The impact of a driver training course on the causal attributions of young provisional-licence holders

This study examines one aspect of the application of attribution theory to understanding driving behaviour. Attribution theory approaches behaviour from the perspective of a person's "world view". It argues that an individual's actions will depend on their interpretations of the causes of events that they observe around them. These causes can be classified as internal (within the person) or external (in the environment), and stable (relatively constant) or unstable (readily modified). Previous research has shown that young drivers place less importance on internal/unstable factors (such as attention and judgement) as causes of motor vehicle accidents than older drivers. They place more emphasis on external/unstable forces ("bad luck") than older drivers. This indicates that young people are placing insufficient emphasis on their own actions as determinants of driving outcomes. The authors suggest that formal post- licence driver training courses may provide some of the necessary challenges to the existing world view and, in turn, lead to its replacement with one which is more appropriate to successful future driving. This suggestion is based on the results of an empirical investigation of three sets of provisional licence holders in New South Wales.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Research project funded by Australia. Office of Road Safety
  • Authors:
    • Martin, D S
    • Price, I R
    • Fisher, B G
  • Publication Date: 1991-8


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: 34p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01433162
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 24 2012 5:27PM