The role of neuroticism and conscientious facets in academic motivation


Introduction: Personality differences have been demonstrated to influence an individual's academic performance in different ways. Notably, conscientiousness is the most consistent significant predictor of academic performance, while neuroticism shows inconsistent results.

Objectives: This study aimed to determine the relationship between the facets of conscientiousness and neuroticism on academic motivation.

Method: The study was conducted in Australia and consisted of 285 undergraduate students. The International Personality Item Pool and Motivated Strategies Learning Questionnaire were used to measure personality and motivation, respectively. Structural equation modeling results revealed that conscientiousness had the most significant relationship with academic motivation, while neuroticism was negatively related. The conscientious facets of self-efficacy and achievement striving were positively related to academic motivation. The results also revealed that the anxiety facet of neuroticism was the only significant positive predictor for academic motivation, while depression and vulnerability were negatively related.

Conclusion: This study reveals how personality facets contribute to academic motivation over assessing grades and superordinate factors alone. Trait-level anxiety significantly contributes to academic motivation, helping us shed light on underlying mechanisms such as defensive pessimism, resulting in higher motivation due to fearing the worst.


academic motivation, Big-5, conscientiousness, facets, neuroticism, C. F. Halverson, Jr., G. A. Kohnstamm, & R. P. Martin (Eds.), “The developing structure of temperament and personality from infancy to adulthood” (pp. 139-150). Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc

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