Need To Achievements Among Teenagers: Specificity And Peculiarities

Abstract

Studies related to needs-motivation nature in personality development are prompted with social significance beyond time that is included into searching for psychological determinants, allowing developing and strengthening personality traits that contribute to success gained through life activities. The purpose of the article is to identify indicators describing a need to achievement among older adolescents and to establish the relationship between this need and satisfaction taken from internal basic needs. The study addressing a need to achievements in older adolescents was conducted in three stages. At the first one, the theoretical and methodological foundations were identified, among them: personological, dispositional and humanistic principles, self-determination theory. At the second one, a sampling was selected (N = 28) out of the second-year students studying at choreography faculty at South Ural State Institute of Arts; three methodologies were applied. At the third one, the empirical data are generalized and the correlation analysis based on K. Spearman theory is carried out. The research outcomes have revealed a combination of the average (57% out of the sampling) and a high (36%) level of a need to achievements and the absolute dominance in terms of motivation towards getting success (79%) over motivation to avoiding failures (0%). The sharing of methodologies has revealed some reliable links between the level of a need to achievements and the level of satisfaction taking from the basic need as autonomy in acting; weak correlations have been established regarding levels of satisfaction towards basic needs in gaining some competence and belongingness.

Keywords: Teenagers/adolescentsbasic needsneed to achievementsmotivationself-determination

Introduction

Adaptation to changes that are happening all the time around us requires some efforts directed to self-improvements. In this vein, the abilities of a human being to personal and professional growth is becoming of high importance. The target-development of these abilities help an individual to find himself in today’s ever-changing social community and accept himself as successful personality.

The interest towards an individual need to achievements firstly appeared in literature in the 1st half 20th century. Starting with a general search for success predictors in human activity and then as the information has been gradually accumulated, the scientists could do the focus on some practical tasks, and later they shift the focus from the actual need to achievement, that is intrinsic to a human being, to motivation to achievement as a complex of a human being’s psychological characteristics, the right impact on which will generate some effective solutions towards a wide range of socially significant tasks (Gabriel, Valenti, & Young, 2015; Leary, Jongman-Sereno, Diebels, & Raimi, 2015).

People differ from each other and this means that each person has its own ‘motivational profile’, reflecting the different levels in motives being engaged into particular activity, which, in its turn, is responsible for shaping, on the basis of personality ontogeny, its needs and values. Any human activity usually has in its basis a variety of motives, including and combining both internal, based on interest in the activity itself, and external motives, suggesting some rewarding.

Problem Statement

The current interest to motivation towards achievements is based on the conclusions made by the researchers that – the motivation level towards achievements is more reliable predictor of success than the intelligence (Botvinick & Braver, 2015; Cerasoli, Nicklin, & Ford, 2014; Kruglanski, Chernikova, Rosenzweig, & Kopetz, 2014).

The today researchers who are studying the motivation aspects towards achievements admit that one of the main important factors generating the success is both high expression of the intrinsic motivation and the dominance of it over other external-nature motives, although the role of extrinsic motivation as regulator in a range of human activities should not be underestimated (Lewandowsky & Oberauer, 2016; Nolen, Horn, & Ward, 2015; Wilcox, Laran, Stephen, & Zubcsek, 2016).

Present day research conducted within the paradigm – internal and extrinsic motivation – confirmed the assumption that the intrinsic motivation is connected with higher persistence, high achievements, creativity, more pleasant imagination about own abilities and talents and low level of anxiety (Lang, 2014; Rosenzweig & Wigfield, 2014).

The research on the level of a person’s need to achievements is one of the criteria used to assess his intrinsic motivation level.

The central mission of our research is the issues related to studying the need to achievements among teenagers. We take the need to achievements as the basic internal need, i.e. the activity which is interesting to do and able to contribute positively to teenagers’ personality development.

Research Questions

The need to achievements – is one of the basic needs which is being shaping during life on the social experience and some educational efforts. This need enables to solve a wide range of issued at the high level of goals achievement (Anderson, Hildreth, & Howland, 2015; Gordeeva, 2016).

The need to achievements is shaped among children aged up to 4-5 years old and then, it is going up and up to the teenager period and become quite ripe to influence the further personality development (Blakemore & Mills, 2014; Maloney, Levine, Beilock, Converse, & Gibbs, 2015; Gabriel, Valenti, & Young, 2016; Batenova, Dolgova, Emelyanova, & Emelyanova, 2018; Dolgova, Emelyanova, Bogachev, & Batenova, 2018).

Teenager time/period is the period to personal development via self-awareness and self-determination resulting in ‘I-conception’ formation able to serve as the base to construct interpersonal relations (Martin & Olson, 2015). Learning activity in this period is reflecting the internal needs of a mature individual. In this period, when a great number of changes are happening in a teenager life, he/she begin to state life-meaning goals, choose the path to go to achieve these goals, make planning towards time and material resources and forecast what efforts can be required for it, as well as form emotional sustainability (Fishbach, Koo, & Finkelstein, 2014). Understanding the success feelings serves as a strong driver to motivating a teenager. Awareness-based need is going at the second background, then, the first one is given to the need to achievements.

The first place for the need to achievements is explained with the aspiration among teenagers to increase or keep at the level such feeling as self-respect and self-assessment, as well as the respect coming outside from other people (Jamil, 2014).

The need to achievements development leads a teenager to a choice of a strategy towards finding the balance between the motivation to success and to avoid failures. One group of teenagers aspires more to success, they actively take to solve difficult tasks which they come across on their life path, whereas, the others try to keep what they have already achieved. The teenagers with the dominance in motivation to success try to choose tasks with medium level of difficulty, the others, who are afraid of failures, choose exclusively easy tasks to do with high level of guarantee a success or highly difficult tasks where the failure is in prediction, therefore, it is expected that means it will not the matter of personal responsibility. What is featuring that for the first group failure is a motivating factor to put more efforts, whereas, for the second group it is the key to safety (Otto, Clarkson, & Kardes, 2016; Roets, Kruglanski, Kossowska, Pierro, & Hong, 2015).

Teenagers with motivation to success are searching for the activity in which the result as the final goal can be definitely evaluated as success achievement. The teenagers are actively involved into such activity; they choose appropriate tools and approaches enabling to reach the stated goals. They expect to gain outside appraisal for their doings and what they do gives them internal satisfaction. These teenagers are likely to use all pool of available resources and high concentration on the goals.

Teenagers with the need to achievements who are motivated on escaping failures try to choose, in the most part, some tasks with the optimal level of difficulty and with the minimal degree of responsibility (Orehek & Forest, 2016). They are interested in very easy tasks to do or very difficult ones, in which the failures in fulfilling are expected and not so traumatic.

Purpose of the Study

To identify the indicators towards measuring the need to achievements, including the level of satisfaction targeted at some internal basic needs.

Research Methods

We conducted the experimental research with the aim to identify the need to achievement among teenagers. There was three-stage research. At the first stage aimed at search and preparation, the theoretical and methodological foundations were identified, among them: personological, dispositional and humanistic principles, theory of self-determination. At the second (experimental) stage, a sampling was selected (N = 28) out of the second-year students studying at choreography faculty (as the secondary vocational education) at South Ural State Institute of Arts; three methodologies were applied (Orlov, 1973; Ryan, 1989; Deci & Ryan, 1996). At the third (control and concluding) stage, the empirical data are generalized and the correlation analysis is carried out.

Findings

The data, which we obtained in line with the methodology ‘Assessment scale for need to achievement’ by Orlov (1973), have shown three levels in this need: low – 7%, medium – 57% and high – 36% (fig. 1).

Figure 1: Figure 01. Research results obtained through methodology ‘Assessment Scale for Need to Achievement’
Figure 01. Research results obtained through methodology ‘Assessment Scale for Need to Achievement’
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The research results obtained through the methodology “Diagnostic towards motivations to success and avoiding failures’ (Ryan, 1989) speak that the main motive to achievements in this group is motivation to success, which is diagnosed among 79% of the respondents (fig. 2).

Figure 2: Figure 02. Research results obtained through methodology ‘Diagnostic towards Motivations on Success and Avoiding Failures’ by A. Ryan
Figure 02. Research results obtained through methodology ‘Diagnostic towards Motivations on Success and Avoiding Failures’ by A. Ryan
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The motivation rate geared at avoiding failures has not been detected in the group. The uncertain motivation towards achievements has been identified among 21% of the respondents.

In diagnosing the level of satisfaction regarding the internal basic needs (Deci & Ryan, 1996) we have detested a high level in the need of being independent (autonomy in acting) and a medium level in gaining competences and belongingness (fig. 3).

Figure 3: Figure 03. Research results obtained through methodology ‘General Scale to Measure Basic Needs Satisfaction’
Figure 03. Research results obtained through methodology ‘General Scale to Measure Basic Needs Satisfaction’
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To assess the correctness regarding the choice of the two methodologies applied (fig.1. and fig. 2 .) we conducted the correlation analysis in terms of the experimental data. The analysis was carried out with the tables containing the initial values with the help of non-parametric criterion as Spearman r-criterion. As a result of calculation, the value of Spearman correlation coefficient was obtained as r = 0.62.

In accordance with the table values, the interrelation obtained through both methodologies is estimated with high validity as the average direct correlation. This fact is leading to the conclusion that co-application of both methodologies is possible, particularly, if as purpose we state to obtain more significant results at investigating various aspects towards the need to achievements among older adolescents.

To assess the possible impact coming from the basic needs satisfaction on the level of the need to achievements and its focus that have the respondents in the group, we conducted the correlation analysis based on the table containing the initial testing values. As a result, we obtained the values ​​for the rank correlation coefficient, according to Spearman r-criterion, that is presented in table 01 .

Table 1 -
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Based on these correlation coefficients, introduced in table 01 , we can conclude the following:

1) There is the correlation dependence (from weak to medium) between the basic needs satisfaction and the need to achievements; the fact proves the hypothesis stated in the research;

2) Statistically important and valid interrelation between the need in autonomy and the need in achievements is higher than the interrelation between the need in gaining competences and the need in achievements.

Thus, the research targeted at studying the need to achievements among teenagers (older), has shown that in the group consisting of 28 respondents, the average level of the need to achievements is dominating with particular focus on gaining the success. The same conclusions were made by other researchers (Fisher, Fisher, & Shuper, 2014; King & McInerney, 2014). Our novelty deals with in compiling a specific collection of tests, which we have not found in other sources available in the world scientific literature. The basic need satisfaction in terms of autonomy is at a high level; in terms of being competent and the need in belongingness is on average level. The correlation analysis has revealed the average correlation between the factors describing the level of the need to achievements and the motive to success / avoiding failures; and the correlation relations from weak to medium between satisfaction in the basic needs and the level of the need to achievements.

Conclusion

The sharing of methodologies has revealed some reliable links between the level of a need to achievements and the level of satisfaction taking from the basic need as autonomy in acting; weak correlations have been established regarding the levels of satisfaction towards the basic needs in gaining some competences and belongingness. The direct medium correlation between the need to achievements and satisfaction in the basic internal need, in autonomy, allow to hope that theoretical and practical conclusions relating to self-determination aspects will be used in further research targeted at studying the need to achievements. However, the weak correlation between the need to achievements and the level of satisfaction in the basic internal needs, as in competences and belongingness, begs the question about purposeful interaction and work with older teenagers in terms of observing and investigating the way on how these needs are developing among them.

Acknowledgments

The research was conducted within the scientific project ‘Scientific and methodological foundations of psychology and technologies applied in managing innovation processes in education and in the ever-changing world’; within the enhancement programme and plan on scientific and research activities at the Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Education that is located at South Ural State Humanitarian Pedagogical University, for the period of 2018-2020.

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Dolgova*, V., Leonov, P., Kapitanets, E., Melnik, E., & Shayahmetova, V. (2020). Need To Achievements Among Teenagers: Specificity And Peculiarities. In D. Karim-Sultanovich Bataev, S. Aidievich Gapurov, A. Dogievich Osmaev, V. Khumaidovich Akaev, L. Musaevna Idigova, M. Rukmanovich Ovhadov, A. Ruslanovich Salgiriev, & M. Muslamovna Betilmerzaeva (Eds.), Social and Cultural Transformations in the Context of Modern Globalism, vol 76. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 737-744). Future Academy. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2019.12.04.99