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Motivational profiles in high school students: Differences in behavioural and emotional homework engagement and academic achievement


  • This work was carried out with the funding of the research project EDU2013-44062-P of the State Plan of Scientific and Technical Research and Innovation 2013–44062 (MINECO) and with the financing received by the first author in the FPU programme of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sport.


This work examined whether combinations of academic and non-academic goals generated different motivational profiles in high school students. Besides, differences in homework behavioural engagement (i.e. amount of homework, time spent in homework, homework time management), homework emotional engagement (i.e. homework anxiety) and academic achievement were analysed. Participants were 714 high school students (43.4% boys and 56.6% girls). The study of potential motivational profiles was conducted by latent profile analysis, and the differences between the motivational profiles regarding homework variables and academic achievement were analysed using multivariate analysis. The results indicate the existence of five groups of motivational profiles: a group of students with multiple goals, a group of unmotivated students, two groups of students with a predominance of learning goals and, finally, a group comprising students with a high fear of failure. Both the group with multiple goals and the learning goals-oriented groups reported to do more homework, spending more time on homework, making better use of that time and having a higher academic achievement than counterparts. The avoidance-failure group and the group with multiple goals showed higher levels of homework anxiety. Globally, these results provide support for a person-centred approach.