Preliminary evaluation of a self-report tool for Learned Helplessness and Mastery Orientation in Italian students.

Luana Sorrenti, Pina Filippello, Sebastiano Costa, Caterina Buzzai


Learned helplessness (LH) is defined as a passive behavior characterized by an inability to learn that may affect the academic success of students. Conversely, students who show good motivation skills, optimism and perseverance are more focused on tasks and ‘mastery oriented’ (derived from Mastery Orientation, MO). The purpose of this study was to develop a self-report measurement of LH and MO - the Learned Helplessness Questionnaire (LHQ) - for the Italian scholastic context. We translated and adapted a student self-evaluation register, the Student behaviour checklist, and administered the questionnaire to Italian students in order to provide a preliminary factor structure. Exploratory factor analyses conducted support a two-factor model and acceptable internal reliability of the Italian LHQ.The results encourage the conduction of further analysis to assess the psychometric characteristics of the LHQ in depth. 


learned helplessness; Mastery orientation; Academic achievement; Exploratory factor analyses

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