ABSTRACT The present study examined the relationship of personality, experience while studying, and academic performance. One hundred and seventy talented high-school students (68 males, 102 females) completed the Personality Research Form (PRF) and recorded their experience via the Experience Sampling Method (ESM). The results showed that controlling for ability, work orientation, a PRF factor, was a better predictor of grade than experience. However, an experiential variable, intrinsic motivation while studying, was related to the difficulty level of courses students took over the 4 years in high school. The results supported the notion that there are two kinds of motivation in scholastic achievement, one directed toward long-term goals, the other directed toward ongoing experience.