Developmental and Current Relational Influences on Motivations Toward Academic Identity
McFadden, Elizabeth Jay
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The purpose of the present study was to assess the developmental and current relational variables that play a role in the development and maintenance of academic identity. Specifically, I was interested in identifying variables that are related to adopting a more autonomously motivated academic identity as previous research indicates that engagement in more autonomously motivated activities is related to greater mental and physical health and greater persistence and performance within the activity. The current study considered the role of developmental autonomy support as well as pressure and control from current relational partners in relation to participants’ current motivation towards their schoolwork. Results showed support for the developmental hypotheses, such that greater autonomy support was significantly associated with greater autonomous motivation towards academics. Pressure and control from current relational partners was not consistently related to participants’ relative autonomy, but was in many instances related to amotivation, such that greater pressure was related to greater amotivation.