Education and Human Sciences, College of (CEHS)


Date of this Version

Summer 8-10-2012

Document Type



A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Arts, Major: Educational Psychology, Under the supervision of Professor Roger Bruning. Lincoln, Nebraska: August, 2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Mingying Zheng


The purpose of this study was to develop and provide initial validation of an instrument to measure writing attributional style among college students, the Attributional Style Questionnaire for Writing (ASQ-W). A sample of 133 college students from a Midwestern university participated in the current study. A qualitative and quantitative mixed method study was conducted to report the perceived causes for writing success and failure and examine the internal consistency, discriminant validity, and predictive validity of the measure. Two other surveys— Liking Writing Scale (LWS) and Self-Efficacy for Writing Scale (SEWS)—also were administered to provide preliminary information on validity for the ASQ-W. Results of the qualitative study indicated that ability and effort were the two most frequently reported causes for writing success and failure. Results of the quantitative study indicated that the ASQ-W may be two-dimensional instead of three as predicted. Results also indicted that attributions for both writing success and failure were perceived as internal and controllable, while attributions for writing success were perceived as more stable than those for writing failure. The relationship between writing attributions and students’ liking writing, students’ writing self-efficacy, and students’ writing performance were presented and discussed.

Adviser: Roger H. Bruning