Facilitating self-determined motivation in university basic instruction students

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Mary Elizabeth Stoffa (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Catherine Ennis

Abstract: Current literature suggests that physical educators play a critical role in creating a classroom environment that intrinsically motivates learners to be physically active. According to Self-Determination Theory (SDT), this can be achieved through meeting learners’ basic psychological needs (BPNs; i.e., autonomy, competency, and relatedness). As these needs are met, it is more likely learners will intrinsically regulate their desire to be physically active. SDT psychological needs, constructs, associated pedagogical practices, and their relations to motivational regulations have been studied extensively in primary and secondary physical education (PE) settings. However, minimal research has been conducted to analyze these relationships in university settings. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to describe university basic instruction program (BIP) instructors’ planning and teaching practices associated with student BPNs in their lessons. Specifically, the research questions were (a) What are university students’ perceptions of autonomy, competency, and relatedness at the beginning and end of a BIP course and (b) What teaching practices appear to facilitate BPNs for these university students? This study utilized a mixed methods design to describe students’ BPNs and motivational regulations (e.g., amotivation, extrinsic, and intrinsic motivation) as they participated in two BIP courses. Participants for this research were two BIP instructors and their students in a conditioning and beginning swimming course, respectively, taught during a summer session at a major university in the Southeastern United States. Motivational regulations were assessed using a modified version of the Perceived Locus of Causality Scale and BPNs using a modified Basic Psychological Needs Scale. Additionally, teaching strategies consistent with enhancing self-determined motivation were examined using field observation and instructor and student interviews. Quantitative data were analyzed using means and standard deviations and qualitative data using inductive analysis and constant comparison. Qualitative data analysis revealed several themes surrounding student BPNs: these included integrating BPNs, linking self-determined motivation and constructivism, intentional interaction, and the desire to be valued. Instructional implications and future researcher recommendations were detailed.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
Basic Instruction Program, Constructivism, Instructional Strategies, Pedagogy, Self-Determination Theory, Self-Determined Motivation
Physical education and training $x Study and teaching (Higher)
Physical education for college students
Teacher-student relationships
Motivation in education
Autonomy (Psychology)

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