findings. In terms of boosters, data show that ESL students are significantly higher than non-ESL students in value of schooling, learning focus, planning and monitoring, and study management. However ESL students are also significantly lower in perceived control. Given the relatively small size of the ESL group studied here, it is recommended that caution should be applied before generalising to the broader ESL population.

A total of 1549 students could be linked to state/territory departmental socioeconomic so·ci·o·ec·o·nom·ic  
Of or involving both social and economic factors.


of or involving economic and social factors

Adj. 1.
 data. Socioeconomic status (SES) was determined through an index of relative socioeconomic disadvantage (IRSED). Students were grouped into three groups (lower 25%, middle 50%, and upper 25%). The effect of SES was explored using a series of one-way ANOVAs. Significant effects were followed up by post-hoc comparisons using the Newman-Keuls test. Table 10 presents findings. These data show that there were no differences between any SES levels on any of the boosters. However, lower and middle SES students are significantly lower than upper SES students in control and higher in failure avoidance. Middle SES students are also significantly higher than upper SES students in self-sabotage. It is not clear how representative this group of students is of SES statuses in the broader community and so it is recommended that generalising to the broader population should be carried out cautiously.


This investigation explores the psychometric properties of the refined Student Motivation Scale as well as considering gender, year level, ethnicity, achievement, literacy, numeracy, and SES effects relevant to motivation. Taken together, results show that the factor structure of the Student Motivation Scale is clear and each subscale representing the proposed facets of motivation is reliable. In terms of boosters, students are higher on self-belief, learning focus, and value of schooling and relatively lower in planning and monitoring, study management, and persistence. In terms of guzzlers, anxiety is highest.

Middle school students are lower on boosters than junior and senior school students but junior high students are also lower in control and higher in failure avoidance. Girls are significantly higher than boys on most boosters but also higher than boys in anxiety. Boys are significantly higher than girls in self-sabotage. ESL students are significantly higher than non-ESL students in value of schooling, learning focus, planning and monitoring, and study management. Lower and middle SES students are significantly lower than upper SES students in control and higher in failure avoidance. Middle SES students are also significantly higher than upper SES students in self-sabotage.

Each booster is significantly correlated with achievement such that higher scores on each booster are associated with higher achievement. In terms of guzzlers, students low in control as well as students who are higher in self-sabotage tend to achieve at a lower level on the achievement measures. Self-belief and persistence are positively correlated with literacy and numeracy; however the strongest effects in literacy and numeracy are found for guzzlers such that low control, failure avoidance, and self-sabotage are negatively correlated with literacy and numeracy.

Boosters and guzzlers of note

It was found that the cognitive booster components are a strength among students. Data show that students are relatively high in self-belief, value of schooling, and adopt a mastery and learning approach to their studies. However, work is needed to translate these adaptive orientations into adaptive behaviour in the form of greater study management, planning, monitoring, and persistence (see Martin, 2001, 2002; Martin & Marsh, 2003).

Anxiety is the highest of the guzzlers and this is consistent with findings elsewhere (Martin, 2001). In many respects, anxiety is a hallmark hallmark, mark impressed on silverwork or goldwork to signify official approval of the standard of purity of the metal, also called plate mark. The hallmark was introduced by statute in England in 1300 and enforced by the Goldsmiths' Hall, London.  of the competitive education system Australia-wide. In this sense, at least some level of anxiety is unavoidable. Although a certain level of anxiety may be arousing and required for peak performance, excessive anxiety can be counterproductive coun·ter·pro·duc·tive  
Tending to hinder rather than serve one's purpose: "Violation of the court order would be counterproductive" Philip H. Lee.
 for some students and, to the extent that this is the case, it needs to be reduced (Martin, 2001, 2002; Martin & Marsh, 2003). Notwithstanding this, although there was a significant negative relationship between anxiety and numeracy, there was no significant effect on any achievement measures (see Table 7). This raises a question concerning its status as an unqualified guzzler.

Year-level and gender effects in motivation

A dominant finding was that junior high school and senior high school students are higher than middle high school students on boosters. These data suggest that younger high school students' adaptive motivation represents a significant window of opportunity through which to launch them into their middle high schooling. The question is what happens to students between junior high and middle high? What is it about the individual and joint effects of the demands placed upon students, their cognitive development, the emotional and social changes they experience, how they are assessed, how teachers respond to them, the way curriculum is delivered, and life events that render students significantly lower on all boosters by middle high schooling?

Existing research suggests that there is a lack of fit between the stage adolescents are at and the learning environment they experience when they move to middle high (Midgley, Middleton, Gheen, & Kumar, 2002). This research suggests that goal theory provides information on how to deal with this through the central role of teachers enhancing students' learning focus and reducing the emphasis on performance goals (see also Kumar, Gheen, & Kaplan, 2002). Other research has highlighted the social and personal instability instability /in·sta·bil·i·ty/ (-stah-bil´i-te) lack of steadiness or stability.

detrusor instability
 during this time and that this can have the effect of distracting dis·tract  
tr.v. dis·tract·ed, dis·tract·ing, dis·tracts
1. To cause to turn away from the original focus of attention or interest; divert.

2. To pull in conflicting emotional directions; unsettle.
 attention from academic goals (Hardy Hardy may refer to:
  • Hardy (blacksmithing)
  • Hardiness (plants), the ability to survive adverse growing conditions
  • Hardy (surname)
  • The Hardy Boys, a detective series
  • Hardy Boyz, a wrestling team composed of Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy
, Bukowski, & Sippola, 2002).

Taken as a whole, girls are significantly higher than boys in ratings of value of schooling, learning focus, planning and monitoring, study management, and persistence. However they are also significantly higher in anxiety. Boys are significantly higher in self-sabotage. These findings provide some insight into factors that may be contributing to boys' lower levels of achievement at state/territory and national levels. Although girls score significantly higher in anxiety, it may be that this anxiety is played out through greater diligence and persistence than with withdrawal, underperformance, and failure acceptance. As indicated above, this is supported by data in Table 6 showing that girls are significantly higher in planning and monitoring, study management, and persistence.

Achievement, literacy, and numeracy

Although self-belief and persistence are significantly correlated with literacy and achievement, they do not share as much variance The discrepancy between what a party to a lawsuit alleges will be proved in pleadings and what the party actually proves at trial.

In Zoning law, an official permit to use property in a manner that departs from the way in which other property in the same locality
 with these outcomes as do the guzzlers, low control, failure avoidance, and self-sabotage. These guzzlers play a markedly greater role in students' literacy and numeracy than the boosters. It seems that, in terms of core skills such as literacy and numeracy, it is critical to examine the maladaptive Maladaptive
Unsuitable or counterproductive; for example, maladaptive behavior is behavior that is inappropriate to a given situation.

Mentioned in: Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
 dimensions of students' motivation.

Interestingly, however, the data also show that the boosters play a stronger role in academic achievement (mathematics and English) and this implies that some facets of motivation are more relevant to academic achievement whereas others are more relevant to core skills such as literacy and numeracy. Further research is needed to determine why it is that motivation guzzlers seem to have a greater effect than boosters on core skills such as literacy and numeracy. Similar research is needed to determine why boosters seem to have a greater (positive) impact than guzzlers on achievement in key learning areas. It is possible that school achievement in this study (measured through school tests) is more likely to be influenced by study and preparation for which the boosters assessed may have a particular relevance. Hence the differences may relate principally to the type of test and not the boosters and guzzlers per se.

Ethnicity and socioeconomic effects

It is interesting that ESL students score significantly higher than non-ESL students on a number of boosters. This is consistent with findings in previous work which shows more positive orientations towards education among students of non-English-speaking backgrounds. For example, it has been found that young people from non-English-speaking backgrounds are more likely to complete school and go into higher education higher education

Study beyond the level of secondary education. Institutions of higher education include not only colleges and universities but also professional schools in such fields as law, theology, medicine, business, music, and art.
 (Marks & Ainley, 1999). It has been suggested that these students' families may instil in·still also in·stil  
tr.v. in·stilled, in·still·ing, in·stills also in·stils
1. To introduce by gradual, persistent efforts; implant: "Morality . . .
 a greater valuing of education (consistent with high scores on value of schooling here). Also there are some families who arrive in Australia with high standards of education and strong financial resources behind them. However caution should be exercised in generalising to the broader ESL or ethnic population.

There are no differences on any of the boosters as a function of SES. Lower and middle SES students are significantly lower than upper SES students in control and higher in failure avoidance. This is broadly consistent with previous research into the effects of SES, showing less adaptive educational outcomes for students from lower SES backgrounds (Ainley, 1998; Marks & Ainley, 1997; Teese, 1995). However it is not clear how representative this group of students is of SES statuses in the broader community and so it is recommended that generalising to the broader population may not be appropriate.

Enhancing students' motivation

At a meta-level, intervention designed to enhance students' motivation involves improving students' (a) approach to their schoolwork, (b) beliefs about themselves, (c) attitudes towards learning, achievement, and school, (d) study skills, and (e) reasons for learning. Also at a meta-level, intervention involves dealing with (a) educators' messages to students, (b) educators' expectations for students, (c) how learning is structured and paced, (d) feedback to students on their work, and (e) classroom goals and assessment.

To enhance students' motivation, however, we must move beyond the meta-level to consider the specific ways in which motivation is enacted in students' lives and in the classroom. The proposed model of motivation by Martin (2001) and tested using the Student Motivation Scale holds that educators are to do one or more of the following: keep high boosters high, keep low guzzlers low, increase low boosters, and reduce high guzzlers. In a previous issue of this journal, Martin (2002) has provided detailed analyses of ways to achieve each of these. (See also Martin, 2001; Martin & Marsh, 2003.)

Further conceptualising about anxiety and failure avoidance

There may be a need to extend current conceptualisation (artificial intelligence) conceptualisation - The collection of objects, concepts and other entities that are assumed to exist in some area of interest and the relationships that hold among them.  of anxiety and failure avoidance in the light of the mixed findings in the present data. For example, failure avoidance is negatively associated with literacy and numeracy, yet is positively correlated with most boosters. Similarly anxiety is negatively associated with numeracy, for example, yet is positively associated with all boosters. This contrasts with self-handicapping, for example, which is unambiguously maladaptive in motivational and achievement terms. To a lesser extent, low control is also more clearly a guzzler in achievement and motivation terms.

It seems that there may be an intermediate level of 'guzzling' that comprises anxiety and failure avoidance and which is not entirely maladaptive in either motivation or achievement terms. This intermediate level may be referred to as a 'muffler'--in which component constructs muffle motivation and achievement but do not necessarily and unambiguously reduce them as one might reasonably think a 'true guzzler' would.

The status of failure avoidance and anxiety as potential mufflers is conceptually defensible de·fen·si·ble  
Capable of being defended, protected, or justified: defensible arguments.

. One will recall that failure avoidance is a motivation to work but mainly for purposes of avoiding disappointment, poor performance, or disapproval. Hence a failure avoider is prepared to work (so it is not a guzzler per se) but perhaps not for entirely adaptive reasons (so it is not a booster). It is also conceivable con·ceive  
v. con·ceived, con·ceiv·ing, con·ceives
1. To become pregnant with (offspring).

 that students will respond to anxiety in one of two different ways. One student responds to anxiety with intensified in·ten·si·fy  
v. in·ten·si·fied, in·ten·si·fy·ing, in·ten·si·fies
1. To make intense or more intense:
 or sustained effort (hence not a guzzler in this sense) whereas the other responds with avoidance or self-protective aims (hence not a booster in this sense). Indeed, when failure avoidance and anxiety are removed from the guzzler category, the mean correlation between boosters and guzzlers shifts from .01 to -.14, the mean correlation between boosters and mufflers is .12 and the mean correlation between mufflers and guzzlers is .49. Further research is needed to explore the relevance of mufflers in a model of motivation and the utility of including failure avoidance and anxiety within an intermediate category of motivation.

Where to from here?

In addition to further research exploring possible further differentiation of some constructs, there are some areas worth pursuing in future studies. Because the data are derived from self-reports, it is important that future research examines the constructs using data derived from additional sources (e.g. teacher ratings and parent ratings). It may be that on some factors, for example, parents rate their child differently from how the child rates himself or herself. Preliminary data collected by this author suggest that, although there is consistency between parent and child ratings on most factors in the Student Motivation Scale, there are some discrepancies: children rate their anxiety markedly higher than their parents rate it and also rate their self-sabotage somewhat lower than their parents rate it. What are the implications of such discrepancies? Are parents not recognising higher levels of anxiety in their children? Do children self-sabotage more than they are prepared to admit? These are questions well suited to some qualitative research Qualitative research

Traditional analysis of firm-specific prospects for future earnings. It may be based on data collected by the analysts, there is no formal quantitative framework used to generate projections.
. Indeed Juvonen and Murdock (1993) presented evidence that adolescents employ differential attributional self-presentational strategies concerning their academic success or failure to adults and peers.

It is also important to recognise that the measures relate to school as a whole and not particular school subjects. Future research should test these constructs in the context of specific school subjects. It may be that the more focused the measures are on specific subjects, the greater their association with achievement in those subjects and the more actionable Giving sufficient legal grounds for a lawsuit; giving rise to a Cause of Action.

An act, event, or occurrence is said to be actionable when there are legal grounds for basing a lawsuit on it.
 they are from an intervention perspective.

Finally the data were collected at the one time point and so causal causal /cau·sal/ (kaw´z'l) pertaining to, involving, or indicating a cause.


relating to or emanating from cause.
 statements regarding the ability of the measures to predict achievement, literacy, or numeracy at a later time are not advanced. Future longitudinal lon·gi·tu·di·nal
Running in the direction of the long axis of the body or any of its parts.
 work is needed, particularly with a view to determining the relative contribution of each booster and guzzler to educational outcomes over time.


The research presented here confirms the strong factor structure underpinning un·der·pin·ning  
1. Material or masonry used to support a structure, such as a wall.

2. A support or foundation. Often used in the plural.

3. Informal The human legs. Often used in the plural.
 the Student Motivation Scale and, through this instrument, identifies particular student groups who need further assistance as well as those whose motivation is strong and who need to be sustained. The research also provides some direction as to which particular facets of motivation are relatively high or low and for which student groups. Although the emphasis given to each facet of motivation as well as the strategies to deal with them will vary from school to school, it is important to underscore The underscore character (_) is often used to make file, field and variable names more readable when blank spaces are not allowed. For example, NOVEL_1A.DOC, FIRST_NAME and Start_Routine.

(character) underscore - _, ASCII 95.
 the importance of maintaining motivation strengths--not just targeting areas of relative concern. Every student, classroom, and school has motivation strengths and these are very much the keys to enhancing other areas of student motivation that require closer attention.

anxiety                   learning motivation   self esteem
educational achievement   secondary education   student motivation

Table 1 Theoretical perspectives underpinning the Student
Motivation Wheel

Student Motivation Wheel           Theory

Boosters Self-belief               Self-efficacy theory
         Learning focus            Motivation orientation theory
         Value of schooling        Expectancy x value theory
                                   Choice theory
         Study management          Self-regulation theory
         Planning and monitoring   Self-regulation theory
         Persistence               Expectancy x value theory
                                   Choice theory

Guzzlers Anxiety                   Need achievement theory
                                   Test anxiety research
         Low control               Control theory
                                   Attribution theory
         Failure avoidance         Need achievement theory
                                   Self-worth motivation theory
         Self-sabotage             Self-worth motivation theory

Student Motivation Wheel           Researchers

Boosters Self-belief               Bandura, 1997
         Learning focus            Nicholls, 1989
         Value of schooling        Eccles, 1983;
                                   Wigfield, 1994
                                   Glasser, 1998
         Study management          Zimmerman, 1994
         Planning and monitoring   Zimmerman, 1994
         Persistence               Eccles, 1983;
                                   Wigfield, 1994
                                   Glasser, 1998

Guzzlers Anxiety                   Atkinson 1957
                                   McClelland, 1965
                                   Sarason & Sarason, 1990;
                                   Spielberger, 1985
         Low control               Connell, 1985
                                   Weiner, 1994
         Failure avoidance         Atkinson 1957;
                                   McClelland, 1965
                                   Covington, 1992, 1998
         Self-sabotage             Covington, 1992, 1998

Table 2 Factor loadings for the Student Motivation Scale

                            Learn-    Plan &
        Self-     Value      ing      moni-     Study
        belief    school    focus      tor      manage
         (SB)      (VS)      (LF)      (PM)      (SM)

SB1      .65
SB2      .67
SB3      .71
SB4      .72
VS1                .56
VS2                .70
VS3                .66
VS4                .74
LF1                          .67
LF2                          .69
LF3                          .75
LF4                          .74
PM1                                    .60
PM2                                    .76
PM3                                    .81
PM4                                    .57
SM1                                              .73
SM2                                              .59
SM3                                              .82
SM4                                              .75

                                Low      Failure   sabo-
        Persist    Anxiety    control    Avoid      tage
          (P)       (ANX)      (LC)       (FA)      (SS)

P1        .58
P2        .69
P3        .76
P4        .80
ANX1                 .72
ANX2                 .69
ANX3                 .66
ANX4                 .71
LC1                             .67
LC2                             .76
LC3                             .77
LC4                             .75
AV1                                       .77
AV2                                       .85
AV3                                       .50
AV4                                       .65
SS1                                                 .57
SS2                                                 .76
SS3                                                 .82
SS4                                                 .74

Table 3 Descriptive statistics and Cronbach's alphas

                           M/100    SD     Skew   Kurtosis     alpha

Self-belief                 79     14.6     .92      1.4        .79
Value of schooling          79     14.9    -1.1      1.4        .77
Learning focus              79     14.6    -.94      1.2        .81
Planning and monitoring     58     18.9    -.21     -.42        .78
Study management            68     18.2    -.64      .13        .81
Persistence                 70     15.9    -.65      .35        .81
Anxiety                     61     20.4    -.13     -.62        .79
Low control                 51     18.9     .06     -.59        .83
Failure avoidance           50     20.2     .23     -.57        .79
Self-sabotage               40     18.4     .62     -.13        .82

Table 4 Inter-scale correlations

                          SB       LF       VS       PM       SM

Self-belief (SB)          --
Learning focus (LF)      .70       --
Value of school (VS)     .77      .83       --
Plan & monitor (PM)      .46      .52      .58       --
Study manage (SM)        .56      .61      .62      .73       --
Persistence (P)          .67      .56      .66      .65      .62
Anxiety (A)              .08      .27      .19      .23      .24
Low control (LC)        -.22      .03     -.03      .02     -.01
Failure avoid (FA)      -.05      .09      .05      .16      .08
Self-sabotage (SS)      -.33     -.18     -.24     -.10     -.18

                           P        A       LC       FA       SS

Self-belief (SB)
Learning focus (LF)
Value of school (VS)
Plan & monitor (PM)
Study manage (SM)
Persistence (P)           --
Anxiety (A)              .10       --
Low control (LC)        -.15      .60       --
Failure avoid (FA)       .02      .48      .57       --
Self-sabotage (SS)      -.27      .30      .57      .51        --

Note: Correlations exceeding +/-.06 are significant at p<0.05

Table 5 Year-level motivation effects

                                Junior          Middle
                               M      SD       M      SD

Self-belief                    81    13.8      76    15.6
Value of schooling             82    14.3      75    15.3
Learning focus                 80    14.5      77    15.0
Planning and monitoring        59    18.8      55    19.3
Study management               70    18.6      66    18.4
Persistence                    72    14.9      67    16.9
Anxiety                        60    21.0      60    20
Low control                    53    19.4      50    18.7
Failure avoidance              53    21.2      49    19.4
Self-sabotage                  40    19.3      40    17.9

                                Senior                   SNK
                               M      SD       F        effect

Self-belief                    81    12.1   26.2 ***    M < J, S
Value of schooling             81    12.3   52.3 ***    M < J, S
Learning focus                 83    10.9   27.9 ***   M < J < S
Planning and monitoring        65    16.3   40.1 ***   M < J < S
Study management               74    14.9   34.1 ***   M < J < S
Persistence                    73    13.7   41.3 ***    M < J, S
Anxiety                        63    19.0    4.5 *      S > J, M
Low control                    49    17.6    8.1 ***    J > M, S
Failure avoidance              45    18.2   18.8 ***   J > M > S
Self-sabotage                  35    16.6   12.2 ***    J, M > S

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001

J=Junior high (Year 7); M=Middle high (Year 9 - primarily - and Year
10); S=Senior high (Year 11)

Table 6 Gender differences in motivation

                           Female      Male

                          M     SD    M     SD       t      Effect

Self-belief               79   13.5   79   15.7   1.5       --
Value of schooling        80   13.9   78   15.7   2.25 *    G > B
Learning focus            81   13.4   77   15.2   6.8 ***   G > B
Planning and monitoring   61   18.1   55   19.4   7.8 ***   G > B
Study management          71   16.8   65   19.1   8.2 ***   G > B
Persistence               72   15.3   68   16.5   5.2 ***   G > B
Anxiety                   64   19.5   57   20.1   8.6 ***   G > B
Low control               51   18.6   50   19.2   1.3       --
Failure avoidance         49   19.1   51   21.2   1.9       --
Self-sabotage             38   17.7   41   19.0   3.5 ***   B > G

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001
G=Girls; B=Boys

Table 7 Correlations between boosters and guzzlers and achievement

                           GPA        Maths      English
Self-belief                .34 ***    .20 ***     .36 ***
Value of schooling         .24 ***    .14 *       .26 ***
Learning focus             .27 ***    .12         .33 ***
Planning and monitoring    .17 **     .07         .21 ***
Persistence                .30 ***    .19 **      .30 ***
Anxiety                   -.07       -.01        -.11
Low control               -.22 ***   -.11        -.26 ***
Failure Avoidance         -.03        .04        -.09
Self-sabotage             -.38 ***   -.21 ***    -.41 ***

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001
GPA = Mean of maths and English achievement scores

Table 8 Correlation between each facet of motivation and literacy and

                         Literacy       Numeracy

Self-belief                .13 ***       .15 ***
Value of schooling         .02           .01
Learning focus             .05          -.03
Planning and monitoring   -.02          -.11 **
Study management           .04          -.04
Persistence                .08 **        .10 ***
Anxiety                   -.02          -.15 ***
Low control               -.27 ***      -.36 ***
Failure avoidance         -.18 ***      -.20 ***
Self-sabotage             -.29 ***      -.29 ***

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01 *** p<0.001

Table 9 Ethnicity and motivation

                            ESL        Non-ESL

                          M     SD    M     SD      t        Effect

Self-belief               80   15.1   78   15.1   1.44      --
Value of schooling        81   15.2   77   15.3   2.49 *    ESL>NESL
Learning focus            81   14.3   77   15.4   2.65 **   ESL>NESL
Planning and monitoring   58   19.9   55   18.9   2.33 *    ESL>NESL
Study management          70   17.1   66   18.9   2.72 **   ESL>NESL
Persistence               71   16.1   69   16.2   1.69      --
Anxiety                   60   19.7   59   21.0    .86     --
Low control               54   20.1   50   19.2   2.63**   ESL>NESL
Failure avoidance         20   19.8   20   20.4   1.39     --
Self-sabotage             43   19.2   40   18.8   1.92     --

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01 ESL=English as a second language
Note: A conservative Bonferroni correction would eliminate these
ethnicity effects.

Table 10 SES and motivation

                         Lower 25%   Middle 50%   Upper 25%

                          M     SD    M     SD     M    SD      F

Self-belief               79   14.3   78   14.9   79   15.2    .93
Value of schooling        79   14.9   78   15.0   78   15.9    .45
Learning focus            80   13.9   78   14.8   78   16.1   2.63
Planning and monitoring   57   19.9   55   19.2   55   18.3   1.74
Study management          68   18.8   67   19.1   68   18.2    .66
Persistence               71   15.4   69   16.7   70   15.8   2.26
Anxiety                   59   20.4   59   20.8   58   21.6    .28
Low control               53   18.7   51   19.7   48   19.6   5.83 **
Failure avoidance         51   20.8   51   20.9   48   19.7   4.31 *
Self-sabotage             40   18.7   41   19.8   38   17.6   3.36 *

Self-belief                 --
Value of schooling          --
Learning focus              --
Planning and monitoring     --
Study management            --
Persistence                 --
Anxiety                     --
Low control              L, M > U
Failure avoidance        L, M > U
Self-sabotage             M > U

* p<0.05 ** p<0.01

Note: A conservative Bonferroni correction would eliminate these SES


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For the handbook about Wikipedia, see .

This article is about reference works. For the subnotebook computer, see .
"Pocket reference" redirects here.
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1. any genetically determined characteristic; also, the condition prevailing in the heterozygous state of a recessive disorder, as the sickle cell trait.

2. a distinctive behavior pattern.
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The author would like to thank the ACT Department of Education, Youth and Family Services for its support in the conduct of part of this report.


Dr Andrew Martin
For the protagonist of Isaac Asimov's The Bicentennial Man, see that article.

Andrew Test Martin (born Andrew J. Martin on March 17, 1975 in Whitby, Ontario) is a Canadian professional wrestler.
 works in the Self-concept Enhancement and Learning Facilitation Facilitation

The process of providing a market for a security. Normally, this refers to bids and offers made for large blocks of securities, such as those traded by institutions.
 (SELF) Research Centre at the University of Western Sydney, Locked Bag 1797, Penrith South DC, New South Wales New South Wales, state (1991 pop. 5,164,549), 309,443 sq mi (801,457 sq km), SE Australia. It is bounded on the E by the Pacific Ocean. Sydney is the capital. The other principal urban centers are Newcastle, Wagga Wagga, Lismore, Wollongong, and Broken Hill.  1797. Email:
Andrew J. Martin
University of Western Sydney
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Author:Martin, Andrew J.
Publication:Australian Journal of Education
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Apr 1, 2003
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