While motivation is commonly interpreted as an individual student’s characteristic, motivational perceptions and beliefs, such as causal attributions of success and failure, are embedded in cultural meanings and contextual practices. The current study aimed to investigate causal attributions among Arab high school students in Israel and to interpret them in the light of their cultural-political context. Two hundred and five 11th-grade Arab students from three different geographic regions in Israel responded to open-ended and closed survey questions about events of success and failure in school. The analysis indicated that students overwhelmingly considered exams when thinking about events of success and failure, reflecting the normative teacher-centered pedagogical practices in schools. The analysis also manifested patterns of a self-serving bias. These findings are interpreted in the light of the cultural-political characteristics of the Arab school system in Israel.