Journal article Open Access

Possible selves as roadmaps

Oyserman, Daphna; Bybee, Deborah; Terry, Kathy; Hart-Johnson, Tamera

Possible selves, expectations, and concerns about the coming year, can promote feeling good (??????I may not be doing well in school this year, but I will next year.??????) or can promote regulating for oneself (??????I may not be doing well in school this year, but to make sure I do better next year, I have signed up for summer tutoring.??????). We hypothesized that improved academic outcomes were likely only when a possible self could plausibly be a self-regulator. Hierarchical regression analyses supported this conclusion, with more support for the influence of self-regulation on change in behavior and academic outcomes than on affect regulation. N ?? 160 low-income eighth graders improved grades, spent more time doing homework, participated in class more, and were referred less to summer school (controlling for fall grades and the dependent variable of interest) when academic possible selves were plausibly self-regulatory.

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