Pintrich, Paul Robert 1953-2003
Paul Pintrich was born on November 4, 1953. He died of a heart attack July 12, 2003, while riding with a group of bicyclists on the road back from Hell, Michigan.
Pintrich received a B.A. in psychology from Clark University in 1975 and a Ph.D. in education and psychology from the University of Michigan in 1982. He remained at Michigan until his death, rising through the ranks to become professor and chair of the Combined Program in Education and Psychology and associate dean for research in the School of Education.
Although Pintrich died before reaching the age of 50, he was unusually productive, publishing well over 100 articles and book chapters as well as coauthoring or co-editing nine books. He was an excellent mentor and colleague, publishing with many collaborators in the United States and abroad. He helped build bridges to psychology in Europe, participating in the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI) and serving as president of the Division of Learning, Instruction, and School Psychology of the International Association of Applied Psychology. His professional service also included the editorship of the Educational Psychologist, the presidency of APA Division 15 (Educational Psychology), and president of the AERA Special Interest Group on Motivation.
In the early 1980s Pintrich and Wilbert J. McKeachie developed one of the first courses in Learning to Learn. This course differed from traditional study skills courses in that students not only learned strategies for learning but also learned the cognitive and motivational theories that underlie student learning so that they could apply the theories in new learning situations (Pintrich, McKeachie, & Lin, 1985). Followup studies showed that the course improved learning in later courses (McKeachie, Pintrich, & Lin, 1985). An outgrowth of that work was the development of the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ), which was used all over the world (Pintrich, Smith, Garcia, & McKeachie, 1991).
Beginning with studies of student self-efficacy (Pin-trich & Blumenfeld, 1985), Pintrich was soon writing about the dynamic interactions between cognition and motivation in learning (Pintrich, 1988, 1989, Marx, & Boyle, 1993). In their seminal research on self-directed learning, Pintrich and his wife, Elizabeth De Groot, integrated cognitive, motivational, and behavioral factors affecting learning (Pintrich & De Groot, 1990). Well before self-regulation became a major research area, Pin-trich was publishing research and theory that formed a foundation for later work. He and his students expanded the original cognitive approach to self-regulation to include regulation of motivation and emotion as well (Garcia & Pintrich, 1994; VanderStoep, Pintrich, & Fagerlin, 1996).
Shortly thereafter Pintrich and his students became involved in research on goal theory. Their work was designed to answer questions such as the following: Are students primarily studying to get a good grade or is their primary goal to gain a good understanding of the subject? Are they more concerned with doing better than other students (performance motivation) than with mastering the subject (mastery motivation)? Although goals are usually thought of in positive terms, Pintrich and his collaborators also looked at avoidance goals (Zusho & Pintrich, 2000).
In later years Pintrich and Barbara Hofer (his student) began studying epistemological beliefs. Their paper “The development of epistemological beliefs: Beliefs about knowledge and knowing and their relation to learning” (Hofer & Pintrich, 2002) won the AERA award for best review article of the year.
Pintrich was a pioneer in developing an integrated theory of motivation and cognition and in showing how classrooms influence the development of student motivation for learning. He was one of the world's leading scholars in the area of student motivation, cognition, and self-regulation.
Boekaerts, M., Pintrich, P. R., & Ziegler, M. (Eds.). (2000). Handbook of self-regulation. San Diego, CA: Academic Press.
Hoefer, B. K., & Pintrich, P. R. (Eds.). (2002). Personal epistemology: The psychology of beliefs about knowledge and knowing. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
Pintrich, P. R., Brown, D. R., & Weinstein, C. E. (Eds.). (1994). Student motivation, cognition, and learning: Essays in honor of Wilbert J. McKeachie. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
Pintrich, P. R., & Schunk, D. H. (1996). Motivation in education: Theory, research, and applications. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Merrill.
Pintrich, P. R., & Schunk, D. H. (2002). Motivation in education: Theory, research, and applications (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Merrill.
Schunk, D. H., Pintrich, P. R., & Meece, J. L. (2008). Motivation in education: Theory, research, and applications (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Merrill Prentice Hall.
Sinatra, G. M., & Pintrich, P. R. (2003). Intentional conceptual change. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
VanderStoep, S. W., & Pintrich, P. R. (2003, 2008). Learning to learn: The skill and will of college success. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
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