The correlation of children's perception of locus of control to originality in selected groups of sixth grade children Public Deposited

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  • This study was developed in order to determine whether substantiation for Carl Rogers' theory of originality as related to an internal locus of control could be located among groups of elementary school children. The setting was in Portland, Oregon, in three types of city schools: suburban (upper/ upper-middle class); conventional (middle/lower middle-class); and common man (lower-middle/ lower class). Two hundred and sixty-one sixth grade students took part in the study. The sample would be considered quite indicative of North-western school children of this developmental level, with the exception that the population was predominantly Caucasian. The two major purposes of the study were to investigate relationships between the psychological construct locus of control and creative originality as affected by intelligence differences, sex differences, and social class differences. Specific hypotheses were as follows: H₁: The degree of originality as measured by the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT) will correlate positively to the degree of internal locus of control as measured by the Bialer Locus of Control Questionnaire (BLCQ); H₂: Intelligence as measured by the SCAT will correlate positively with originality as measured by the TTCT and to an internal locus of control as measured by the BLCQ; H₃: There will be a significant difference shown between boys and girls in the degree of originality as measured by the TTCT and in the degree of internal locus of control as measured by the BLCQ; and H₄: There will be a significant difference in the degree of originality as measured by the TTCT and in the degree of internal locus of control as measured by the BLCQ between lower class and middle class children. The 261 students were administered the TTCT, scored for originality only; the BLCQ, ranked by raw score from low to high; the SCAT, scored by Portland norms; and the Warner Index of Occupational Rank, Revised 1960, ranked 1-4 serving for middle-class designation and 5-7 serving as lower class designation. A correlation matrix of the variables was developed using IQ categorized as 1,2, 3. A second procedure used a correlation matrix with IQ placed on a continuum. Both matrices were based on Pearsonian product-moment correlations. Multiple regressions with analysis of variance utilizing the F-test (F² ₂₅₃) sought to determine whether main effects contained the meaningful relationships or if there were significant interaction effects of the variables. The first correlation matrix with IQ categorized supported all four hypotheses. The second correlation matrix with IQ on a continuum showed IQ to be the main factor in any relationship among the variables. Hypothesis 1 was not supported, although the data indicated a direction towards a significant, positive relationship between locus of control and originality. Hypothesis two was supported: IQ correlated significantly with both an internal locus of control and with originality. Hypothesis three, sex differences, was supported only in direction and was rejected. Hypothesis four, social class differences, was supported only in middle-class groupings in the suburban and the conventional types of schools. Analysis of variance with the F-test showed the main effects contained the meaningful relationships between any of the tested variables. The IQ of the student was seen as the best predictor of any relationship among variables. Prediction was most consistent among upper-middle and middle-class subjects, which could be indicative of instrument bias. Verbal originality scores related more closely to SCAT and BLCQ than figural originality, perhaps due to the dependence of all three tests on verbal rather than visual media. The need for further refinement of tests seems indicated.
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