Determinants of Procrastination in Academic Settings

Ivanka Živčić-Bećirević, Sanja Smojver-Ažić, Tamara Martinac Dorčić


Academic procrastination is one of the common problems among university students. Besides negative effects on academic achievement, it might influence other aspects of student functioning. It is still not clear what factors contribute to academic procrastination. This research aims to investigate the relationship of academic procrastination with several aspects of student adjustment and their academic success, as well as the contribution of test anxiety, attribution of academic success and goal orientation to procrastination, after controlling for personality traits. A representative sample of 240 students at the University of Rijeka (162 females and 78 males) have filled out a set of questionnaires during their first and the fourth semesters. The Big Five Inventory was applied in the first year and Procrastination Inventory, Test Anxiety Inventory, Goal Orientation (CSRL) and Beck Depression Inventory were applied in the second year. The correlation between academic procrastination and all aspects of student adjustment was confirmed. After controlling for personality traits, test anxiety and goal orientation toward avoiding effort are significant positive predictors of procrastination, while attribution of academic success to putting in effort is a significant negative predictor of procrastination. Among personality traits, consciousness is the only significant, and negative, predictor of procrastination. The results are helpful for designing future research and for planning intervention programs with college students.


procrastination; attribution of success; goal orientation; personality traits; student adjustment to college

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Print ISSN 1330-0288 | Online ISSN 1848-6096