Identified Versus Introjected Approach and Introjected Avoidance Motivations in School and in Sports: The Limited Benefits of Self-Worth Strivings

Avi Assor, Maarten Vansteenkiste, Avi Kaplan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Scopus citations

Abstract

On the basis of self-determination theory (Ryan & Deci, 2000), the authors examined whether 2 different types of introjected motivation-an avoidant type aimed at avoiding low self-worth and an approach type aimed at attaining high self-worth-are both associated with a less positive pattern of correlates relative to identified motivation-acting because one identifies with the value of the action. Two studies focusing on the academic and sports domains (N = 1,222) showed that children and adolescents differentiated between the 2 types of introjected motivation. Although introjected avoidance motivation was associated with a more negative pattern of affective and performance correlates than was introjected approach motivation, identified motivation was associated with a much more positive pattern of correlates than both types of introjected motivation. Furthermore, being high on introjected approach motivation did not yield any benefits even when combined with high identified motivation. Results suggest that past findings portraying introjected motivation as being less desirable than identified motivation cannot be ascribed to the avoidance component of introjected motivation. Findings are consistent with the view that even an approach-oriented introjected motivation has very limited benefits when compared with identified motivation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)482-497
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Volume101
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2009

Keywords

  • approach and avoidance motivation
  • identified motivation
  • introjected motivation
  • self-determination theory
  • self-esteem motivation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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