Goals are cognitive representations of future objects that an individual is committed to approach or avoid. Goals are important in motivation and self-regulation, because they focus people's attention on specific possibilities and guide their behavior toward concrete aims. The topic of goals is important to educational psychologists, as they research how general motivational energy is given specific direction in educationally relevant contexts. In this entry, the goal construct is defined in more elaborate fashion, and achievement goals are defined and conceptualized.

Definition of Goal

A more complete understanding of the aforementioned definition of goal may be acquired by considering each of its facets separately.

Cognitive Representation

A goal is a cognitive representation, which means that goals are inferred, not observable, constructs. Goals are restricted to organisms that utilize a ...

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