Students do not always use efficient strategies to solve scientific problems. Students' motivation beliefs were assessed through an on-line survey instrument, along with performance on easy and challenging multimedia science problem sets. Results indicated that female students reported lower self-efficacy and higher concerns about their performance than male students. Students' initial strategies predicted overall performance on the harder problem sets. In addition, although there was no difference in initial strategy, students' motivational beliefs predicted overall performance. Results suggest that both cognitive and motivational factors influence students' strategic efficacy.
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