Attitudes and motivations of students taking professional certificate examinations

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Pi-Yueh Cheng
Mei-Lan Lin
Chia-Kai Su
Cite this article:  Cheng, P., Lin, M., & Su, C. (2011). Attitudes and motivations of students taking professional certificate examinations. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 39(10), 1303-1314.


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In this study we explored the attitudes and motives of business studies students taking examinations for professional certificates, where their participation may have a cognition-oriented motive. The study was divided into 2 phases: in the first phase, a questionnaire survey was used to examine the differences between internal and external encouragement perspectives for those students with and without professional certificates. We found that the intrinsic motivation of students with professional certificates was significantly higher than their extrinsic motivation. In the second phase we examined whether the impact of the external justifications of attitude changes are associated with students’ attitudes toward participation in the examination. Multiple regression analyses revealed that reward, satisfaction, effort, responsibility, and commitment were predictive of participants’ attitudes.

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