Cognitive determinants of interests: An extension of a theoretical model and initial empirical examinations

Azy Barak, Iris Librowsky, Shoshana Shiloh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article elaborates on a previous theoretical model concerning the development and maintenance of interests. According to the current view, individuals-through the operation of various cognitive mechanisms-structure two cognitive processes: self-schemata and performance-related future time orientation cognitions. These two cognitive processes consequently and consistently produce three distinct and measurable cognitive determinants-perceived abilities, expected success, and anticipated satisfaction-which themselves sequentially create subjective affects and motivations defined as interests. Two studies were conducted to test some initial hypotheses derived from this model. In an interpersonal design study, the cognitive determinants highly correlated with interests, and all three significantly contributed for a multiple prediction of interests. In an intrapersonal design study, interests were highly correlated with perceived abilities, which were themselves highly related to internal and stable causal attributions. The implications of the model for career development and choice-related issues are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)318-334
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Applied Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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