Define Level of Aspiration.

Level of aspiration refers to where and how far individuals set their targets for achievement. It is a complex phenomenon and is determined largely by our past failures and successes, perceptions about our own ability and some elements of involvement of our ego and self.

In setting our level of aspiration whether it is high or low, what we attribute our failure or success to become very important considerations. The failure or success may be attributed to ability, effort, mood, luck, knowledge, unfairness, interest of others etc.

The significant point is that how the individual analyses and explains his success or failure will determine what targets he sets for him herself as future aspirations.

Level of aspiration can be understood by referring to Weiner’s attribute. According to this theory, most of the attributed causes for successes can be characterized in terms of three dimensions: locus (location of the cause as internal or external to the person), stability (whether the cause stays the same or can change) and responsibility (whether the person can control the cause).

If success or failure is attributed to internal factors, success will lead to pride and a high level of aspiration and learning. Failure will lead to setting low level of aspiration and learning.

In addition, feeling in control over one’s own learning seems to be related to having a high level of aspiration, choosing more difficult tasks to do, putting out more effort and persisting longer in one’s work.

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