1. Basic Assumptions:
-Prior learning acts as building blocks to increasingly complex learning.
-Learners are diverse and learning is not a single process.
-Learning is achieved by creating causal inferences.
-Learner motivation is affected by whether the learner attributes success or failure to a skill or ability (Gredler, 2001).
2. Components of the Theory:
-Learner motivation is determined by the idea of what the learned outcome will be and the functionality of the skill
-Attributions may influence motivation through expectancy of future outcomes or emotional reactions associated with the outcome (Weiner, 1985).
-Three dimension taxonomy for classifying attributes; locus of causality (internal or external), stability of causality (changable or unwavering), and responsibility of the student (controlable or uncontrollable) (Albert & Luzzo, 1999).
3. Basic Instructional Assumptions:
-Learners' search for understanding and what learners attribute past behavioral outcomes to are both sources of motivation (Gredler, 2001).
4. Components of Instruction and Instructional Strategies:
-Teachers must provide positive feedback because this is an important factor in student perceptions of their ability (Barker & Graham, 1987). For example, teachers could provide positive notes to all students and parents to encourage students.
-Teachers must treat all students equally and consistently.
5. Other Educational Issues:
-Causal beliefs about past success and failure are the chief determinants of learner motivation.
-Failure-oriented students are not as ready for new learning and are more likely to attribute their failure to personal ability (Gredler, 2001).
-The social context for learning affects how the learner attributes causes for his/her success and failure. Reaction of peers and teachers can determine whether a student attributes failure to lack of ability (sympathy) or lack of effort (anger).