The purpose of this study was to investigate the differences between intellectually gifted achieving and underachieving secondary school students on certain motivational goal orientations such as effort, task, competition, power, praise, feedback, token, social concern, and social dependency.
A total of 144 selected United Arab Emirates secondary school male students (15-19 years of age) participated in the investigation. Participants were classified into the following two intellectually gifted groups: achieving students (n= 98) and underachieving students (n= 46).
The Inventory of School Motivation was used as a measure of the motivational goal orientations. Multivariate analysis of variance results indicated significant differences between the two intellectually gifted groups on Effort, Task, Competition, Feedback, and Social Dependency scales. Further
discriminant analysis revealed that Effort, Task, and Competition were the most discriminating variables that separate the intellectually gifted achieving students from their underachieving peers.