HomeThe Asia-Pacific Education Researchervol. 19 no. 1 (2010)

Epistemological Beliefs and Theory of Planned Behavior: Examining Beliefs about Knowledge and Knowing as Distal Predictors of Indonesian Tertiary Students' Intention to Study

Gregory Arief D. Liem | Allan B.I Bernardo

Discipline: Education, Philosophy



Using the theory of planned behavior or TPB (Ajzen, 2005) as a general framework, the study examines the role of Indonesian students' beliefs about the nature of knowledge and knowing (epistemological beliefs) as a distal antecedent predictor of students' behavioral intention in studying for a forthcoming examination. Consistent with the TPB, it was hypothesized that the effects of epistemological beliefs on the behavioral intention to study would be mediated by three proximal antecedent predictors: (a) attitudes toward studying hard, (b) personal norms related to studying hard, and (c) perceived behavioral control over studying hard. Participants were 497 psychology undergraduate students at a private university in Indonesia, who answered a Bahasa Indonesian translation of Chan and Elliott's (2002) Epistemological Belief Questionnaire and a questionnaire on their beliefs and behavioral intentions related to studying hard and persistently for an examination. The results of hierarchical multiple regressions supported the hypotheses. Students' belief that effort is a prerequisite of the attainment of knowledge and belief that ability is innate and non-malleable were positive and negative predictors, respectively, of studying hard-related attitudes, personal norms, perceived behavioral control, and behavioral intentions. And the relationships between effort and ability beliefs and studying behavioral intentions were fully mediated by the three proximal predictors of the behavioral intention.