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Nurse Educ Today. 2015 Mar;35(3):432-8. doi: 10.1016/j.nedt.2014.11.001. Epub 2014 Nov 13.

The relationship between academic self-concept, intrinsic motivation, test anxiety, and academic achievement among nursing students: mediating and moderating effects.

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Zefat Academic College, Israel. Electronic address:



The impact of cognitive factors on academic achievement is well documented. However, little is known about the mediating and moderating effects of non-cognitive, motivational and situational factors on academic achievement among nursing students.


The aim of this study is to explore the direct and/or indirect effects of academic self-concept on academic achievement, and examine whether intrinsic motivation moderates the negative effect of test anxiety on academic achievement.


This descriptive-correlational study was carried out on a convenience sample of 170 undergraduate nursing students, in an academic college in northern Israel. Academic motivation, academic self-concept and test anxiety scales were used as measuring instruments. Bootstrapping with resampling strategies was used for testing multiple mediators' model and examining the moderator effect.


A higher self-concept was found to be directly related to greater academic achievement. Test anxiety and intrinsic motivation were found to be significant mediators in the relationship between self-concept and academic achievement. In addition, intrinsic motivation significantly moderated the negative effect of test anxiety on academic achievement.


The results suggested that institutions should pay more attention to the enhancement of motivational factors (e.g., self-concept and motivation) and alleviate the negative impact of situational factors (e.g., test anxiety) when offering psycho-educational interventions designed to improve nursing students' academic achievements.


Academic motivation; Intrinsic achievement; Self-concept; Test anxiety

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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