Pursuing Academic Interests: The Role of Implicit Theories


Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Miron Zuckerman, Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in Psychology, University of Rochester, Meliora Hall, P.O. Box 270266, Rochester, NY 14627-0266. E-mail: miron@psych.rochester.edu


Students can believe that their academic interests are fixed (entity theory) or malleable (incremental theory). A measure of implicit theories of academic interests was developed to examine how such theories influence students’ decisions to retain or change their majors. As hypothesized, entity theorists who believed that they were not doing well in their majors were more likely to choose a new major than were all other groups. This result is consistent with previous findings that entity theorists tend to give up in the face of adversity.