Perceived control of the attribution process: measurement and theory

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The primary objective of this study was to develop the Perceived Control of the Attribution Process Scale (PCAPS), a measure of metacognitive beliefs of causality, or a perceived control of

The primary objective of this study was to develop the Perceived Control of the Attribution Process Scale (PCAPS), a measure of metacognitive beliefs of causality, or a perceived control of the attribution process. The PCAPS included two subscales: perceived control of attributions (PCA), and awareness of the motivational consequences of attributions (AMC). Study 1 (a pilot study) generated scale items, explored suitable measurement formats, and provided initial evidence for the validity of an event-specific version of the scale. Study 2 achieved several outcomes; Study 2a provided strong evidence for the validity and reliability of the PCA and AMC subscales, and showed that they represent separate constructs. Study 2b demonstrated the predictive validity of the scale and provided support for the perceived control of the attribution process model. This study revealed that those who adopt these beliefs are significantly more likely to experience autonomy and well-being. Study 2c revealed that these constructs are influenced by context, yet they lead to adaptive outcomes regardless of this contextual-specificity. These findings suggest that there are individual differences in metacognitive beliefs of causality and that these differences have measurable motivational implications.