The perception of outcome effort covariation in younger and older men

M. A. Okun, I. C. Siegler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

5 Scopus citations


The subjects, 21 young (average age= 18.95, SD= 1.13) and 21 older (average age= 68.62, SD= 4.75) men, participated in a bogus convergent thinking task in which they rated their effort expenditure after experiencing varying degrees of success. It was proposed that younger, but not older men would exhibit outcome effort covariation. As predicted, results indicated that younger, but not older men perceived that they tried harder when they succeeded relative to when they failed. The findings imply that the older men's lack of outcome effort covariation has inimical consequences for their learning in contexts where initial failure experiences are likely. 'Attribution retraining' was suggested as a potential intervention strategy. Research with older adults is advocated to examine whether causal ascription of failure to lack of effort is related to persistence at the task.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEDUC.GERONTOL.
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 1977
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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