Locus of Control

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  • Created by: Holly
  • Created on: 17-05-15 18:14

What is meant by 'locus of control'?

The term locus of control refers to a person's perception of personal control over their own behaviour.

It is measured along a dimension of 'high internal' to 'high external'.

High internals perceive themselves as having a great deal of personal control over their behaviour, and are therefore more likely to take personal responsibility for it. 

What happens to a person is therefore seen as a product of their own ability and effort.

In contrast, high externals perceive their behaviour as being caused more by external influences or luck.

Internal and external locus of control

Locus of control research has uncovered a number of characteristics of internals and externals that have relevance for the study of independent behaviour.

  • High internals are active seekers of information that…


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