This qualitative research presents an investigation on the positive effects of procrastination. In the article, it is believed that despite the negative effects of procrastination, there are positive effects as well. Procrastinators are differentiated in this article as active and passive: passive procrastinators are the commonly known procrastinators who lack control of their time, while active procrastinators are equated to non-procrastinators. The hypothesis being investigated in this study is that does procrastination has positive effects on attitudes and performance. Even though there is a general perception that procrastination leads to negative effects such as depression in students, the article views procrastination as an effective means of achieving goals. The research questions that can be found in this investigation include the following: Are there different forms of procrastination: how does procrastination affect achievement in college students: is procrastination good or bad: what are the differences between active and passive procrastination: and what are the consequences of active and passive procrastination
The issues identified in the literature review include the following. First, the article identifies the components of procrastination, which include cognitive component (decision to procrastinate a task), behavioral component (observation of deadlines), affective component (time pressure preference), and the satisfaction and physical results with these components. The other issues include time use and perception, active and passive procrastination, self-efficacy, motivational orientation, stress-coping strategy, and personal outcomes (depression, stress, life, performance and satisfaction levels). The Independent Variable in this research is time and the Dependent Variable is active/passive procrastination. In this study, when an individual has sufficient time to perform an activity and he manages that time well, then he would be a non-procrastinator or an active procrastinator. However, if the person fails to use the available time and the deadline brings him depression, low self-efficacy and less production, then he would be considered a passive or a traditional procrastinator.
The participants of the study were 230 Undergraduate students from three Canadian Universities. There were more women than were men in the study with the former constituting 72.2% (166 women), and the latter 27.8% (64 men). The mean age of the participants was 21.49 years with a standard deviation of 2.23 years. The racial background distributions were as follows: 1.5% African American 33.3% White, 53.7% Asian, 6.5% Hispanic, and 5.0% other. First language distributions were also as follows: 47.8% English, 7.9% reported French, 32% reported Chinese, and 12.3% other. 96.5% were full time students. The average year of the participants at university was 2.67. The main instrument used in this research study was interview. According to the investigators, participation into this research study was voluntary, and the participants were allowed ample time to respond to the questionnaires at their own convenience and pace. The researchers used multi-item scales with acceptable consistencies to measure the study variables. They decided on adopting existing measures with demonstrated validity and reliability whenever they considered it possible. They used a 7-point Likert Scale, where 1=not all are true, 3=true, and 7=very true in responding to all the items. The results were presented in tables and they included comparisons of means, correlation coefficients, and standard deviations of the scales used in the study, and it indicated that academic and active procrastination scales were independent. The ANOVA also compared the non-procrastinators, passive, and active procrastinators. The ANOVA revealed similarities between non-procrastinators and active procrastinators, which were different from passive procrastinators, based on time management, self-efficacy, personal outcomes, stress coping strategy and motivational orientation.
Discussion and Conclusion
According to the hypothesis of the study, the researchers found out that active procrastinators have similar characteristics with non-procrastinators. They also found that passive procrastinators are characterized by lack of self-efficacy, and past failure to complete tasks continuously haunt them. In conclusion, they indicated that the possibility that non-procrastinators and active procrastinators share similar characteristics and are significantly different from passive procrastinators. The researchers also recommended that future studies should examine variables such as awareness of environmental demands or willingness to make changes.