Indexed on: 20 Jun '01Published on: 20 Jun '01Published in: Journal of sports sciences
The aim of this study was to examine the empirical links between achievement goal theory and self-determination theory in sport. Addressing theoretical and methodological limitations of previous research, the study tested the independent and interactive effects of goal orientations and perceived competence on seven motivational variables with different degrees of self-determination. Regression analyses of data collected from 247 British university students showed that task orientation predicted motivational variables with high self-determination. In contrast, ego orientation predicted motivational variables with low self-determination. Perceived competence predicted both high self-determined and low self-determined motivational variables. A significant interaction emerged between task and ego orientations in predicting external regulation. The results suggest the adaptive role of task orientation in facilitating self-determined motivation in sport. However, the findings are not conclusive, as the variance explained in most analyses was relatively small. Suggestions are offered for a more comprehensive empirical testing of the links between the two theories.