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A test of self-determination theory in school physical education

Standage, Martyn and Duda, Joan L and Ntoumanis, Nikos (2005) A test of self-determination theory in school physical education. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 75 (3). pp. 411-433. ISSN 0007-0998

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URL of Published Version: http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/bpsoc/bjep/2005/00000075/00000003/art00005;jsessionid=2c68sf54y5a7a.alexandra

Identification Number/DOI: DOI:10.1348/000709904X22359

Background. Contemporary research conducted in the context of school physical education (PE) has increasingly embraced various tenets of selfdetermination theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985, 1991). Despite this increase in research attention, some postulates of the framework remain unexplored (e.g. impact of a need-supportive climate). As such, the present study sought to provide a more comprehensive test of self-determination theory. The present work also examined Deci and Ryan’s claim that the motivational sequence embraced by their framework is invariant across gender.

Aims. (i) To examine a model of motivation based on the tenets of selfdetermination theory, and (ii) explore the invariance of the model across gender.

Sample. Participants were 950 British secondary school students (443 male, 490 female, 17 gender not specified)

Method. Participants completed a questionnaire that included measures of need support, need satisfaction, motivation, positive and negative affect, task challenge, and concentration.

Results. Structural equation modelling (SEM) analysis revealed that students who perceived a need-supporting environment experienced greater levels of need satisfaction. Need satisfaction predicted intrinsic motivation, which, in turn, linked to adaptive PE-related outcomes. In contrast, need satisfaction negatively predicted amotivation, which, in turn, was positively predictive of feelings of unhappiness. Multisample
SEM invariance testing revealed the model to be largely invariant for male and female students.

Conclusions. The results of the study provide support for self-determination theory and corroborate the application of the framework to the context of school PE. Further, we largely found support for the invariance of the motivational processes embraced by self-determination theory across gender.

Type of Work:Article
Date:September 2005 (Publication)
School/Faculty:Schools (1998 to 2008) > School of Sport & Exercise Science
Department:School of Sport and Exercise Sciences
Subjects:GV Recreation Leisure
BF Psychology
Institution:University of Birmingham
Copyright Holders:British Psychological Society
ID Code:422
Refereed:YES
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