Awareness of Achievement
In Chapter 2,I differentiated the achievement game from learning in terms of the difference found by Entwistle (1987) between two forms of student engagement, the “strategic approach” on the one hand, and “deep” and “surface approaches” on the other. I claimed that this distinction corresponded to different information-flow patterns. In the pattern corresponding to the strategic approach, the flow consists of a recycling of information from curriculum to student and then back to the assessor, the goal of which was to get a grade. I described this pattern as constituting the macrodesign of the academic achievement game. In the case of both deep and surface approaches, there was a one-way flow from curriculum to student, and I described this pattern in terms of learning.
Furthermore, following Pintrich and Garcia (1991), I argued that the distinction between the achievement game and learning was not necessarily an either/or orientation a student had, but that the two goals could be pursued simultaneously. Indeed, many successful students examined in case-study research have done precisely that. After all, if the strategic approach is simply an effective way to get grades, and the deep approach is a good way to learn, there is no reason why students could not do both simultaneously.
I also argued that these flow patterns are not applicable to only transmission models of pedagogy. They also describe constructivist pedagogies when information is understood as encompassing informational structures, including procedural knowledge, forms of critical thinking, and adaptation to social conventions, in addition to facts. Under that broad view, any curricular goal can be under-