|dc.description.abstract||It is known that the status with regard to teaching and learning of mathematics in South
Africa is below norm. One of the reasons for this situation is the fact that many
mathematics educators experience problems in assisting learners to invest effort
voluntarily in task performance, as well as in strategic plans to maintain their learning
intentions. Since learners' reasons for lack of maintenance of intentions and keeping
onto learning agenda can not be addressed well if they are not understood, more research
studies directed towards investigating these problems need to be done. It is for this
reason that this study was aimed at investigating use of volitional strategies, study
orientation in mathematics and learning context in relation to performance.
The study was done on selected schools with consistent good performance in
mathematics (matric pass rate > 80%) for past three to five years. Also included were
schools with consistent low performance (matric pass rate < 30%) in the same period.
Mathematics teachers of the affected schools were included. The results of the empirical
survey reveal the presence of strong significant link between learner perceptions with
regard to use of volitional strategies and study orientation. The positive study orientation
and volitional strategy use increased learner attributive effect on performance.
Furthermore in particular this study reveals strong negative correlation of emotional
perseverance inhibition and emotional perseverance rumination and strong positive
correlation between failure control and performance.
In addition, this study unveiled significant difference between study milieu and learning
context. There was moderate impact difference noticed in attitudes, anxiety, study-habits
and information processing between schools. Deduction that a suitable learning context
moderately to strongly affects aspects of study orientation was made. Learners at schools
with high tests scores most favourably perceived the use of attentional distractibility,
emotion control, emotional perseverance rumination, and stress reducing than at other
schools. Therefore the deduction is made that learning context induced volitional
strategy use, which impacted on learner achievement. These findings are similar to those
made by other researchers on these topics worldwide.
An important contribution made by this study is that it, in a South African context, sheds
light both on the need for use of volitional strategies and also presents contextual
differences that impact on study orientation in mathematics and ultimate learner
performance. Hence the researcher is therefore persuaded that through training in the
appropriate knowledge, skills and use of volitional strategies teachers may be able to
create a more favourable learning context in their classes that enhances study orientation
in general, particularly in mathematics. Therefore there is need to integrate affective
issues in the mathematics curriculum||