Locus of Control Essay
Locus of control is the extent to which a person believes he or she can control over life’s events. It is an important personality trait and is one of the most research human traits together with self-esteem, self-efficacy, and neurotocism. Every person has a different perception of the world around us and reality. I have noticed already many times, that after leaving a class room after a difficult exams, some student complain that they did not study enough while others blame only professor and complain that he or she gave too difficult exams. In terms of psychology, these students have different locus of control. Locus of control can be internal which means that one believes that he or she actually controls what causes good and bad things in life. For example, the students who complain that they did not study enough have internal locus of control. As an opposite, there is also external locus of control. People who have this trait think that there are some higher powers, destiny, for example, environmental conditions or other people who control their decisions as well as what happens in their lives. Obviously, students who complain that professor gave very difficult exam have external locus of control.
It is quite obvious, that people who have internal locus of control are more motivated to work harder, because they know in general that this will bring good results. Internal and external locus of control are researched in human resource management and even scales to measure locus of control were developed.
I personally think that I have internal locus of control, at least to some extent. I believe that very often I decide what exactly happens in my life. Of course, I always have to act in some particular circumstances, make decisions based on limited choices, interact with certain people, however, even with this pre-conditions I believe that I still have the power to make my own choices and determine positive or negative things that happen in my life. I not only believe in it, I also know for sure from my previous experience that if I study hard enough for the exam, I will most probably receive a good grade. And other way around as well. My grades depend mostly on how hard I work, and not so much on good or bad luck, light in the classroom or mood of professor.
As I wrote above, I believe that I have internal locus of control to some extend. Even though I believe that I have power to influence numerous events in my life, there are still outside factors that determine the outcome. I believe in good or bad luck that play often decisive role. Coming back to the example with school exam, apart from personal efforts of each student, there are several other important factors, like abilities of every student and their previous experiences. Locus of control of a person can change throughout the life and is often based on the previous experiences. For example young children tend to have external locus of control and believe that most of the things in the lives are influences by external factors, whereas as they grow older locus of control can change from external to internal.
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