THE EFFECT OF CERTAIN TEACHER EVALUATIVE STATEMENTS UPON THE CONTINUING MOTIVATION AND PERFORMANCE OF FOURTH GRADE STUDENTS IN ART
The effects of teacher evaluative statements on art-related tasks were studied among 80 fourth-grade students. The dependent variables included drawing time, drawing score (art performance), tangram time, tangram score (creative problem-solving), and continuing motivation. Four classes from public schools were randomly assigned to four groups of 20. These groups were tested on preassessment measures on the Art and Me Scale (AAMS), Group Inventory for Finding Creative Talent (GIFT), and the Torrance Test of Creative Thinking, Figural Form A (TTCT). During the experimental phase of the study each group was exposed to one of three different evaluation conditions: evaluation with grades being stressed as important, evaluation with peer comparisons stressed, self-evaluation with subjects being told they were responsible for assessing their results, and a control group. The experimental conditions were delivered via scripts as were the task instructions. The following conclusions were drawn: (1) It was found that the groups were very similar on three preassessment measures. Group equivalency was established on the AAMS and the TTCT. A significant difference was noted on the GIFT, although mean scores were very similar. Sex of subject was not significant in any of the analyses. (2) The group that received the treatment where grades were stressed as being important spent the most time on the drawing task, but was least willing to commit themselves to doing similar tasks at a later date. (3) No significant differences were found in the artistic quality of the drawings among the four groups. (4) On a creative problem-solving task (tangram puzzle) there were no significant differences among the four groups regarding time spent on the task. There was a significant difference on the quality of the tangram solutions with the group receiving the treatment where grades were stressed obtaining the highest score regarding quality of the tangrams. (5) It is presumed that there are inherent differences in the nature of drawing and creative problem-solving tasks. This perhaps explains discrepancies between drawing and tangram time and drawing and tangram scores. (6) The threat of grades and peer comparisons seems to be detrimental to continuing motivation of students regarding art and creative problem-solving tasks. Students who self-evaluated their performance were the most willing to continue their efforts with art and creative problem-solving tasks.
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