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The influence of perceived accountability and outcome interdependence on goals and effort

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Abstract

Self-regulatory processes are central to achievement contexts, as individuals spend much of their time in these situations pursuing goals. This study investigated the effects of accountability and outcome interdependence on goal and effort regulation over time. Participants completed five task trials, reporting goals and intended effort prior to each trial and receiving performance feedback after each trial. Hierarchical linear modeling analyses indicated that there was a positive within-person relationship between performance and subsequent goals. More importantly, findings indicated that the performance–goal relationship was moderated by accountability and the performance–effort relationship was moderated by outcome interdependence. These results reveal that the goal and effort regulation patterns observed in prior studies are influenced by common social contextual factors, leading to different patterns of self-regulation.

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